Top Skin Lightening Ingredients to Eliminate Age Spots and Sun Damage

Don’t Shop Blind! Know What Ingredients Work!

Do you want to get rid of age spots, melasma, or dark spots caused by sun damage but don’t know what to use?

Are you overwhelmed by the number of products that claim to even out your skin tone?

Of course you are! There are dozens of products on the shelf that claim to get rid of dark spots and make you look younger, and some of them are extremely expensive. It’s no wonder that you don’t just start trying products until one works; you’d have to mortgage your house.

Good news! I’ve done a ton of research for you and have made a list of ingredients to look for that are actually proven to get rid of those age spots. Let’s get started.

  1. Hydroquinone

    This industrially-produced chemical has been used for years as a skin whitening agent but has since been banned in many countries because it’s thought to be carcinogenic. The FDA, however, has tentatively determined that it’s safe to use topically but that you need a prescription for it.

    Because it actually shuts off your melanin production, you shouldn’t use it long-term because it can damage the enzymes that manage that process. Three months is generally the cut-off for use and the dark spots will often come back when you discontinue use.

    You should only apply hydroquinone directly to the dark spot, not your entire face. Just FYI, HQ is the main ingredient in photo developers. A more stable derivitave called arbutin is also commonly used and is less irritating but just as effective as hydroquinone.

    Click here to try Murad’s Environmental Shield Age Spot and Pigment Lightening Gel with hydroquinone.

  2. Azelaic Acid

    Naturally derived from the fungus that causes topical yeast infections, azaleic acid was shown to be nearly as effective as hydroquinone without any of the toxicity, and it gets rid of acne, too. Another advantage is that it only works on hyperactive meloanocytes, or ones that are abnormal, without negatively altering the ones that are functioning normally.

    In other words, it’ll get rid of your age spots but not your naturally-occurring tan or freckles. The standard strength for effectiveness is 15% for treatment of rosacea and 20% for treatment of acne and melasma.

    If you want a professional-grade product containing azelaic acid, click here to try Dr. Denese Firming Facial Light Resurfacing Peel.

  3. Kojik Acid

    This is also derived from various fungi and, unlike azelaic acid, can cause skin irritation. It’s often mixed with corticosteroids to reduce inflammation or irritation. Kojic acid acts, in a nutshell, by attaching to copper so that it doesn’t bind with the pigment enzyme, and by preventing the production of melanin to begin with.

    It’s also a powerful antioxidant so it destroys free radicals that cause sun damage. You’ll often find it in a 1-4% base and it’s pretty common for it to used with glycolic acid, hydroquinone, or both. If you can’t use hydroquinone, your doctor may recommend this instead because used alone, it’s less likely to cause irritation.

    Click here to try SkinCeutical’s Phyto + with kojic acid.

  4. Retinoids

    Retinoids are simply types of vitamin A that are used to treat age spots, sun damage, acne, wrinkles, and post inflammatory hyperpigmentation. Sometimes you’ll see them used in conjunction with hydroquinone, glycolic acid, or mequinol because they improve penetration. They can be irritating to your skin though modern forms are more stable and less irritating that the preliminary ones used years ago. Some types of retinoids include:

    • Tretinoin 0.01 to 0.1% cream or gel
    • Tazarotene 0.05 to 0.1% cream or gel
    • Adapalene 0.1 to 0.3% cream or gel
    • Isotretinoin (the more stable form or tretinoin)

    Tretinoin is a metabolite of retinol (vitamin A) and is a first-generation retinoid. Side effects include irritation, inflammation and peeling It’s effective but it takes a significant amount of time (as much as 6 months) to see results.

    Adapalene and tazarotene are third-generation topical retinoids and are synthetic. They aren’t as prone to cause irritation. Finally, Isotretinoin is a natural, first generation retinoid that comes in both topical and oral forms. The oral form is for treatment of acne.

    Of all the products that contain a retinoid, Olay’s Regenerist line is by far the best known and loved. Click here to try Olay’s Regenerist Intensive Repair Treatment with Pro Retinol.

  5. Mequinol

    Mequinol is a derivative of hydroquinone but is generally less irritating. It’s usually used in concentrations that range from 2 to 20% and is particularly known for its effectiveness on sun spots. Mequinol is typically paired with tretinoin or retinoic acid.

  6. Glycolic Acid

    This alpha-hydroxy acid may just lighten your skin in two ways instead of just one. It’s a derivative of sugar cane and is thought to act similarly to retinoids in the manner that it works. It may shorten the life of the cell so that the pigment is lost faster, and it’s also used at higher dosages (30 to 70%) as a facial peel. It removes the superficial layers of your skin so that other lightening agents can penetrate easier and work faster.

    Click here to try one of tne of the better glycolic acid products: Peter Thomas Roth Max Complexion Correction Pads.

