28 June 2016

Product Review: IT Cosmetics Your Skin But Better™ CC Cream

As you may know, I am on a mission. I must find a foundation for my 50+ sensitive, breakout-prone skin that gives me at least medium coverage without looking like I've applied it with a trowel. I would like it to look as natural as possible (not matte or luminous), last at least 6-8 hours without migrating off my face, and not settle into lines and pores making me look years older than my actual age. Apparently, this is a lot to ask. Many foundations claim to do all of these things, but very few actually deliver.

UPDATE 11/29/16: Please note that I no longer recommend IT Cosmetics®. I had an issue with the pump on the CC Cream that I purchased on 11/1/16. It took well over 100 pumps to get any product to start coming out of it, and after that, it would only sputter sporadically, spraying CC Cream on my clothes and carpet. I stored the product with the pump side down, and I also milked the tube to encourage the product towards the pump. This was not my first tube of CC Cream, plus I work with airless pumps in my own business, so I know how they work. When I contacted IT Cosmetics, they told me that I could exchange the product for a new one, but I would be responsible for all return shipping charges. When I questioned having to pay to return a defective product, they gave me a long explanation of how an airless pump worked. They said that I needed to press it 30-40 times to get the product flowing, and occasionally there would be an air pocket. I should rest assured - my product was not faulty, it was working just fine! I'm not sure if I've ever been more insulted.

I'm amazed that a company the size of this one does not provide return shipping labels or some other recourse when there is a defective product. I would never pay to return a defective product. I will never do business with them again, and I plan to update my IT Cosmetics reviews to reflect their policy on returns for defective products.

I do realize that they were just purchased by L'Oreal, and that you can buy their products at Ulta and Sephora. I'm sure if you purchased at Ulta or Sephora, there would be no issue with an exchange or return. But for me, it's now the principle. I will not give my money to a company that treats me this way. And yes, I realize I'm not hurting L'Oreal at all, and that L'Oreal owns a truckload of companies. Maybe, just maybe, if there are enough complaints, they will change the policy on the main IT Cosmetics website.

Product Review: IT Cosmetics Your Skin But Better™ CC Cream - this claims to be a full coverage color correcting cream, anti-aging serum, and broad spectrum physical-only SPF 50+ all-in-one product, but I didn't find all of those claims to be true - at least not for me. However, I still like this product! I just had to change my expectations of what it could do - and it does have a lot of good qualities!
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My foundation-quest led me to Your Skin But Better™ CC Cream by IT Cosmetics. I had heard a lot of good things about it - but, of course, that didn't mean it would work well for me. (If you want to read more about my skin type and issues, you can find that here.) They also have a foundation (Bye Bye Foundation™ Full Coverage Moisturizer™), but I wanted to try the CC Cream first since it was available in a travel size for $15 as opposed to the $65 for the full-size foundation.

The CC Cream says it's a full coverage color correcting cream, anti-aging serum, and broad spectrum physical-only SPF 50+ all-in-one product. When I read reviews, they were mixed - as are most reviews. What concerned me the most was the ingredient list. While it has a lot of good things, it also contains several things that could potentially be irritating - and I have sensitive skin. The potential irritants: lemon peel oil, orange peel oil, lime oil, grapefruit peel oil, eucalyptus leaf oil, and cinnamon bark extract.

Here is a list of the ingredients:
Water, Snail Secretion Filtrate, Butylene Glycol, Phenyl Trimethicone, Dimethicone, Butylene Glycol Dicaprylate/Dicaprate, Orbignya Oleifera Seed Oil, Butyloctyl Salicylate, Cetyl PEG/PPG-10/1 Dimethicone, Cyclopentasiloxane, Cyclohexasiloxane, Magnesium Sulfate, Polyglyceryl-4 Isostearate, Dimethicone/Vinyl Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Aluminum Hydroxide, Hexyl Laurate, Stearic Acid, Calcium Stearate, Caprylyl Glycol, Triethoxycaprylylsilane, Ethylhexylglycerin, Phenoxyethanol, Citrus Medica Limonum (Lemon) Peel Oil, Tocopheryl Acetate, Sorbitan Isostearate, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergamot) Fruit Oil, 1,2-Hexanediol, Disodium EDTA, Citrus aurantium dulcis (orange) peel oil, Citrus Aurantifolia (Lime) Oil, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Oil, Punica Granatum Seed Oil, Pinus Sylvestris Leaf Oil, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Niacinamide, Citrus Grandis (Grapefruit) Peel Oil, Anthemis Nobilis Flower Water, Lactobacillus/Honeysuckle Flower/Licorice Root/Morus Alba Root/Pueraria Lobata Root/Schizandra Chinensis Fruit/Scutellaria Baicalensis Root/Sophora Japonica Flower Extract Ferment Filtrate, Perfluorohexane, Olea Europaea (Olive) Leaf Extract, Glycerin, Eucalyptus Globulus Leaf Oil, Cholesteryl, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Chrysanthemum Indicum flower Extract, Pueraria Lobata Root Extract, Perfluorodecalin, Morus Alba Fruit Extract, Magnolia Kobus Bark Extract, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Sprout Extract, Diospyros Kaki Leaf Extract, Cinnamomum Cassia Bark Extract, Artemisia Princeps Leaf Extract, Pentafluoropropane, Curcuma Longa (Turmeric) Root Extract, Steareth-20, Hydrolyzed Hyaluronic Acid, Colloidal Oatmeal, Hydrolyzed Silk, Citric Acid, Sodium Benzoate, Potassium sorbate, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract, N-Hydroxysuccinimide, Hydrolyzed Collagen, Caprylhydroxamic Acid, Tocopherol, Thiamine HCl, Riboflavin, Retinyl Palmitate, Pantothenic Acid, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide, Niacin, Folic Acid, Chrysin, Carnitine HCl, Biotin, Ascorbic Acid, Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7, Chlorhexidine Digluconate. May Contain: Iron Oxides (CI 77492, CI 77491, CI 77499).

