Suave Cocoa Butter with Shea Moisturizer Doesn't Do the Job for Me
Sep 6, 2009
Cons: Smells too strong; doesn't absorb well; doesn't moisturize as it promises to
The Bottom Line: This lotion doesn't live up to it's promises and isn't what I am looking for in a cocoa and shea butter product. Inexpensiveness is the only bright point for me.
A month or so ago I ran out of my preferred cocoa/shea butter lotion and had to replace the bottle... as a very pregnant woman I lather on the lotion several times a day and really can't bear to go without any. At replacement time I happened to be a little strapped for cash and couldn't justify buying the more expensive Jergen's Shea Butter I'd loved so much last time, so I settled for what was half as expensive: Suave Skin Therapy Cocoa Butter with Shea Moisturizer. When it comes to skin care products and being broke I'm not too picky, so I figured the product would be semi-satisfactory. My expectation was that I'd be able to use this lotion at least once a day to help in avoiding pregnancy stretch marks. Now I know they're not completely preventable but any amount of moisturizing has to be better for prevention than using none at all.
About the Product
The bottle claims that this moisturizer lasts 24 hours and "fights the cycle of dryness." It's said to be "enriched with nature's moisturizers, cocoa and shea butters," and is supposed to smooth and firm skin to improve tone. It also claims to never be greasy and to absorb quickly into the skin. It comes in a beige-colored plastic bottle with a pump top, and the family sized bottle I purchased was around $4.00.
I first used this lotion, as usual, as soon as I got out of the shower. I pumped about a quarter-sized amount into my hand to start on my lower leg. Immediately I noticed the heavy, vanilla and chocolate scent that is embedded into this lotion; the aroma is much stronger in this formula than other cocoa butter lotions I've used, and I didn't care as much for it. It's not that I'm trying to hide that fact that I'm using cocoa butter for any reason, but gosh, people shouldn't be able to smell me a mile away and know not only that I use lotion, but that I use cocoa butter lotion. In any case, the lotion was a little thinner and more watery than the previous brand I used and indeed took a little more rubbing to get it to soak completely into my skin. It also seemed to take more product than normal to get what I felt to be complete coverage. When it came to lotioning my "3 Bs" (boobs, butt and belly) I really felt like I had to slather on the product to get sufficient moisture. After my whole body was covered I didn't feel sticky or tacky like I sometimes do with lotions, but I felt a sort of greasiness or wetness and figured I'd let the lotion absorb into my skin more completely before getting dressed for the day. After a few minutes my skin felt normal again... and I mean normal. I didn't feel greasy anymore, but most areas of my skin also didn't feel like they had been recently moisturized at all. Living in the humid state of Indiana and being summer, I didn't feel dry by any means (and heck, being pregnant I never really feel dry anymore) but I certainly didn't feel moisturized. At the time of purchase and first use (a little after five months) I had developed no pregnancy stretch marks and wanted to keep it that way (yes, I no the chances of that were slim) and I would freak out if I didn't feel super lotioned particularly on my belly and hips. I actually ended up putting another layer on within a few hours of first use. The strong smell of cocoa butter didn't really wane for a few hours, so I guess despite my not-so-moisturized feeling the product had to still be on my skin, right? I have to admit, I was a little disappointed.
I use lotion all over my body immediately after my morning shower and usually use it a few more times throughout the day focusing more solely on my boobs, butt, and belly to avoid those stretch marks. With the Jergen's I was using before this purchase I think I'd lube up about 2-3 times a day... with the Suave I think I used the product more like 3-6 times a day. While I know this is no fault of Suave's and instead is just a small price to pay for the miracle growing inside me (sorry to get all gooey) I am still disappointed to have gotten stretch marks even after such excessive use of this lotion. While I knew it wouldn't rid the chances of obtaining stretch marks I did hope it would lessen the amount, but I have developed quite a few. At the very least I would expect a lotion with shea butter and cocoa butter (or pretty much any body lotion, for that matter) to help ease the itchiness associated with developing stretch marks and with dry skin, but it hasn't helped in that regard either. This is a little irritating to me, and I know I shouldn't be so hard on the product about this.
I'm also disappointed obviously in the lack of moisture I feel it provides my skin-- it certainly doesn't give me 24 hours of moisture the way the packaging promised it would. The lotion is thinner than I'd hoped it would be, and despite the frequency with which I pump out the product it still for some reason develops an ungodly amount of lotion boogers around the dispenser. The lotion boogers are a big irritation to me; it causes the lotion to dispense pretty erratically sometimes, and I've gotten lotion all over the bathtub ledge, the carpet, and even the walls... it's also irritating to get a lotion booger in with the lotion I'm applying on my skin, because it doesn't work itself into my skin, and it's a pain to have to wipe it off and dispose of it every single time I use the durn lotion. I also dislike the greasy feeling the thin, watery lotion leaves on my skin before it "absorbs quickly & easily into" my skin (as the package states it should). Perhaps another thing that irritates me is that the ingredients list kind of scares me... I didn't expect it to be all-natural by any means, and I'm no beauty ingredients expert, but some of the ingredients don't all that friendly.
Overall I liked the product enough to use the whole bottle, but won't be purchasing it again. Having to use it so much more frequently than the other lotion I've used during my pregnancy sort of voided the whole less-money-spent factor. I am disappointed in the lack of moisture it provides, the too-strong scent, the wateriness and greasiness, and the tendency it has to produce lotion boogers. While this likely doesn't apply to most people, and while the product in NO WAY says it will prevent stretch marks, I also am still just plain disappointed that it did nothing to help prevent my stretch marks or even to fool me into thinking it was preventing them by, say, making my "3 Bs" areas feel moisturized or even less itchy. I doubt I'll be purchasing Suave Skin Therapy Cocoa Butter with Shea Moisturizer again, but I understand it may suit a more casual cocoa and shea butter users needs.
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