  7. Ascorbic Acid

    Also known as vitamin C, ascorbic acid reduces hyperpigmentation in a couple of ways. First, it interacts with the oxidation process at a few different stages of melanin production. It also neutralizes free radicals so that they can’t cause damage. Finally, ascorbic acid may actually protect your skin from damaging light. Concentrations run from 5 to 10%. Sometimes you’ll find ascorbic acid with other lightening agents because it may improve absorption.

    Click here to try Murad’s Essential-C Daily Renewal Complex.

Other Ingredients That Reduce Dark Spots

These are the main skin lightening agents that you should look for if you want to decrease age spots, eliminate dark spots caused by sun damage, or would like to get rid of melasma and even out your skin tone. There are a few other ingredients that are also really good, and they are:

  • Niacinimide, or vitamin B3
  • Hydroxystilbene
  • Corticosteroids
  • N Acetylglucosamine
  • Glutathione
  • Alpha-Hydroxy Acids

Final Word

Getting rid of age spots, sun damage, melasma, and uneven skin tone can make you look younger and, more importantly, feel good about yourself again. Many of these products do have side effects though, and you’re really not going to see effects over night. Any product that promises that is almost surely a scam.

If you’re willing to be patient and dedicated, though, it’s entirely possible to at least lighten those dark spots significantly to the point that they’re barely noticeable.

If you’ve had experience with any of these products, let us know about it in the comments section below! It’s always better to hear from our readers than depend on what a scientific study says!


Clinique Even Better Makeup with SPF 15 Review

Is It Really Even Better, or Just Another Foundation?

It’s tough to find a foundation that works with dry, aging skin but Clinique’s Even Better Makeup SPF 15 supposedly does.

That’s not all that this cover up supposedly does, either. By the end of this article, you’ll know what’s in this product and learn what other real users actually have to say about it.

Let’s start with what Clinique claims that it’ll do and go from there.

What Do They Claim?

According to Clinique, this dermatologist-tested foundation brightens your skin and evens out your skin tone as soon as you apply it. When you take your makeup off, you’ll notice that your skin is clearer, your skin tone will be more even, and your age spots and sun spots will be noticeably improved within 4-6 weeks.

Even Better Makeup with SPF 15 wears all day and provides moderate to full coverage. Since it has sunscreen and antioxidants in it, the foundation also helps to prevent discoloration.

What’s In It?

There are several different emollients and moisturizers in the product as well as stuff to make it slather on smoothly and maintain its consistency. Boring! We can get good moisturizers for just a few bucks at any local drugstore. Let’s talk about the ingredients that may actually get you some visible results.

One of the first ingredients that I noticed was citrus jabara. I’ve never seen this ingredient listed in any of the products that I’ve reviewed, so it made me curious. It turns out that it’s a Japanese citrus fruit known for its antioxidant and antihistimine qualities.

In other words, citrus jabara fights free radicals and soothes irritated or allergy-prone skin. Excellent, especially in conjunction with the grapefruit seed extract and the birch bark extract (also skin soothers and antioxidants as well as astringents) that are found in this product!

Another nifty ingredient is Trametes Versicolor extract. This is, oddly enough, from a mushroom and is proven to help break up melanin, which means that it can help get rid of age spots and discoloration caused by sun damage.

OK, moisturizer – check. Skin tone improvement – check. Something to reduce age spots – check. It looks like this product has the ingredients in it to back up Clinique’s claims, but are they in there in large enough amounts to be effective? Let’s see what people who are actually using it have to say.

What Are Users Saying?

For the most part, people love this product. Here are some of the things that are repeated over and over by people who have tried the Even Better Makeup with SPF 15:

  • Excellent coverage for flaws
  • Good finish that doesn’t look oily
  • Great consistency; not too heavy or too runny
  • Lasts all day
  • Helps even out skin tone
  • Provides a bright, luminous finish
  • Doesn’t break you out
  • Has many shades so finding one that matches is easy

Though there were a few people who just didn’t like the product, the main thing that most people with a complaint mention is that the product isn’t buildable and lacks enough coverage. Those who don’t like it though tend to need super coverage for serious flaws.

A couple of people, both of whom claim to have extremely fair skin, say that the product looks orangey. Besides those two complaints, everybody seems to love it.

Final Word

This product has the ingredients and the user backing. Apparently, it does what it says that it does. Be aware though that the brightness is at least partially caused by the silicones in it and only lasts as long as you’re wearing the product. Also, there isn’t much sunscreen in the Even Better Makeup so it may be good to use something with a higher SPF before you apply. Just be sure to give it 10 minutes or so to soak in before putting on your foundation.

This product can be a bit pricey, so click here to find some really good online deals on Clinique’s Even Better Makeup with SPF 15.

If you’ve tried this product, let us know about your experience in the comments section below. It’s great to hear what our readers think!


