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When it comes to lotions and potions for dry skin or combination skin, I have my many products but when I forget to take a dry skin lotion with me when travelling, I usually end up buying something I regret later. I discovered Nivea Soft Intensive Moisturising Creme in 2009 and was about the only product that looked good at the time in the place I was visiting. The weather didn't make life easier either where harsh winds were the order of the day and having taken the advice of friends to pack light clothing, I ended up spending a small fortune on fleece jackets and woolly jumpers - I really should have known better! Over the years though, I've purchased this creme product as a stand by in tubes rather than the more expensive tub, whose price puts me off, even if last year Nivea brought out a bigger tub with extra 50ml added.
The Price, The Product & The Promise
Briefly there are two sizes available to this product of which I found in Superdrug and Boots. For 75mls the tube I purchased cost me £2-60 against the £4-28 tub (now 200ml in 2012 compared to 150ml.) Other pharmacies have this on sale from £2-40 for the tube and upwards so it is best to shop around! The familiar Nivea label is clear to spot, white lettering on blue surrounded by green and blue curvy circular angles with small dark blue lettering for the important wording on the product. It is a very professional looking product al by the tube alone, it could so easily slip into pockets or bags due to its compact size.
In general Nivea promises that this "soft intensive moisturising creme," helps to maintain skin's suppleness and general softness. Whilst the claim that skin may feel "sensationally soft," and "invigorated," there is no doubt in my mind that this cream does work to some degree to the promise it makes, even if it contains oil of Jojoba and Vitamin E cream to help out those who are fans of both ingredients.
Sadly I find the scent of Nivea Soft off putting. It took me a while to put a finger on the scent, because there is a familiarity which resembles original Nivea cream but the highest tones of the cream reveal a chemical smell, much like the acidic smell of camera developing liquid which used to permeate the air in many branches of Boots. Whilst the smell is fresh, it is not sweet smelling and it was this factor that made me decide not to apply it to my body, the better sign later on is that the smell does die down but instantly applying if you look away means you won't feel like you smell like a camera!
Generally I found that when applied to a just washed face, and my face being particularly close to being under scrutiny at the moment (not just with the short lived Gillette Fusion power shaver) skin feels very supple and soft - much akin to the claims made by Nivea. I on the other hand use this cream for my hands too and it is a bonus that this cream can be used on your body, hands and face. For a good many hours my face was smooth and felt protected from the winds whilst out walking on hills.
On my hands particularly on my palms where my skin tends to dry out quicker, I assumed that the same amount of hours of soft skin could well apply here. For about two hours my hands felt beautifully smooth, soft and lacked a dry quality. However after this, my hands started to regain their dry quality, which is an aspect I wasn't hoping to find. In between my fingers and the webs on my hands showed dry skin coming back up - in terms of a moisturiser for hands, there are better products out there which have longer lasting effects and I was disappointed in this respect that the claimted softness didn't last long. In capacity of soothing dry skin however, Nivea's other product, their Dry skin body lotion is a better bet here unsurprisingly and using this cream didn't really make my skin come alive, or "invigorating" as Nivea claim.
This is because unlike original Nivea, this cream doesn't fall out of the capped tube easily. In many ways then, the consistency reminds me of Astral moisurising creme. Here the cream is quite thick, advancing the idea that a little could go a long way and it isn't a milky product, hence why it is available in a flat tub as well as a tube. However, on my skin it takes ages to absorb into the rest of my body - fine if you have the time in the evenings for the best time to apply - but I prefer Nivea's milkier dry skin lotion here that gives me faster application and longer soft, supple skin afterwards - with a much nicer scent too.
Nivea Soft is easy to disperse by slightly squeezing the likewise soft glossy tube like a tube of toothpaste, therefore providing a bonus aspect to the packaging being easy to use by my mum who has Arthritis in her hands. The cream is also white so it's hardly going to stain clothing. For hands especially I find a good decent squeezed long blob (as opposed to a short blot) should allow more geographical space to get around. On the face, a similar amount can be applied but I found that it isn't very greasy which is a bonus if you are worried about amounts to apply. Smaller amounts tend to vanish too quickly as a result, a fact I found as soon as I wet shaved.
Another bonus is the fact that Nivea Soft doesn't sit on skin for long periods on my face, neck and upper part of my body that is open to the elements. I found it is easily absorbed and disappears quite quickly. Oh but for that smell, it would easily get at least four stars!
Of course all results are destroyed the moment you intend to wash your hands, but the Jojoba oil content is immediately apparent, especially as water rolls off easily and the need to add soap will be necessary to rid yourself of the product completely. Otherwise just washing your hands under a hot tap will not remove the cream and skin can then become oily. But in all intents and purposes, I still like this cream - but only for parts of my face and hands and it would be more effective if it could be easier to wash off.
Sadly for Vegans and others however, another downside to this product is that it also contains Lanolin.