Traditional Meets Modern

C.O. Bigelow has revamped its skincare line. The historic New York City apothecary, who joined forces with Bath & Body Works a few years ago to launch their skincare, bath, and body products nationwide, has streamlined, simplified, and updated their skincare products. No longer a Kiehl's clone with a dizzying array of different cleansers and moisturizers, the new C.O. Bigelow Face Collection consists of one cleanser each for normal-to-oily and normal-to-dry skin types, as well as a toner and a daytime moisturizer with SPF for each type. The Face Collection also features additional products for all skin types, including a night cream, an eye treatment, a face mask, a facial serum, and a dermabrasion cream.

I recently purchased the regimen for normal to dry skin. My new Bigelow regimen starts with the Vitamin-Boost Cream Cleanser ($10). It's a low-lathering cream cleanser that removes makeup and debris. I have combination skin that breaks out but can also be on the dry side, and I like this cleanser. However, I think it might be a bit too strong for very dry skin. I follow the cleanser with the alcohol-free Vitamin Booster ($12), a refreshing spray-on toner. I mist my face, gently press it into my skin, and then follow it with the All-in-One Protective Day Cream with SPF 25 ($19.50). I really liked the previous Bigelow day cream with SPF, and this one feels slightly less heavy but still rich enough to keep my skin soft. I finish my morning routine with the Triple Task Eye Treatment ($18). It targets wrinkles, undereye circles, and puffiness, and contains antioxidants.

I also purchased two of the products for all skin types. The Acai Repair Night Cream ($24) is the powerhouse of Bigelow's new skincare line. It contains a blend of antoxidant-rich fruits, including acai berries, mangosteen fruit, and chokeberry; as well as minerals such as copper, iron, and zinc; and multivitamins. The first day after using the Acai Repair Night Cream, I looked in the mirror in the ladies' room of the restaurant I was having lunch at, and I thought the tone of my skin looked a little better. I also purchased the Rice and Bamboo Gentle Dermabrasion ($18). It contains rice, bamboo, and bran to gently exfoliate the skin. It's creamy and slightly granular in feel, but not harsh. I use it three times a week.

I give the new line of skincare products from C.O. Bigelow high marks for streamlining my beauty regimen. The products are effective and pleasant to use (even if they are a bit over-fragranced, in my opinion). Almost all of the products in the Bigelow skincare line contain Bigelow's "Healthy Skin Complex," the company's proprietary blend of vitamins, minerals such as zinc, copper, iron, and magnesium, and antioxidant-rich berries (the only exception is Dr. Galen's Herbal Skin Tonic for normal-to-oily skin, the only holdout from the previous line, as it is one of the company's original products from the 19th century).

The new line of C.O. Bigelow products are visually pleasing. I admit, it was the packaging that first caught my eye. The new C.O. Bigelow skincare line retains the old-style apothecary labeling, complete with the Bigelow product number. But the cleansers now come in sleek tubes instead of plastic bottles (like Kiehl's), and the toners are in appealingly tall, skinny plastic bottles. The moisture creams and scrubs now come in plastic jars rather than the glass jars of Bigelow's previous skincare line, which is great for me since I have a habit of dropping beauty products in glass containers soon after purchasing them, resulting in broken glass and a lot of wasted product. This new line is also surprisingly affordable. Prices range from $10 to $24, so it won't break the bank. C.O. Bigelow products are available at all C.O. Bigelow and Bath & Body Works shops, as well as online at www.ilovebigelow.com and www.bathandbodyworks.com. Right now, if you buy any two items in the new C.O. Bigelow skincare line, you get a third item of equal or lesser value free. This offer is available in the stores as well as online. It's a great incentive to try C.O. Bigelow's new line of skincare.

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