Olay Total Effects 7 in 1 Eye Transformation Cream Review

Totally Effective or a Waste of Time?

Recently I heard about a product by Olay that claims to get rid of dark eye circles.

Since I’m getting a ton of requests for products that can help with this problem, I figured I’d check Olay’s Total Effects 7 in 1 Eye Transformation Cream out for you.

By the end of this article, you’ll know what Olay claims that the product can do, what ingredients are in it and what real users think of it so that you can decide for yourself whether or not to try it.

What Do They Claim?

Olay claims that their total effects line uses a “VitaNiacin formula” to fight seven different signs of aging. They say that their products improve rough skin, reduce the look of wrinkles and fine lines, even out your skin tone, decrease the appearance of large pores, moisturize, and noticeably improve the appearance of age spots.

That’s just the general statement for the entire Total Effects line, and really all that they say about any of the products. The only thing that Olay really says specifically about the eye cream is that it provides 7 benefits in one must-have product that’s good for use all around the eye area. It supposedly gives you “visibly radiant, younger-looking eyes”.

OK then, now that we know what Olay claims that the Total Effects Eye-Transforming Cream can do, let’s take a look at what’s in the eye cream to see if it really has the teeth to back up the talk.

What’s In It?

Most of the ingredients in this eye cream are emollients, moisturizers, and stablilizers. There’s also mico, which a material used in roofing shingles and cosmetics to refract light and thus create the illusion of brightness or hide hollow spots and other flaws that cause your skin tone to look uneven.

Another ingredient that’s in the cream that will make your eyes look brighter is titanium dioxide. It’s a sunscreen as well as a tint. The green tea, aloe, and cucumber extracts may help with puffiness and wrinkles, and the niacin (vitamin B3) is known for retaining moisture. Finally, the vitamin C may help exfoliate and reduce mild age spots and vitamin E is a healing antioxidant and moisturizer.

Though all of these ingredients are good, there are also parabens, phosphates, and other questionable materials in Total Effects Eye Cream.

What Are Users Saying?

The reviews on this product are all over the scale but it seems that people who are just looking for a moisturizer or a cosmetic cure for dark eye circles are happy but people who expect the product to actually reduce dark circles or wrinkles instead of just covering them up aren’t satisfied.

Most users do say that they really like the texture of the cream and that there is enough of the product to last several months even if you use it twice per day. There’s a shimmer to it from the mico and the silica so it should make your eyes look brighter and detract from the appearance of flaws, and most users agree that it does.

Final Word

If you’re looking for a product that actually reduces the signs of aging even when you’re not wearing makeup, you’re probably not going to like this product. If, however, you’re just looking for a product to put on with your makeup that will cover your dark spots and flaws while making the skin around your eyes luminous and younger looking while you’re wearing it, then you’ll like it. You’ll also enjoy it if you’re looking for a moisturizer for around your eyes.

If you’re looking for a product that will actually decrease fine lines, eliminate dark eye circles, and firm your skin, then you’re not going to like the Total Effects 7 in 1 Eye Cream. Considering the ingredients, it’s going to soften and moisturize your skin and make it look shimmery when it’s on, but it’s probably not going to have any real impact on the signs of aging except when you’re wearing it.

Just a word of caution: If you wear contacts, this may not be a good product for you because the silica and mico in it may get under your contacts and irritate your eyes.

Click here to find the best deal on Olay Total Effects Eye Transformation Cream.

If you’ve tried this eye cream, let us know what you think of it in the comments section below.


Kate Somerville’s CytoCell Dark Circle Corrective Eye Cream Review

Does It Correct Dark Circles of Simply Collect Your Money?

Are the dark smudges under your eyes making you look tired and old?

Are you sick of having to apply makeup every morning just to cover up those raccoon eyes? You’re not alone. It’s a problem that we all face eventually.

There are a million creams out there that claim to get rid of dark undereye circles, so what makes this one different?

We’re going to take a look at what’s in Kate Somerville’s CytoCell Dark Circle Corrective Eye Cream and what users are saying about it in order to decide if it really does brighten your undereye area and make you look fresher and younger.

What Do They Claim?

According to Kate Somerville, this is a supercream. It supposedly treats the signs of aging in your eye area by reactivating dormant stem cells.

To be precise, after 4 weeks of use, the vast majority of users in their clinical studies supposedly reported that the skin around their eyes was “dramatically more hydrated”, darkeness was significantly reduced so that skin looked brighter and lighter, and that their skin felt significantly younger. I’m not sure exactly what that last claim means, but let’s check out what’s in this eye cream that makes it special.

What’s In CytoCell?

For a change, I’m going to start with what’s NOT in it. There are no:

  • parabens
  • phthalates
  • sulfates
  • GMO’s
  • synthetic fragrances or dyes
  • petrochemicals
  • triclosan, an antibacterial that can mix with the trace amounts of chlorine in your water to form the carcinogen chloroform.

