If you're anything like me, finding a HG (i.e. Holy Grail) moisturizer that does everything you need and want it to do feels like a never-ending chore. You research, you try something out based on the rave reviews, it works...until it doesn't...and you end up back at square one.
Up until now I haven't found THE moisturizer for my temperamental combo skin. There have been some that have come close, but just when I think I've hit the jackpot it starts to break me out. It seems like everything I've tried has eventually caused irritation, breakouts, or more oil and clogged pores.
I've tried so many moisturizers that I've lost track at this point. Few ever get used up or warrant a repurchase, and even fewer receive HG status and become an integral part of my routine. Sure I use oils (and I love them) but they don't provide ALL the nourishment my skin needs.
Well, I'm happy to report that the hunt has finally come to an end because I've found THE perfect moisturizer for my bratty acne-prone skin – Tatcha's The Water Cream.
What is it?
Tatcha is a luxury skincare brand that has recently been dominating the industry by combining time-honored ingredients used by Japanese Geisha for over 300 years with science. The basis for for Tatcha's products is Hadasei-3™ – a proprietary trinity of anti-aging super-foods from a Japanese diet and the basis for Geisha beauty rituals: green tea, rice and algae.
Tatcha's The Water Cream ($68 for 1.07 oz) is a nutrient-rich, lightweight, oil free moisturizer that contains Japanese wild rose, Japanese leopard lily, and the Hadasei-3™ complex. It's unique water like formula starts out as a cream that upon application breaks down into a water like moisturizer, delivering a surge of moisture that absorbs easily into the skin without feeling heavy or greasy.
The Water Cream claims to visibly tighten pores and smooth texture with wild rose, control excess oil and purify the skin for natural turnover with leopard lily, and the Hadasei-3 complex restores radiance.
The Water Cream is also formulated without parabens, sulfates and phthalates and has a shelf life of 6 months upon opening.
I wish I still had the box that The Water Cream comes in to show you what an experience it is to open a Tatcha product. The packaging is crazy gorgeous and as soon as you open it you feel like you're about to pamper and reward yourself. Tatcha's packaging is a luxurious presentation that makes you feel like this product is something seriously special, even before you've put it on your skin.
The cream itself comes in a beautiful seafoam green heavyweight plastic jar, complete with gold detailing. The best part? The top of the jar holds a small gold spatula to dip into the cream so you don't have to use your fingers. It's insanely beautiful and classy, and I give major kudos to Tatcha's packaging design team.
Let's talk about the amount of product for a sec. I know that 1.7 oz is not a lot of product for $68, and this is honestly its only downfall. It's not an inexpensive product by any stretch of the imagination, but it's not THE most expensive product on the market and it is certainly not the most expensive product I've ever purchased, so there's that. I will say that the packaging most definitely plays a part in the price point, but it's so dang pretty that I don't mind a bit.
Sure I love a deal, and of course I'd prefer not to spend close to $100 on a product, but if I added up all the stuff I've purchased, tried, and not loved? It's surprising how much more I've actually spent in the long run.
When it comes to my skin, it's not worth skimping on. I'd much rather spend more for something that works and works well, than continuously spending money on lesser quality, less effective products with nasty ingredients.
Application and Use
The Water Cream is an amazingly air-light white cream in texture and consistency. It has a crisp, clean, floral-citrus scent that is calming, fresh, and elegant. The scent isn't too extreme or heavy for me personally, and it does dissipate after awhile once the cream has absorbed into your skin. I think it would be subtle enough for those sensitive to scents.
You only need the smallest amount to adequately moisturize your entire face, which is really remarkable considering how light in texture it is. This also serves as a benefit in regards to size and price. I've had my jar going on 3 months now, and I'm nowhere near needing to repurchase.
The little spatula on top of the lid pulls out the perfect pearl-sized amount of product. I dot the cream on every area of my face before working it into my skin with my fingertips. Immediately, it morphs as you apply it and it no longer feels like a cream. It applies with a water-like fluidity that spreads evenly and lightly. It's SO incredibly refreshing! As soon as I apply it I can feel my skin just drinking it up.
I cannot stress how much I love applying this moisturizer! I'm not kidding...I look forward to using it. Every. Single. Day. It's so refreshing and soothing that it makes you sigh out of pure bliss. At least, it does for me.
It feels so extremely light on the skin and it gives your skin a healthy beautiful glow that looks lit-from-within healthy. After applying, my skin feels SO soft and smooth once it's been applied. It's so hard to describe just how smooth my skin feels, but for someone that has textures issues due to pores I never thought that one product could ever make my skin feel THIS smooth.
This moisturizer works well on so many levels. It's a beautiful moisturizer to use under makeup as it won't make your foundation slide off, and it creates such a beautiful prepped base. It really allows for a smooth application whether you're using a primer or not.
It mixes well with oils too! If I want to use an oil in the evening I'll dispense some cream into the palm of my hand, add a drop or two of my oil, and mix the two in the palm of my hand with the spatula before applying to my skin.
Results and Final Thoughts
My skin is visibly obsessed with The Water Cream. It hasn't caused any breakouts (not ONE) and it calms my skin without stinging if it's irritated. Fine lines are plumped and smoother, and my pores look tighter and more refined than they ever have...ever.
The Water Cream moisturizes my skin perfectly without feeling heavy, and it makes my skin feel like it can actually breathe. It doesn't make my skin oily or greasy and it prevents my drier areas – around my nostrils and under eyes – from looking dry or flaky.
I highly recommend it for those who are acne prone, oily or combo with sensitivities. If you are on the more severe dry side or have conditions like eczema, dermatitis etc., The Water Cream may not moisturize enough for you since it is on the light side. I'd suggest trying to get a sample jar before investing. But for us oily gals with sensitive acne-prone skin? This stuff is magic.
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Brigid Anderson has been a makeup addict for over 15 years and has worked as a freelance makeup artist and stylist for fashion labels and music videos. When she isn't writing about and using beauty products, she enjoys spending time with her husband and their dog Ivan, hoarding vintage clothing and vinyl records, and binge watching 'Game of Thrones'...repeatedly.