Saving: Fall skin care products

September 27, 2011

Sure you can go to a spa and pamper yourself, but when it comes to keeping your skin moisturized on a daily basis, which drugstore lotion works best? Consumer Reports put more than a dozen lotions through a series of tests to find which moisturize the most.

Consumer Reports ShopSmart magazine checked out 14 moisturizing body lotions from names like Aveeno, Vaseline, and Jergens, as well as store brands from CVS, Walmart, Walgreens, and Target. Jody Rohlena of Consumer Reports ShopSmart says, "Our testers rounded up 26 women to see how well each of the lotions moisturized over the course of a day."

All the testing is done inside this humidity-controlled chamber. Testers use this instrument to measure the moisture level in each panelist's skin - before applying the moisturizer, then after applying the moisturizer at intervals of two hours, five hours, and finally 24 hours.

Up & Up Extra Healing Moisturizer from Target was the least moisturizing lotion. Consumer Reports' sensory panelists also evaluated the feel of each lotion, as well as the aroma.

"Some smelled a bit like plastic," Rohlena said. "As far as skin feel, some were thin, others were a bit waxy."

Some of the moisturizers were virtually aroma-free. Among them: Cetaphil Moisturizing Lotion, which was also the most moisturizing lotion tested. It costs about $10.

As for Walmart's Equate that says it's comparable to Cetaphil - good news! Consumer Reports' tests show it moisturizes nearly as well and costs around $4 less.

Consumer Reports ShopSmart says another bargain lotion that performed well is Suave's Advanced Therapy Moisturizer for Severely Dry Skin. It only costs around $3, and it has a pleasant orange-blossom aroma.

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