The vast majority of the ingredients in CytoCell are moisturizers, emollients, and humectants. Since one of the main causes of dark circles is lack of hydration, this may be a good thing if that’s what’s causing your problem. Citric acid’s on the list of ingredients, too. It’s often used to lighten skin.

There’s one ingredient, Pyridoxine Tris-Hexyldecnoate, that has me stumped. Pyridoxine is a form of vitamin B6 and decnoate is an ingredient that body builders use to stimulate protein synthesis that builds lean muscle mass. Hexyl is a compound of hydrogen and carbon. The chemical isn’t listed anywhere in any of my databases other than as an ingredient in CytoCell, so I’m not sure what to say about it.

There is one component that’s been accepted as a proven anti-aging ingredient by the NCBI, an American biochemical governing agency. Trials prove that tetrahydroxypropyl ethylenediamine (THPE) actually reduces signs of aging by lifting your skin and improving radiance and firmness. However, the trials were conducted with a 2.5% concentration and we don’t know for sure how much is in this product. It’s the 12th ingredient, which puts in about 1/3 of the way down the list.

Finally, there are a few different tints and light refractors in CytoCell that may immediately reduce the appearance of dark circles by simply covering them up or providing an illusion of brightness.

What Are Users Saying?

Reviews on the actual ability of this product to eliminate dark spots are a little mixed. Most people say that it helped at least some, but there are a few who report no improvement at all. Considering the fact that there are so many causes for dark eye circles, that’s not surprising.

People are pretty much universally satisfied with the moisturizing ability of CytoCell. They also say that it does make your skin feel firmer and look better.

Final Word

I wasn’t particularly prepared to like this cream because the ingredients in it, for the most part, are only moisturizers and softeners, plus I’m always suspicious when there are patented secret ingredients or ones that I can’t identify. It appears, though, that people really like it, and since it does have the THPE in it, it may be worth a try.

Click here to find the best deals on Kate Somerville’s CytoCell.

If you’ve tried this product, did it help with your dark eye circles? Did it make the skin around your eyes look younger? Tell us about your experience in the comments section below.


How to Get Rid of Dark Under Eye Circles For Good

What Causes Your Dark Undereye Circles Affects Your Treatment

Are you looking for ways to remove dark circles under your eyes but don’t want to waste your money on yet another beauty cream without knowing if it works?

Maybe you’re getting sick and tired of people asking if you’re sick or tired because of the bags under your eyes.

Either way, once you understand what causes those dark smudges, maybe you’ll have a little better insight into what to look for in treatments. By the end of this article, you’ll know what causes them and how to remove the dark circles for good.

What Causes Dark Undereye Circles?

There are many different causes but the main ones are lack of sleep, vitamin deficiencies, genetics, allegies, and age. What you need to do to get rid of the dark circles under your eyes depends upon which reason is causing you to look like you’ve gone a round with Mike Tyson. Let’s get into that now.

Age

As you get older, your skin thins and your collagen levels drop. This means that two different things can cause age-related dark circles under your eyes. First, because your skin’s thinner, the veins are going to be more visible. Thinning skin, along with genetics, is one of the harder causes of dark circles to treat because it isn’t an actual skin flaw, nor is it something that cosmetic surgery can really address.

The reduction in collagen production causes your facial tissues to sag, which in turn causes a hollow spot under your eyes. There are a couple of ways to treat this, depending upon how bad your sagging is. Using products with retinol can help, and there are now products that may actually increase collagen production. Injectable fillers or even plastic surgery are also options but be sure to use a board-certified doctor. We’ve got a great series of articles on injectable fillers if you’d like to learn more.

If you’d like to try a cream formulated to eliminate dark circles, Click here to get a great deal on Kate Somerville’s CytoCell Dark Corrective Eye Cream.

Lack of Sleep

If you regularly sleep less than 4-5 per night, it’s going to catch up with you. Your body uses your sleeping hours to rebuild and heal, so if you’re not sleeping, your body isn’t regenerating and taking care of the “maintenance” issues. One of the visible symptoms of this is saggy skin under your eyes, as well as thin skin. You may recognize this as the same issues that we just discussed in regards to the signs of aging. Take heed because these dark circles caused by lack of sleep can become permanent!

These kinds of dark eye circles are easy to treat though. Apply something cool such as a bag of frozen peas for a few minutes, or place a cold spoon on the dark spot until it gets warm. You can also try cucumber. Also, sleep on your back instead of your stomach so that fluid doesn’t pool in your facial area while you sleep.

Anemia

Anemia, aka an iron deficiency, can cause dark circles under your eyes. There are several other symptoms of anemia as well including pale gums. If you suspect an iron deficiency, you should talk to your doctor to determine the cause. Click here to to find some really good iron supplements at affordable prices. You may want to consider adding spinach or other iron-rich foods to your diet, too.