The scent is pretty strong when you open the tube and apply the product. This isn't from added fragrance, but from the oils. I also felt a cooling sensation upon application - much like when you use a menthol product - I assume that is the eucalyptus and/or cinnamon bark extract. I'm not fond of either the scent or the sensation. Luckily, they both go away fairly quickly.

IT Cosmetics Your Skin But Better™ CC Cream - I didn't find this to be a full coverage product, but I still like it a lot. I think it's a great everyday product!

The consistency of the CC cream is smooth and thin - kind of like creamy butter. It's easy to apply. When I first started using it, I applied with a rounded foundation brush, buffing it onto my skin. I assumed this was the best way since it was sold with a brush on QVC. In my opinion, this sheers out the product too much, so I ended up using more to get coverage. But if you're looking for the sheerest application, then this is definitely your method. After watching a video on the It Cosmetics website, I tried applying with my fingers (although I didn't apply nearly as much product as it appeared they did), and I was much happier with that application. I would like to note that no matter how I applied this product, in no way would I would ever consider this product full coverage - it's medium coverage at best, and that's if you do two thin applications. I found if I applied it too heavily (like they do in the video), it never "set", it just stayed tacky on my skin. And there is no way that it would have ever covered like it did in the video. I had a couple of tiny, mildly reddened areas that weren't covered by two applications of the CC Cream, yet their larger, much darker reddened areas were easily covered by just one application. Go figure.

Let's discuss color. Obviously I should've gone to Ulta and tested the colors. But there was a deal online, so I made my best guess and ordered. There are five shades: Fair, Light, Medium, Tan, & Rich. I decided not to go for Fair because I knew I would be using sunless tanner soon. So I got the next shade, Light. Looking at the pictures online, this still appears to be a, well, light, product. When I got it, I was surprised to see just how dark, and how "peach" it was...even sporting a sunless tan, it's just not quite the right tone. I don't really have any peach tones in my skin, even when I use sunless tanner. I'm more on the beige/yellow end of the spectrum. I know Fair would be too light with a sunless tanner, and Medium might be a better tone, but it would probably be too dark. I don't really want to have to buy two to mix. The one thing that saves it is the fact that it does seem to meld with the skin and sort of take on the hue of your skin. So even though it looks like it's the wrong shade, once it's on, it doesn't look nearly as "off". Don't even get me started on the concealer (that will be a separate post).

In the photo below, you can see the CC Cream (in the shade Light) on the back of my hand. I do not have any sunless tanner on, and that is a slightly faded burn mark you see next to the CC Cream. In this photo, you can tell that the Light shade definitely has peach undertones.

I found the Light shade of IT Cosmetics Your Skin But Better™ CC Cream to have peach undertones and to be darker than I expected, but the formula is also sheerer than I expected, so it tends to take on the tone of your skin.

In the photo below, I have applied the CC Cream onto the area of my hand with the burn mark just as I would to my face - concentrating it on that specific area. You can see that it really didn't cover it much at all, even though when you watch their video, it covers everything on their faces. You can also see that the peachy tones aren't nearly as noticeable once the cream is applied, although it's certainly not a perfect match.

I would've preferred a little more coverage from IT Cosmetics Your Skin But Better™ CC Cream - I definitely did not get the coverage they showed in the video on the website. But I still like the product!

Now I know that, so far, it probably sounds like I hate this foundation. I don't! I actually like it! I just want to be honest and say that, in my opinion, it doesn't live up to it's claims of being a full-coverage color-correcting cream. So if you go into it not expecting it to be those things, you won't be disappointed.

Here's how I got this foundation to work best for my 50+ year old skin:
After doing my usual morning routine, I applied some Laura Mercier Oil-Free Foundation Primer. Once that set, I used my fingertips to apply the Your Skin But Better ™ CC Cream, then patted my skin gently with a dampened Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Sponge to smooth out the CC Cream. For any areas that needed concealer, I used the corner of the sponge dipped into the Bye Bye Under Eye® Anti-Aging Concealer to lightly apply. I used a stippling brush to lightly dust Make Up For Ever HD Microfinish Powder over my face to get rid of any tackiness and make my pores less noticeable. Then once I finished my other makeup, I lightly misted my face with Urban Decay's All Nighter Makeup Setting Spray.

With this method, I was able to get the CC Cream to last a good 6-8 hours with minimal settling into my nasolabial folds. I definitely consider that a success! For the price, which is just a little more than half the cost of Koh Gen Do or Guerlain Lingerie de Peau, it's definitely something I would consider wearing on days I'm just hanging out at home or running quick errands.

The travel size of the CC Cream is 0.406 oz. for $15 and the full-size is 1.08 oz. for $38. In the video on the IT Cosmetics website, Jamie (the owner) says that because it's an all-in-one product, you can skip your anti-aging products, your sunscreen, and your primer - so you actually save money by using this. I'm not comfortable doing that. The anti-aging ingredients are at the bottom of the ingredient list, so it's difficult to tell how much are actually in the product - and almost no one uses enough foundation to equate to adequate sunscreen application (I know I don't). Also, without a separate primer, I get a lot more of that cooling/burning sensation when applying the cream. For all of those reasons, I'm just more comfortable maintaining my regular skin care routine with separate anti-aging products, sunscreen, and primer. But the option is there to skip them if you so desire.

Have you tried Your Skin But Better™ CC Cream? Did you like it?

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