Oh boy, this review is quite late! I first received these products in December, but my skincare backlog has been so backed up, that I only got to try out the Aveeno Fresh Essentials line recently.
Designed as a gentle approach to clear, radiant skin, the Fresh Essentials line utilizes the power of nature with the antioxidant benefits of southernwood flowers and vitamins A and E. The Fresh Essentials line covers all your basic skin care needs, by including a daily cleanser, moisturizer and night cream. I've only tried a couple Aveeno products in the past as they're a little higher end at drugstores, but the ones I have tried I've enjoyed as they've always been very gentle on my skin. Plus, their spokeswoman is Jennifer Aniston who is the epitome of natural, wholesome beauty! After all the different things I throw onto my skin everyday, I was eager to try out a skincare line that seemed to hearken back to simpler, pure ingredients and a gentle approach to cleansing.
Aveeno Fresh Essentials Daily Exfoliating Scrub
The Product: The Aveeno Fresh Essentials Daily Exfoliating Scrub is an exfoliating facial scrub that sloughs away dead skin cells, dirt and impurities thoroughly, yet gently enough to be used daily. This scrub claims to contain natural luffa and coconut pulp as its main exfoliants.
- Glycerin - a moisturizer
- Ammonium lauryl sulfate - a foaming and cleansing ingredient derived from coconut
- Polyethylene - a form of plastic, aka microbeads that form the main exfoliating grain in this scrub. While harmless to your skin, these are known to be extremely harmful to the environment as they wash downstream and into water systems where they can be eaten by fish and other creatures.
- Glyceryl stearate - thickens the product and acts as a surfactant and moisture capturing ingredient
Price & Packaging: A 145 ml tube costs around $13 at local drugstores like London Drugs and Walmart. The price and packaging of this product are pretty standard and of good value. I love squeeze tubes and this one isn't so big that you couldn't pack it easily away for travel, although not in a carry-on of course.
Effectiveness: Unfortunately, because of the polyethylene, I couldn't bring myself to properly test this scrub and had to trash it (which in itself is probably questionable). I did try it twice though just for this review and found it to be a gentle scrub with little fragrance that I can recall. It didn't leave my skin feeling tingly, nor particularly renewed as one might expect after a good exfoliation, but considering this is meant as a daily scrub, I wasn't expecting too much. My guess would be that this would be more effective when used over the long haul.
Final Verdict: Ditch
Aveeno Fresh Essentials Daily Moisturizer
The Product: The Aveeno Fresh Essentials Daily Moisturizer is a light, oil-free daytime moisturizer containing SPF 30. Light, moisturizing, SPF - all these things are my must-haves for a daytime lotion so I was feeling pretty good about trying this one out. Besides the star ingredient southernwood, this moisturizer also contains vitamins A, C and E for extra age-fighting powers.
- Artemisia abrotanum extract - aka southernwood extract, which Aveeno claims to have antioxidant properties. I couldn't find a lot of supporting evidence to this claim.
- Butylene glycol - a common solvent
- Caesalpinia spinosa gum - a thickener and skin conditioner
- Candelilla/jojoba/rice bran polyglyceryl-3 esters - an emulsifier and stabilizer that helps keep the product together
I'm so impressed that Aveeno made their star ingredient the FIRST ingredient in this product! That is so rare for any brand to do, so I really want to point it out here.
Price & Packaging: A 75 ml tube retails for around $20. As I mentioned, Aveeno is a little pricier for a drugstore brand, but in terms of packaging, it's sturdy, functional and doesn't feel cheap.
Effectiveness: I gotta say, this face cream is great! It ticks off everything on my list for a daytime moisturizer. It's deeply nourishing to my skin, but isn't so rich that it feels too heavy in springtime weather. A little goes a long way as well as it's very easy to spread, but I do prefer to layer a little generously to ensure even SPF coverage. There's a very faint floral fragrance to this lotion, but it dissipates quickly. While I think the Aveeno Fresh Essentials Daily Moisturizer is a solid basic product, I do have to say that I didn't notice any increased radiance or significant anti-aging effects, so if you're specifically looking for that, then I wouldn't bother with this one. If you are however in the market for a decent moisturizer with SPF that keeps your skin soft and doesn't make you break out, then this is a winner.
Final Verdict: Buy
Aveeno Fresh Essentials Hydrating Night Cream
The Product: The Aveeno Fresh Essentials Hydrating Night Cream is the powerhouse of the Fresh Essentials line as it's while we sleep that our skincare products can penetrate and work most deeply. This rich night cream contains southernwood extract, as well as vitamins A, C and E.
- Octyldodecyl neopentanoate - an emollient that helps give this product structure and helps oily compositions feel less slippery
- Dicaprylyl carbonate - an emollient that helps other ingredients penetrate skin more easily, while protecting the skin from moisture loss by creating a protective barrier. It also makes the product feel light and spread easily without leaving behind any greasy residue.
- Glycerin - a moisturizer
- Candelilla/jojoba/rice bran polyglyceryl-3 esters
This cream also contains mango seed butter (moisturizing), panthenol (moisturizing) and retinyl palmitate (anti-aging).
Price & Packaging: A 49 ml jar retails for around $20, which isn't a bad price at all for a night cream. Unfortunately, I've read that jars are not good containers for anti-aging products as all the antioxidants will evaporate away, so I try to keep the lid on as much as possible. True to the ingredients, this cream feels light and creamy. It spreads easily and coats my skin in a protective layer of moisture, yet doesn't feel greasy or tacky. You definitely need very very little product per use, which gives this product great value. I usually just lightly skim a finger across the cream's surface and I get enough product to cover one cheek. Similar to the day cream, I think if you're just looking for a moisturizer that doesn't feel too heavy, then this would be a good option. I would definitely recommend this for teenagers with dry, sensitive skins as it feels very gentle and isn't heavy. If you're like me though and you're wanting a bit more oomph to your nightly skincare, then this cream comes up lacking.
Final Verdict: Buy
What are your thoughts on the Fresh Essentials line - does it work for you?