Adrenal Fatigue and Kidney Problems

Your adrenal glands sit on top of your kidneys and control numerous functions. They’re responsible at least in part for balancing electrolytes, controlling metabolism, and producing hormones including sex hormones. They’re also responsible for adrenaline and in a world riddled with stress, your adrenal glands are often overworked. One of the symptoms of adrenal fatigue is dark circles under your eyes.

Many Eastern medicines believe that dark circles can be a sign of poor kidney function. Because both your kidneys and adrenal glands are important for your health, and arguably your survival, you should speak to your doctor if the dark circles under your eyes appear for no reason and don’t disappear within a few days.

Allergies

Both food and airborne allergies can cause congestion that leads to increased blood flow, and thus enlarged veins, to your nose. These enlarged veins can become visible through the thin skin under your eyes and cause a dark appearance. You can try allergy medications but these can cause poor sleep which we already know makes the dark circles under your eyes worse.

Instead, try a neti pot. This is a teapot-looking little tool that’s used to clean out your sinuses. This will reduce the congestion and thus the need for increased blood flow. Click here to find a neti pot starter kit that has everything that you need to get rid of the dark circles under your eyes.

Final Word

Dark undereye circles make you look tired and old. Because there are so many things that can cause them, there really isn’t one treatment that’s a blanket cure for them. You need to figure out what’s causing the appearance of the smudges before you can effectively treat them. Once you figure that out, you’re well on your way to getting back your bright eyes and young, healthy appearance!

If you’ve had problems with dark circles under your eyes, please let us know what worked for you and what didn’t in the comments section below.


L’Oreal Revitalift Repair 10 BB Cream Review

Does This Blemish Balm stand Up To Its Asian Sisters?

Have you noticed that L’Oreal added a bb cream to their European Revitalift line but aren’t sure whether you need it or not?

For that matter, you may not even be sure what a bb cream is. With a full vanity, do you really need to add another product to your anti-aging routine? The answer is maybe.

Throughout the next few paragraphs we’re going to discuss exactly what place L’Oreal’s Revitalift Repair 10 BB Cream may have in your program. We’ll also take a look at what’s in it to see if it’s worth your time and money.

What Do They Claim?

L’Oreal claims that their blemish balm acts in 10 different ways to keep you looking young, refreshed, and perfect. Let’s review what those 10 ways are. The bb cream supposedly:

  • Reduces the appearance of wrinkles
  • makes your skin feel firmer
  • Conceals flaws
  • Enhances skin tone
  • Evens you skin’s surface
  • Hydrates your skin for up to a full day
  • Brightens your complexion
  • Protects your skin from sun damage
  • Covers age spots
  • Makes you skin soft and smooth

In other words, this bb cream performs the function of primer, moisturizer, concealer, foundation, sunscreen, blemish reducer, and anti-aging cream. That means that you could make some serious space on your vanity and knock some time off of your routine if the Revitalift Repair 10 BB Cream really works.

What’s In It?

The first few ingredients in the blemish balm are your standard emollients, water, and smoothing agents. Then come a few different kinds of sunscreen that protect you from both UVA and UVB rays. Other ingredients include salicylic acid and limonene, ingredients that may help even your skin tone and promote firmness. There are several different powerful antioxidants as well as substances suspected to increase collagen production.

There are two major youth restoring compounds in this bb cream; retinyl palmitate and acetyl trifluoromethylphenyl valylglycine. Retinyl Palmitate is a form of vitamin a that is converted to retinol, the biggest gun in wrinkle fighting.

The advantage of vitamin A using it in this form is that it’s less irritating, but it also may be less effective. Acetyl trifluoromethylphenyl valylglycine is comprised of hyaluronic acid and other agents known to retain moisture, improve skin tone and possibly increase production of collagen.

This blemish balm contains titanium dioxide that, though often used as a sunscreen, is used in this product as a tint. There also other dyes that would add color to the cream. Finally, there are several moisturizers and at least one product, mica used to refract light in order to add luminosity and reduce the appearance of dark circles, age spots, and sallowness.

What Do Users Say?

Overall, users really like this bb cream. Here are a few of the most common comments offered by users.

  • Goes on smoothly
  • Offers some coverage of minor flaws
  • Gives skin a soft feel
  • Adds luminosity that helps skin appear even
  • Colors are good without too much orange or pink
  • Blends well so that it looks natural
  • May help tighten skin and reduce the appearance of wrinkles
  • Provides enough coverage to even your skin without feeling heavy
  • Doesn’t feel greasy
  • Makes you skin look fresh and dewy

There aren’t any real negatives but there are a few points that some people made as ways that the blemish balm could be improved.

