A Decent Moisturizer -with Some Drawbacks and Mysterious Ingredients
Reviewed in the United States on 27 September 2015
Ahava Dermud Intensive Foot Cream is part of the company's Dermud line, whose products contain Dead Sea Mud. This foot cream also contains, among other ingredients, shea butter and aloe vera to soften skin, coconut and jojoba oils to lock in moisture, provitamin B5 and vitamin E, and Ahava's proprietary Osmoter, which is evaporated mineral-rich Dead Sea water that is supposed to draw water and nutrients from the lower layers of skin to the outer layers. Unsurprisingly, minerals are major active ingredients in this product. The cream is thicker in consistency than a lotion but not as thick as a cream in a pot. It smells medicinal mixed with floral.
The cream absorbs relatively quickly when applied, but you need to rub it in. Ahava recommends that you "apply generously to clean feet morning and night, paying special attention to soles and heels." I did this for a week and found it difficult to tell if the cream was beneficial to my skin. The cream leaves a smooth coating on the skin, like silicone. But no silicone that I recognize is listed in the ingredients. Setting that mystery aside, the skin feel smooth but not supple. I could not feel my skin through the smooth coating. After washing to remove any retexturizer, it did seem like my feet were more supple and moisturized than before. But dead or peeling skin was not affected. This is not an exfoliating moisturizer.
The mystery of the retexturizer: I was sure that the Dermud Intensive Foot Cream contained silicone -and a lot of it- until I looked at the ingredients list. This is the most aggressively retexturizing moisturizing cream that I've ever used. One application produces a smooth, even slick, skin surface. It is so pronounced that the soles of my feet are still slippery on tile floor in the morning after applying the cream the night before. This is a little dangerous. My toes also slip and slide against each other a day after applying the cream. This could be a desirable effect for some people, though I don't appreciate it. I don't recommend wearing shoes with slick insoles while using this cream.
More evidence of a retexturizer is the impairment of perspiration. When my legs perspire, my feet are bone dry in addition to being unnaturally smooth. Normally, my feet would perspire more than my legs. It's weird to run my hand down my leg, when it is a little damp, and hit bone dry foot. Again, this could be a desirable effect for some people -those whose feet perspire excessively. But it certainly feels and acts like silicone. Air penetrates silicone, while perspiration and oils do not. Whatever it is, the slickness makes it a poor choice of ingredient for a foot cream. But I'm not a fan of silicone in skin care products in general, so others may not find these odd effects objectionable.
Maybe the foot cream just has an excessive amount of glycerin in it. That is not the only ingredient mystery. Triclosan is an antimicrobial agent that has been restricted by the European Union and will soon be banned in consumer hygiene products in Minnesota. In addition to disrupting the balance of bacteria on skin and creating resistance, the concern is the effect of triclosan on bacteria in wastewater. The tube of Dermud Intensive Foot Cream that I received does not list ingredients. But the list of ingredients on the box on Amazon's product page includes triclosan. The list of ingredients on Ahava's web site does not.
That list contains methylisothiazolinone, another antimicrobial that is cytotoxic and neurotoxic. Perhaps Ahava is replacing triclosan with methylisothiazolinone in anticipation of further restrictions on the chemical. This begs the question of why Ahava feels the need to put antimicrobial agents in its products. As a preservative? To retard odor-causing bacteria? No thanks. Methylisothiazolinone is also an irritating chemical and common allergen. Along with the fragrance ingredients alpha isomethyl ionone and benzyl salicylate, it makes this product unsuitable for sensitive skin. Although it did not bother me at first, the cream is irritating to my skin after a week's use.
To be clear, there a two ingredients listed on the old boxes that are not on Ahava's web site: triclosan and 2-Methyl-2H-Isothiazolin-3-One. There is one ingredient listed on Ahava's web site that is not on the box: Methylisothiazolinone. Which ingredient list represents the product you receive is anyone's guess. Ahava's customer service has been unresponsive to inquiries on this topic.
Ingredient list from Ahava's web site: Aqua (Mineral Spring Water), Glycerin, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Ceteareth-20 & Cetearyl Alcohol, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Ethylhexyl Palmitate, Sodium Lactate, Propanediol (Corn derived Glycol), Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Decyl Oleate, Glyceryl Stearate, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract & Aqua (Water) & Propylene Glycol, Peg-40 Stearate, Stearyl Alcohol, Lactic Acid, Maris Aqua(Dead Sea Water), Xanthan Gum, Panthenol (Pro Vitamin B5), Zinc Oxide, Parfum (Fragrance), Silt (Dead Sea Mud), Allantoin, Tocopheryl (Vitamin E) Acetate, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate & PEG-4 Laurate & PEG-4 Dilaurate & PEG-4, Hippophae Rhamnoides (Oblipicha) Fruit Oil, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil, Methylisothiazolinone, Tocopherol (Vitamin E), Hexyl Cinnamal, Linalool, Alpha Isomethyl Ionone, Benzyl Salicylate, Hydroxyisohexyl 3-Cyclohexene Carboxaldehyde, Geraniol, Coumarin, Benzyl Benzoate, Cinnamyl Alcohol, Limonene.
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