Pros: Will work well without foundation for those that have perfect skin; no animal testing
Cons: Doesn't work well over foundation; too subtle; too much iridescence and not enough glow
About a month and a half ago, I was walking around my favorite mall when I passed by The Body Shop. A friend had just started communicating with me about her new career with The Body Shop At Home, so I already had heard a bit about their products. A big red "SALE" sign caught my eye as I was walking by - and I decided to go in and have a look! What I found once inside were huge baskets of products on clearance and on sale. One of these things was the Glow Enhancer, on sale for "4 For $10". For just $2.50, how could I pass this up? Who am I to pass up anything with the word glow in it?
Glow Enhancer is a liquid "skin-brightening" product that resembles a lotion. Applied to the face alone or over foundation, it claims to brighten the skin and add radiance.
This product comes in a 1 oz. opaque, white-ish plastic bottle and has a black plastic cap that screws off and on. The bottle is somewhat tall at 4.5" in length including the cap. The Body Shop logo is embossed into the plastic near the bottom of the bottle. This product does not have a pump dispenser. To dispense the product, you can either pour a bit of the lotion out or you can put your finger over the bottle opening and then tip the bottle upside down to get some of the product on your finger.
The Glow Enhancer itself is a fairly thin, milky white lotion. If you hold it to the light, it has an iridescent violet glow. It reminds me of mother-of-pearl in a way, but without several colors - just violet. There is no shimmer or sparkle at all in this product. Glow Enhancer has a very subtle (and almost unnoticeable) scent and smells like a mild hand lotion.
Product Claims (taken from TheBodyShop.com):
Brighten your skin in an instant with Glow Enhancer. Simply apply to either bare skin or layer over foundation. Each Adaptor shade offers a different, subtle-looking sheen, with light reflective, iridescent pearls to add radiance. Play it cool with Violet.
Ingredients (taken from packaging):
Water, octyl palmitate, cyclomethicone, propylene glycol dicaprylate/dicaprate, glycerin, manula oil, methyl methacrylate crosspolymer, silica, steareth-2, phenoxyethanol, steareth-20, benzyl alcohol, boron nitride, tocopheryl acetate, methylparaben, magnesium aluminum silicate, panthenol, ceteareth-20, dimethicone, phenyl trimethicone, sodium acrylate/sodium acryloyldimethyl taurate copolymer, propylparaben, isohexadecane, xantham gum, butylparaben, disodium EDTA, ethylparaben, polysorbate 80, tin oxide, isobutylparaben, sodium hyaluronate, sorbitan oleate, titanium dioxide, mica.
First, I want to say that I don't know what The Body Shop means by "Adaptor shade" - I was told by the sales associate at The Body Shop that this product comes in just the one shade - and that is all that is picture on their website and in their The Body Shop brochure/catalog. We will assume for now that this product comes in just the one shade and formula.
I was excited to use this product, as I am with every new beauty product that I purchase. I'm always excited at the prospect of more glow for my face as well. I wasn't sure if I should use this product under foundation or over foundation - it didn't come with a label, a box, instructions or anything! The only label it has is a TINY label on the bottom that folds out to list the ingredients and the amount of product in the container. It was just shrink-wrapped and sealed with clear plastic. I experimented and tried it several different ways before I got online and saw that The Body Shop wants you to use this over your foundation.
I first tried this product under my foundation. After cleansing and moisturizing my skin, I dispensed a small amount and applied it to my facial skin like I apply my moisturizer. I then applied my foundation. The effect? Nothing. Couldn't even see a difference. I scrapped that method quickly!
The next method of using this product was to apply it over my foundation. I didn't like the prospect of rubbing this all over my face with my foundation on! I did it though - and boy, was I sorry! Even in very small amounts, it diluted my foundation and made it uneven. Ugh! It was horrible. I got a bit of a violet iridescence, but not much in the actual glow department. Did it make my skin look brighter? No. It just made my face look a bit shiny - and the violet shading is a bit much. It's not a completely violet look though - it just has that "turn your face to the light and you can see the violet iridescence" look. I don't like it - and it takes FOREVER to "set" or dry. After applying Glow Enhancer over my foundation, I realized that I needed to find a better way to use this product.
The last method that I tried is the one that I currently use exclusively - and it's the only practical way. I dispense a small amount and tap it lightly around my eyes. It still takes a while to dry - but it does give a bit of iridescence around the eye area, which is really the only area (along with my cheeks) where I want that type of a look anyway. It also adds a bit of a dewiness to the skin, and applying face powder over the Glow Enhancer then sort of diminishes both the dewiness and the dewiness. Another note about application: In order to even see the effect of the Glow Enhancer, it must be applied fairly thickly. Applying a very thin layer will not get you anything. But it's still important to apply it fairly thinly so that it doesn't take forever to dry.
I find that the effect of the Glow Enhancer lasts nearly all day. It sort of wears off along with my foundation. This product does not irritate my skin or cause oiliness or dryness. My skin is combination, with my nose being the only oily area of my face - so I just keep it off my nose, and everything is OK.
Overall, this is just a difficult product to use. The effect is just a bit too subtle when used under foundation, difficult to apply when used over foundation, difficult to use with a face powder, and the violet shade is just a bit too strange for everyday use. It's an OK eye and cheek enhancer, but it's a "catch 22" thing - you don't want to apply it thickly, but you sort of need to in order to see it.
I have no idea why this product was on clearance in my The Body Shop store. It was sealed and completely full, and it's still a current product being offered in their The Body Shop At Home catalogs as well as their website.
Price and Purchasing Information:
Glow Enhancer is normally $12.50. It can be purchased through a The Body Shop At Home Independent Consultant (email me if you need the name and email address of the two consultants I know), or at a The Body Shop brick and mortar store for $12.50 as well. I have not seen it available for purchase online (it can't be purchased at TheBodyShop.com currently).