  • Doesn’t offer the total, opaque coverage that traditional Asian bb creams offer
  • Is scented but not heavily
  • There aren’t many shades

Final Word

L’Oreal’s Revitalift Repair 10 BB Cream seems to be living up to its claims. If you are extremely fair or dark then you may have a problem finding a shade that matches your skin but most people seem to really enjoy the way that the cream makes their skin look and feel.

As long as you’re not looking for a product that offers total coverage, you may really want to consider using this cream to replace your daytime moisturizer, sunscreen, anti-aging serum, concealer, primer, and foundation.

Try it first, then let us know what you think of it in the comments section below! Click here to find the best deal on Revitalift Repair 10 BB Cream now and don’t forget to tell us how you like it!


What Is This BB Cream That Everyone’s Talking About?

BB Cream: What Is It, Do You Need It, and How Do You Use It?

Have you been hearing the term “bb cream” bandied about but have no idea what it means?

If so, then join the crowd. This latest, supposedly greatest addition to the beauty scene is really making a splash, but it’s hard to spend your money on yet another face cream when you don’t even know what it is.

Well pull up a chair because by the end of this article, you’re not only going to know what it is, you’ll know how to use bb cream, and what ingredients to look for. Finally, we’ll discuss some of the bess bb creams and you’ll get some links to affordable products.

Let’s get started!

What is BB Cream and Where Does it Come From?

BB cream is short for for blemish balm (some say brightening balm or beauty balm but the original term was blemish balm) and it appears to have originated in Korea. This product has been big business in Asia for more than a decade so it’s kinda surprising that it’s taken this long to hit the States and Europe.

Now to answer to real question – what is bb cream, REALLY? BB cream is a multi-purpose product that has both makeup and skincare properties. Depending upon which product you choose, some blemish balms also have wrinkle fighting properties or ingredients to help prevent or eliminate age spots and sun damage.

Typically, your beauty balm will:

  • Act as a primer for your foundation
  • Provide hydration and even your skin tone like a tinted moisturizer
  • Cover minor blemishes like a concealer
  • Brighten your complexion like a lightener or toner
  • Hydrate and protect you from sun damage like a good day cream

As we’ve already mentioned, it may have some youth-restoring or wrinkle fighting ingredients in it, too.

How Do You Use BB Cream?

The beauty of bb cream is that you can either use it alone to get a lightweight, natural-looking coverage or you can use your blemish balm as a moisturizing primer underneath your foundation. Depending upon the occasion and your particular beauty needs, either way is fine.

I like to use mine by itself during the day to even out my skin tone and get a nice, dewy glow. At night, I apply it under my foundation just like I used to use primer. I do use sunscreen underneath mine during the day though.

Picking the Best BB Cream

Choosing the best bb cream is just like choosing the right foundation or the perfect moisturizer. It’s all a matter of perspective and depends on what your beauty needs are. A few things to remember, though:

  • BB cream usually only has a light tint and provides basically sheer coverage. If you have real problem spots such as age spots or acne, you may need concealer or full foundation.
  • There are limited shades available so choosing a bb cream that matches your skin tone exactly may be challenging. Watch the base colors because some of them tend to be pinker than others.
  • If your skin tends to be oily, choose a bb cream that won’t make your problem worse, or you may need to skip it altogether
  • Finally, choose a bb cream specifically formulated for your particular needs. Different blemish balms have different corrective qualities and are meant for different types of skin. Get one that meets your needs.

What Are The Best BB Creams?

There are many good blemish balms out there but finding the best bb cream among them is tough. Also, some of them are extremely pricey so if you’re not sure which one will match your tone, try to get a travel size if you can. That’s one of the reasons that I like the Missha BB creams; you can get minis to try before investing in a full-sized product.

The Missha BB Creams come in 4 different formulations in order to meet the needs of most people. The one created specifically for the needs of mature skin is their M Signature Real Complete BB Cream SPF 25. It comes in 3 different shades and doesn’t have a yellow cast to it.

Another great bb cream is SKIN79’s Oriental Gold Plus BB Cream. This is the one most suited for general anti-aging needs and it’s also fairly affordable.

Finally, if you’re like me and prefer to use botanical or natural products, you’re going to love BRTC’s bb creams. Specifically, BRTC’s Gold Caviar BB Cream is formulated to nourish mature skin while helping fight wrinkles, protect you from the sun, brighten your skin, and detoxify your pores while providing great coverage.

Final Word

As promised, you now know what bb cream is and how to choose the right bb cream for your skin. You also have some solid leads on some high-quality products so what are you still reading for? Go find the bb cream that’ll help you fight your individual youth-restoring battle in just one step!

If you’ve used any of these bb creams or have found one that you just can’t live without, please share your experience with us in the comments section below!


L’Oreal’s Youth Code BB Cream Illuminator Review

Is It the All-In-One Code to Younger Skin?

