Jergens Natural Glow Face or Body Moisturizer: Product Reviews. Is It Safe?
What are users saying about it?
Does Natural Glow give you a summer tan all year around, as advertised? Is it healthy for your skin? Does it tan without streaking? Is it greasy or does it absorb smoothly? From what I've seen of other reviews, it seems people either love or hate it. I haven't tried it myself (I love the "natural glow" of good times in the sun!) so my opinions are as objective and unbiased as an outside researcher's opinions can be. Here's the lowdown on Jergens Natural Glow Moisturizer for Face.
MakeUpAlley gives it an average rating of 2.9 out of 5.
EOpinions gives it an average of 3.5 of 5.
Most users got great results, describing their experience in truly glowing terms! "Didn't make my face orange or streaky," "great natural-looking tan," "made my skin moisturized," "inexpensive," "I could control the shade I wanted through the gradual increase of color," "saw great results after first try," "would recommend as great protection, moisturizer, and enhancer for darker (African-American) skin tones too." Some said that it eliminated the need for foundation or concealer because it evened out skin irregularities, and another said that it actually made some face scars disappear!
When compared with Coppertones Endless Summer, Jergens Natural Glow came out far ahead, with top recommendations on the list being its very natural, subtle tan with no orange tones and no streaks or stripes. The great thing about the positive reviews is that they tend to unconsciously echo the back of Jergens Natural Glow Face packaging:
"Jergens® natural glow Daily Moisturizer delivers an optimum amount of color to even out and enrich the appearance of your skin. Formulated with a unique blend of non-drying Erythrulose, DHA and essential moisturizers to gradually develop a soft, natural glow, without streaking or orange coloration often experienced with using a self-tanner. Simply moisturize your skin to keep a beautiful and natural glow. It comes in three different shades to complement your unique skin tone."
Though over 50% of reviewers had positive results and gave generally high recommendations, a close 40% had some very serious concerns and have declared that the product was a waste of money and they would not buy it again. The greatest of their problems seems to be the oily nature of the moisturizer, though Natural Glow claims to be oil-free. This may be due to one of the ingredients being a possible allergen (see "Health Warnings," below). "[Jergen's Natural Glow] made me break out in my T-zone," "caused breakouts," was "greasy." Those of us who struggle to keep clear skin would do best to stay away from Jergens Natural Glow Moisturizer for face, though the Natural Glow for body seems to be fine. There were enough reviews that claimed breakouts as a result of using the moisturizer that I would have serious qualms about using this on my own face. Most of us would rather have break-out-free pale skin than have glowing, throbbing skin, if we are prone to breakouts already. If your skin is generally clear, and dry more than oily, then you probably won't have any problems with breakouts.
Some reviewers did not have immediate results, others didn't get any results at all, or got a murky, muddy color if used every day instead of every other day, as the package recommends. "Took five to six applications before I saw results," "total waste of money," "wouldn't buy again," "everyday use made skin look muddy."
The smell seems to be another issue for reviewers. They didn't want to go around smelling like self-tanning cream all day, but they said Jergens is just like most other self-tanning products in that it has the typical self-tanner smell (though the newest product reportedly has no smell). Other downsides included burning if applied too close to eyes or on open skin, darkening of the palms or fingers that were used to apply the lotion to the face, and spending too much time and effort before results appear.
Don't be fooled by the word "natural" in the title. "Natural" applies to the shade of color that will shine from your face, not to the ingredients list. After the first ingredient, "water," most of us won't have a clue what the other chem-lab ingredients are:
Water, Ethylhexyl Isononanoate, Glycerin, Ceteareth-20, Dimethicone, Phenyl Trimethicone, Glyceryl Stearate, Erythrulose, Peg-100 Stearate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Stearic Acid, Cetyl Esters Wax, Polyacrylamide, C13-14 Isoparaffin, Laureth-7, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Aluminum Starch Octenylsuccinate, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Sodium Hydroxide, DMDM Hydantoin, Fragrance, Caramel, Dihydroxyacetone.
Though all ingredients must be called "safe" according to Cosmetic Ingredient Review before the product is introduced to stores and customers, there are still many causes for concern. Data found at the Environmental Skin Deep Cosmetic Safety Database gives insight into what Jergens won't tell you about their product.
In Jergens Natural Glow Moisturizer for Face, Ceteareth-20 (fourth ingredient from top) is probably used as a skin penetration enhancer. It is harmful if used near open skin, and showed adverse affects on test animals' nervous and sensory systems.
Peg-100 Stearate is probably used as a cleansing agent in this product. However, the Cosmetic Safety Database gave this ingredient a "moderate to high hazard" (rating of 7 out of 10, with 10 being highest hazard). The Peg-100 Stearate dangers included cancer, developmental/reproductive toxicity, organ system toxicity (non-reproductive), endocrine disruption, with skin or sense organ toxicity hazards suspected.
Tocopheryl Acetate is often used as a skin conditioning agent or an antioxidant. It ranks a 4 on the hazard scale, with warnings about cancer (mutation results on mammalian cells) and there is strong evidence for it being an allergy or immunotoxicity cause (human skin toxicant).
Is the "natural," non-orange, non-streak glow of Jergens Natural Glow Moisturizer for Face worth risking breakouts and enduring the smell? What about the ingredient concerns? With several ingredients known to cause cell mutation or tumors (cancer) and toxicity in reproductive and sensory organs, you should count the cost thoughtfully before you use this product. You may decide to check out some all-natural ingredient self-tanners, or try rubbing on some coconut oil (used for centuries by Polynesians and native Hawaiians as both a sunscreen and a tanning oil) and spend the first sunny day you get in your garden or at the park. Bottles of Jergen's Natural Glow Moisturizers are inexpensive, and often a sample of facial Natural Glow comes with your purchase of body Natural Glow, so you may just decide to put down the money and get a bottle to try for yourself.
© 2010 Jane Grey
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