Paula Begoun, author of "Don't Go To the Cosmetic Counter," visited The Early Show to unravel some myths about the cosmetics industry and give tips on how to shop smart, look beautiful and save money.
The book describes cosmetics reliability, value, texture, application and effect on the skin. Begoun says the skincare products are evaluated almost entirely by analyzing the ingredient list and testing the claims of the products.
For instance, Begoun says, if a toner asserts that it's designed for sensitive skin, it shouldn't contain ingredients that irritate the skin. Also, a moisturizer that claims to hydrate the skin should contain ingredients to perform that function, she says.
Cosmetics companies can get away with misleading the public because, according to the FDA, cosmetic companies do not have to prove their claims or the efficacy of their products. Advertising claims, however, are monitored to some extent by the FTC. But any crackdowns on false product claims usually occur after the ads have run.
Begoun gave summer tips on tinted moisturizers and sheer foundations with sunscreen; pressed powders with sunscreen; shimmer powders; lip gloss; lipsticks with sunscreen; waterproof mascaras; and eyeshadows.
Here are some of the products Begoun recommended:
Begoun says foundation should not be any shade or tone of orange, peach, pink, rose, green or ash, because there are no people with that skin color. Consistency, coverage and feel are also important, she says. Begoun explains all foundations, regardless of texture, must go on smoothly and evenly, not separate or turn color, and be easy to blend.
Foundations with Sunscreens
Begoun says foundations with sunscreens are held to the same standards as any other sunscreen, which means they must have least a Sun Protection Factor (SPF) of 15 and must include a UVA protecting ingredient as one of the active ingredients on the label.
Bobbi Brown SPF 15 Tinted Moisturizer, $35
Lancôme Bienfait Total UV Tinted SPF 15, $36
Clinique City Block Sheer Tint Oil-Free Daily Face Protector SPF 15, $15.50
Sonia Kashuk Hydro-Tint SPF 15, $9.99
Neutrogena Healthy Defense Sheer Makeup SPF 30,$10.99
Avon Sheer Nourishment Tinted Moisturizer SPF 15, $7
Face powders can be either pressed or loose. Begoun says she evaluate them on whether they go on sheer, shiny, chalky or heavy, and whether they are too pink, peach ash or rose. She gives higher marks to those that go on sheer and have a silky-soft texture with a natural beige, tan or rich brown finish, and that have no overtones of red, peach, yellow, orange or green.
Prescriptives Magic Soft Powder, $28
Laura Mercier Loose Powder in "Star Dust" or "Sun Dust," $32
L'Oreal On the Loose Shimmering Powder, $5.99
Revlon Skinlights Face Illuminator Loose Powder, $10.99
Face Powders with Sunscreens
There are a few face powders that have a reliable SPF 15 or greater and that contain UVA protecting ingredients. Begoun says you must be sure to apply the pressed powder in a manner that liberally, completely and evenly covers the face.
Clinique City Base Oil-Free Powder Foundation SPF 15, $21
Neutrogena Healthy Defense Protective Powder SPF 30, $10.99
Begoun evaluates eye shadow on the basis of texture and ease of application. Begoun says eyeshadows that are too sheer or powdery are a problem because the color tends to fade as the day progress and they can also be difficult to apply. She says it is best to buy eyeshadow colors in singles, not in sets. Begoun says she is biased towards matte eyeshadow powders because liquid and cream eyeshadows are hard to control and even more difficult to blend with other colors.
Begoun recommends buying mascara that can be applied easily and quickly while building length and thickness. It should never smear or flake, regardless of price, she says. Whether or not it smears is difficult to assess. For instance no mascara can hold up to a heavy layer of moisturizer around the eyes. Begoun recommends waterproof mascaras for swimming and special occasions that will involve tears. She says there are many waterproof mascara in the market, but only a few capture the traits of non-waterproof mascaras while still being waterproof.
Laura Mercier Waterproof Mascara, $19
Guerlain Super-Cils Mascara Waterproof
L'Oreal Lash Intensifique Waterproof Mascara, $6.99
Cover Girl Professional Waterproof Mascara, $4.49
Maybelline Illegal Lengths Waterproof Mascara, $5.09 and WonderCurl, $5.09
Everyone has their own needs and preferences when it comes to lipstick. Some like sheer, others glossy and others matte finish. Because of staying power, Begoun give the highest marks to creamy or semi-matte lipsticks that go on evenly and aren't glossy, sticky, or drying. Begoun evaluates lip glosses based on their texture, application and longevity.
Lipsticks with Sunscreen
Revlon Moisturous Lipcolor SPF 17, $7.49
Revlon Absolutely Fabulous LipCream SPF 15, $6.99
Almay PureTints Protective LipCare SPF 25, $4.49
Almay Lip Vitality Smoothing LipColor SPF 15, $8.69