Do you like the appearance of flawless skin but don’t want to wear a heavy foundation?

Maybe you’re just tired of needing 3 or 4 different products to make your skin look great.

If so, L’Oreal claims to have just the product for you. Their Youth Code BB Cream Illuminator is the latest in the L’Oreal skincare line targeting imperfect complexions and aging skin.

What Do They Claim?

L’Oreal claims that this product offers the best of both the skincare and makeup worlds so that you can have the best complexion possible. Let’s talk for a minute about what exactly a BB cream is. Originally from Asia, BB technically stands for Blemish Balm (some also say Beauty Balm or Brightening Balm) but it doesn’t necessarily have to be targeted specifically at blemishes.

A good BB cream is a combination of primer, moisturizer, concealer, day cream, and sometimes a sunscreen, too. It evens your skin tone, covers minor blemishes, and hydrates. The one that we’re looking at today also claims anti-aging properties.

The Youth Code BB Cream Illuminator performs 5 different functions to make your skin look amazing in just one simple step. It moisturizes, covers blemishes, illuminates, evens your skin tone, and protects your skin. You’ll see an improvement in the tone and texture of your skin in just one week.

The product comes in two shades that supposedly match automatically to your tone. They appear medium to dark in appearance though, and I’m curious to see what people with fair skin have to say about the Youth Code BB Cream. First though, let’s take a look at the ingredients list.

What’s In It?

One of the reasons that I like L’Oreal is because they offer full disclosure on their ingredients so that users can research their products before they buy. This particular product has some really good products in it so we’ll start with those. First is the fact that it has 2 different sunscreens, octinoxate and titanium dioxide, in it. That’s always a good thing.

Next, there are several vitamins and antioxidants in the Youth Code BB Cream. They claim that it had vitamin B3 (Niacinimide) and vitamin CG, which is a concentrated, slow release form of vitamin C. Both of these products are helpful in fighting free radicals, retaining moisture, and reducing redness and both are actually in the Youth Code BB Cream.

L’Oreal also claims that there’s Pro-Cysteine and Recoverine in this product, and there is. Pro-Cysteine is an amino acid which, in a nutshell, helps reduce oxidation and free radical damage to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Recoverine helps your skin shed dead layers and promotes growth of healthy skin. It’s a product of chestnuts so if you’re allergic to tree nuts, this may irritate your skin.

In addition to these goodies, there’s also vitamin E, caffeine, and several other moisturizers and emollients that would make your skin feel good. Hyaluronic acid is in there, but it’s the next to last ingredient so it probably doesn’t contribute much.

In addition to all of the good stuff, there are also a few different heavy metals (magnesium aluminum silicate, lithium magnesium sodium silicate to name 2) in this product so if that concerns you, you may want to skip it. Most people don’t mind, but now you know and can decide for yourself.

What Are Users Saying?

For the most part, people like this cream. Remember that it’s more of a lightly tinted moisturizer than a foundation, but that’s what it’s supposed to be. It’s extremely hydrating so if you have oily skin, this may work well for you in the winter but you my find it a little too moisturizing for summer use.

Some people complain that it’s got a significant scent so if that bothers you, you may want to try a sample first. The tones seem to match most users well and it evens out skin tone, too. Finally, people seem to like the light feel of the product and it doesn’t feel oily. Nobody’s really commented on an wrinkle-reducing benefits.

Final Word

For the price, this BB cream seems to do a good job. It’s light, moisturizing, provides a good base for your foundation, has a light tint if you want to wear it alone, and covers up minor blemishes and adds a brightness to your skin as well. It does have UVA and UVB protection, but not from the long UVB rays that cause damage, so make sure to use a sunscreen with it.

I’ve searched the net for the best deals on this cream so Click here to compare prices on L’Oreal’s Youth Code BB Cream Illuminator.

If you’ve tried this product, let us know what you think of it in the comments section below.


Makari Caviar Face Lightening Cream Review

An All-Natural Way to Young, Even-Colored Skin

Would you like to get rid of discolorations, dry spots, liver spots, and dullness?

Makari, a Swiss company that produces high quality, hydroquinone-free complexion enhancing formulas, has a product that may just be for you, especially if you have dry skin.

Their Caviar Face Lightening Cream caught my eye because at first glance it’s formulated to improve moisture, skin texture, and tone so that you have younger looking, healthy skin. After researching a bit, I discovered that they manufacture products specifically for people with darker skin tones.

What Do They Claim?

According to Makari, this cream is made to make your skin look younger and brighter by providing nourishment and moisture while it reduces the appearance of age spots, liver spots, and dull skin. The caviar extract in it improves the texture of your skin and restores the moisture balance. This product is formulated specifically for people with dry skin but people of all skin tones seem to benefit from it.

According to the website, you’ll “discover a smoother, more youthful look and feel after just one application of this remarkably effective, corrective, and preventative complex”.

