Foundations, and most other categories of color cosmetics for that matter, have become multitasking products by incorporating a treatment aspect. Plumping, smoothing, lifting and especially anti-aging ingredients are almost always formulated into liquid, powder, cream and mineral makeup for both mass and prestige brands. This observation is true of L'Oréal Paris' Visible Lift Smooth Absolute Foundation SPF 17. While the company's claim to eliminate "10 years of aging in a single stroke" seems a little ambitious, this column will review the ingredient deck for claim support and functionality.
The emulsifying system in this product is water-in-silicone (w/s), which gives it the added advantages of being lightweight, silky, long-wearing and possibly water resistant. W/S emulsions are optimal for liquid foundations because of their ease of spreading and lack of streaking. There are multiple forms of silicone derivatives in this formula including volatile and gum types. The formula also contains a small amount of cellulose gum and acrylates copolymer for thickening and stability. Aside from cyclopentasiloxane and cyclohexasiloxane, which may be part of a blend, and phenyl trimethicone, the oil phase includes pentaerythrityl tetraisostearate and the organic sunscreen octinoxate. The humectants are butylene glycol, pentylene glycol and a small amount of sorbitol.
The "soft focus" effect to "fill lines and wrinkles instantly" is due to the silica dimethyl silyate and the surface treated (disodium stearoyl lactylate and aluminum hydroxide) pigments. The claim is also supported by the precision metering capability of the brush. The bioactive or cosmeceutical ingredients include atelocollagen, retinyl palmitate, tocopherol and hydrolyzed elastin, which support the plumping, smoothing and lifting claims.
The preservative system consists of phenoxyethanol and methylparaben. In this formula, most likely, any ingredient listed after the phenoxyethanol is present in the formula at less than 1%. Rounding out our foundation formula,titanium dioxide, iron oxides and bismuth oxychloride contribute the pigments. Titanium dioxide does double duty as the inorganic sunscreen active.
Of note, the product does not list or contain fragrance or fragrance masking agents.