Saturday, November 17, 2012

Lancome Bienfait Multi-Vital SPF 30 Cream

Winter is almost here and that means one major fact for me - I will end up buying a ton of new skincare items and will go through them like crazy.  Early last December, I ended up buying or ordering from Sephora almost every single weeek because I was running through skincare products like crazy and then I was finding that some of the ones that I bought just weren't hydrating enough for the winter and had to be put away until the spring months.  My goal is head this off at the pass this year and start picking up some new skincare items now, especially the heavy duy face creams that I always end up needing this time of the year and for the next three months.  I can already feel that my face is much drier than it was several weeks and is beginning to feel tight and dry right after I wash it.  And everyone who is reading this knows that it will only get worse in the upcoming weeks...

My first skincare purchase of the late fall/early winter months is the Lancome Bienfiar Multi-Vital SPF 30 Cream.  I first tried this product in a Sephora skincare sample bag and liked it enough to buy it the other week at the Lancome counter.  At first, I wasn't even sure what exactly this product was, the typing on the Sephora sample was very small and I couldn't make out if it was a SPF face cream or just a sunblock.  Once I first tried the product, I quickly figured out that it was a thick face cream that contained an SPF, it was much too thick for just an SPF and a product of this texture would be very hard to layer with another face cream. 

The best product description is found on the Lancome website.  "Containing a complex of nurturing Vitamins E, B5 and CG plus high potency moisturization, this greaseless formula provides 24-hour hydration. Your skin will look its healthy best and feel touchably soft all day. With Broad Spectrum SPF 30 sunscreen and essential antioxidant protection, Bienfait Multi-Vital gives your skin what it needs to help fight the visible effects of environmental skin damage.  Results: Skin is hydrated, looks its healthy best, and feels touchably soft all day.  Normal to dry skin, even sensitive skin.  Non-comedogenic. Dermatologist-tested for safety.  Recommended by the Skin Cancer Foundation." 

Anyone that has used French skincare before will have no problems understanding why this is a top selling face cream in that country.  To those who have not, I will provide a few more details.  This cream has a high SPF in it, higher than most that are available from major brands in the United States.  Most face creams don't really live up the SPF that is promised on the label, to achieve the full SPF benefits the product must be applied in a thick, even layer.  Most of use do not apply our face creams as thickly as they should be, especially those of us who layer foundation and concealer on yet too.  So if you use an SPF of 30, it is more at the 15 protection level and an SPF 15 is next to no protection.  Sorry to burst your bubbles everyone, but this is why I prefer to use separate sunscreen products for my face. 

French women are also more likely to prefer very rich hydrating products and this face cream certinaly lives up to that standard.  I would only recommend this for the driest of skin types, this cream is so thick that I had to warm it in my hand before applying it to my face in order to get it to fully absorb and this product could be overdone very easily.  I wouldn't recommend this face cream for those with normal skin, however I see on the Lancome website that it is available in a lighter lotion formula, so all the benefits can still be reaped with a lighter formula.

This cream contains many anti-oxidant protection benefits, I wouldn't list this as a solely anti-aging moisturizer.  It has the potential to help correct some of the signs of anging, however it is most powerful in preventing the signs and helping to brighten the overall complexion.  The vitamins and anti-oxidants helped to make my skin look a bit brighter, one of my favorite aspects of it when I first tried out my deluxe sample and that caused me to purchase the acutal product, my skin takes on a grayish pallor during the winter months and I will try any product that promises me some kind of brightening benefits.  The Vitamins E and B5 are mostly responsible for these benefits and are the major reason why I prefer anti-oxidant facial products over any other type of formulation.  This didn't deliver as dramatic a result as a traditional brightening serum would but it certainly help to make my skin looks clearer and healthier at this time of the year.  Maximum brightening benefits would be reached by using this product with a brightening serum at least once or twice a day.  I only use this product during the day since it contains the high SPF, there is no point in using this product at night. 

This is one of the first (if not the first) Lancome skincare product that I have used, mostly I go to this brand for fragrance or color.  I was happy enough with my deluxe sample to buy the full sized product after a week of use and I am looking forward to trying the other skincare products in the Bienfiat line.  I am already thinking ahead to the summer months and I am betting that I will buy the lotion version from this line.

photo courtesy of Sephora

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