That’s some pretty hefty talk, especially considering the fact that the Caviar Face Cream is supposedly made of natural ingredients. Let’s take a look at the ingredients to see if they support these claims.

What’s In It?

The first few ingredients are actually just stabilizers and emollients. Then come the really good things. There’s escin, aka horse chestnut, which helps boost collagen and other skin structures. There’s white lily extract, tenuiflora extract, salicylic acid, jojoba, and dog rose hips oil that all help with healing and/or lightening in one way or another. There’s also arbutin, a natural, effective lightener.

The caviar extract, allantoin, and hyaluronic acid, along with squalane and other moisturizers help hold moisture in your skin so that it stays plump and hydrated, eliminating fine lines caused by dehydration.

What Do Users Say?

Users with dry skin tend to really like this product. Smaller pores, clearer skin, and improved suppleness along with a nice, moist feeling and lightening of up to 3 shades were all regularly reported. Users were of all skin tones from pale to Asian, to dark. The common thread was that people who had success with the product all had dry skin.

People with oily skin frequently reported breakouts that ranged from mild, random pimples to an all-over rash.

Final Word

Though this is promoted as a product for people with darker skin, the ingredients make it great for use by anybody looking for a product that offers a ton of moisturizing, anti-aging, and lightening ingredients. Truly, it appears to be one of the best products out there for this combination of problems.

You can buy the face lightening cream from Makari’s website but I’ve taken the time to find some better prices for you. Click here to find the best prices on Makari’s Caviar Face Lightening Cream.

If you’ve tried this product, let us know what you think of it in the comments section below.


Clinique Even Better Dark Spot Corrector Review

Will Your Age Spots Disappear?

Would you like to find a serum that does more than just cover up your age spots, discolorations, and acne scars?

What if somebody invented a product that would actually get rid of acne marks instead of just hiding them?

Clinique claims to have created exactly what you’re looking for. Their Even Better Clinical Dark Spot Corrector supposedly works as well as a prescription to eliminate age spots, dark spots, and acne scars.

Let’s take a closer look to see if this product is actually worth the money.


What Do They Claim?

According to Clinique, this oil-free serum has been proven in clinical trials to lighten age spots, dark spots and “traces of acne past”. They say that clinical trials verified a 53% improvement in skin tone in only 12 weeks.

Supposedly, the ingredients in this product are as effective as a leading prescription ingredient, though they don’t say which one. The assumption, though is that they’re referring to hydroquinone. Finally, Clinique claims that it’s safe and effective for all skin tones and for sensitive skin.

The claims all sound great to me and Clinique guarantees results, but I’m a bit skeptical about the claim that it’s as good as a prescription product. Let’s take a look at the ingredients to see what’s actually in this serum.

What’s In It?

Let me begin by saying that Clinique, along with Origins and Estee Lauder, is one of the few companies that refuses to post their ingredients anywhere online. It’s a horrible policy and is the main reason that you won’t see many Clinique reviews on this site. I can’t review it if I don’t know what’s in it but maybe that’s the point. That being said, I did find a list posted for this product by a reliable independent source so here we go.

Clinique’s Even Better Clinical Dark Spot Corrector has some surprisingly good anti-aging products in it including Vitamin E, hyaluronic acid, and several different root extracts known for their antioxidant properties.

There’s also ascorbyl glucoside which is probably what they’re attributing the reduction of age spots to. It’s a form of vitamin C that breaks down into L-ascorbic acid, which is known to be a highly potent antioxidant as well as a coenzyme that works to promote collagen synthesis and inhibit melanin synthesis. Melanin is the pigment in your skin and is thus what makes your dark spots dark. There’s also grapefruit peel extract which offers another dose of vitamin C.

Other active ingredients include caffeine, salycilic acid, yeast extract, and several different emollients and stabilizers.

What Are Users Saying?

User reviews on this product are mixed but it seems that people who have light sun spots or age spots that use it for an extended period of time have the best results. People with dark acne spots or age spots, or those looking for instant results were frequently disappointed though there was the random person who reported significant reduction in really dark spots, or who noticed quick results.

Most people did report that skin was softer and texture was better, and that it felt light on. The majority of people who claim to have sensitive skin are using it without a problem, too.

Final Word

I think that if you’re looking for a non-prescription product to help with minor spots, you may enjoy this product as long as you’re willing to use it diligently and give it time to work.

Remember that Clinique doesn’t promise that your spots will disappear completely; they only state that their trials showed significant improvement. To be fair, most people do report that much at least. Since the product is guaranteed, you really don’t have anything to lose by trying it.

I’ve done your research for you to find the best deals on this product. Click here to find great prices on Clinique’s Even Better Dark Spot Corrector.

If you’ve tried this product, tell us about your experience in the comments section below.