Today, I’m excited to review the Belif Aqua Bomb moisturizer. It’s been a few years since Belif The True Cream Aqua Bomb was introduced to the world of skincare. When it first hit the skincare circuit, the moisturizer was widely praised for its lightweight texture, ease of application, and innovative ingredient list. A few years later, does it hold in a place in my skincare routine? Read on for the latest Belief Aqua Bomb review in 2020.
What is Belif?
Belif is a Korean skincare brand. It was created in 2010 by LG Household & Health Care, a subsidiary of the Korean conglomerate LG. (Yes, that is the same company that creates electronics and household appliances!).
The Aqua Bomb is one of the most famous products in the Belif line-up. Retailers describe the cream as “an ultra-lightweight, oil-free gel cream that instantly cools and refreshes skin while providing intensive hydration.”
The cream has a gel-like consistency that looks light blue in the container. However, it applies clear and has a cooling effect when it touches my skin, which feels quite nice on hot or humid days.
This is meant as a morning or evening moisturizer, and the lightweight texture is conductive for both, depending on factors like weather and number of layers.
What is the ingredient list like?
This cream contains 52 ingredients and a mix of emollients, humectants, and anti-oxidants. Let’s take a closer look at the top five ingredients in the formulation:
This is a commonly used solvent. It helps dissolve other ingredients together.
- Dipropylene Glycol
This is another solvent. It also helps create the texture of the formulation.
This is a humectant. It helps your skin to hold onto water so that it feels nicely moisturized.
- Methyl Trimethicone
This is another solvent.
- Alcohol Denat
This is another solvent. It also helps to create the gel-like texture in the formulation.
As you can see, the first five ingredients of the cream are largely made of solvents. The highlight is Glycerin, which is largely regarded is a wonderful ingredient for hydration. However, the formula also contains Alcohol Denat, which can be drying and irritating for sensitive skin types.
The formula also contains a few hero anti-oxidant ingredients worth noting:
- Lady’s Mantle: Provides antioxidants and has pore minimizing benefits; helps remove free radicals from skin.
- Malachite: Antioxidant that neutralizes free radical activity.
- Plantin: Creates moisture seal on skin.
- Oat Husk: Attracts moisture (humectant).
In addition, the ingredient safety breaks down as such (according to EWG ingredient ratings):
Overall, this cream was a great fit for me because I have dry skin and like to layer my skincare. I also know from firsthand experience that my skin does not react poorly to alcohol. However, I would caution those with sensitive skin to patch test before purchasing because of the potential for irritation due to the combination of alcohol and various ingredients.
My Experience with Aqua Bomb
I chose Aqua Bomb as my night-time moisturizer because I wanted to switch from a heavy-duty moisturizer to a lighter one. With the seasonal transition to spring, I wanted a lighter moisturizer that will be more optimal for layering.
In the past, I haven’t been a fan of gel creams because they were usually too sticky and fragrant. Often, gel creams have felt like face masks that don’t absorb well into my skin and leave a sticky residue. Also, because the gel consistency is more common in K-beauty than western products, I’ve found they can be loaded with overwhelming fragrance, which turns me off.
What I liked
I’ve been pleasantly surprised by Aqua Bomb. First, I was impressed with the texture – it is a lightweight gel that actually absorbs into my skin and does not leave my skin feeling sticky. As a result, I’ve loved the feeling of layering on a face oil on top of this! Secondly, I really enjoyed the cooling sensation when I apply it on my face. It especially felt nice in the mornings as a quick boost to wake myself up. Lastly, I did feel this was properly hydrating! Usually I will double up on moisturizers, but my skin felt soft and supple in the mornings when I went to bed with this on.
What I didn’t like
Although I did enjoy the moisturizer, I didn’t like the fact that the fragrance is a little stronger than what I usually prefer. I could definitely smell the “artificial” element which turned me off a bit. In addition, the texture of this moisturizer is more slippery than I usually like. Given my personal preference, I felt it took a little too long to apply and absorb into my skin.
I used this cream for about a month, and enjoyed it overall. Especially in the mornings, I appreciated the lightweight texture and hydration that lasted throughout the day. Will I purchase another? Probably not, because I’m not the biggest fan of the gel cream texture. However, this was an impressive gel cream and one that I’d highly recommend to those with dry and normal skin. For oily or sensitive skin types, my opinion is that there are better options out there.
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