Courtesy of New York Times:
These sound amazing. Want to try some of this (editor comments)
SUE DEVITT, the Australian makeup artist whose clients have included Sarah Jessica Parker, Jennifer Lopez and Keira Knightley, is known for her sumptuous eye shadows and seaweed-infused foundations. But in February, Ms. Devitt and Tanya Zuckerbrot, the official dietitian to the Miss Universe Organization, are scheduled to appear on QVC to introduce a new beauty product that you don’t massage, smooth or brush onto your face. You eat it.
Set to retail for $38, the Beauty Booster, at the center of the women’s new, partly ingestible io Beauty collection, is a burgundy liquid that comes in what appears to be an oversize nail-polish bottle topped with a chemistry dropper. Loaded with antioxidants and minerals and tasting of the sweet fruit that inspired it (Ms. Devitt said she noticed her skin was more luminous after snacking on goji berries, raspberries and wild blackberries at a friend’s farm), the elixir can be drizzled over yogurt and into club soda. It can be taken alone, though Ms. Devitt said, naturally, that it is more potent if used in conjunction with io’s topical eye, face and neck creams.
Why not just eat fruit or drink juice?
“Juices have a ton of calories,” Ms. Zuckerbrot said, noting that her product is sugar- and calorie-free. “Who wants to sacrifice their behind for their face?”
The Booster is but the latest product in a new cornucopia of ingenious — or ingeniously marketed — cosmetics that are not slicked on like Noxzema but meant to be nibbled, swigged, sucked or muddled with ice.
Slathering on sunscreen might soon feel retro now that scientists have concocted the Imedeen Tan Optimizer capsule (temporarily out of stock in the United States) to help prevent sunburn. (In Brazil, there is also a Sunlover pill that promises to help those who take it get a tan.) Granola bars look passé next to Nimble, billed as the first nutrition bar to specifically nourish skin. And spraying on cologne seems positively Stone Age compared with sucking Deo Perfume Candy from Bulgaria, engineered to emit a rose fragrance through the pores of the skin.
The products claim to enhance hair, skin and nails with collagen, acai, lutein, reservatrol, goji berry, green tea, vitamins and other ingredients that sound as though they could whet the appetite of only Anthony Bourdain, like porcine placenta. A decade ago, such ingredients were found in the dusty aisles of health food stores. Today they can be found on the shelves of retailers high and low: Sephora, Nordstrom, drugstores, the corner deli.
Purportedly engineered to improve women’s skin elasticity and moisture, Balance Bar’s chocolate-flavored Nimble bars are coming to market in January (with yogurt orange swirl and peanut butter flavors already being tested in some markets). Frutels has come out with an acne fighter also based on that onetime skin nemesis, chocolate. You can wash these bonbons down with any number of so-called beautifying beverages: Votre Vu’s SnapDragon Beauty Beverage, Crystal Light’s Skin Essentials, Herbasway’s Beauty Drink.
Vincent Borba, the Hollywood aesthetician who these days is better known as the guy palling around with the newly single Demi Moore, has created a cosmetics line for Walgreens that included his popular Skin Balance waters ($24.99 for 12) in four varieties: Age Defying, Firming, Clarifying, Replenishing. (He hopefully describes the collaboration as the ingestible equivalent of Missioni for Target. )
Unlike cosmetics whose edibility is meant to amuse — Urban Decay’s Marshmallow Sparkling Lickable Body Powder, Smashbox’s Emulsion Lip Exfoliant, Dylan’s Candy Bar Candy Tattoos — this is more serious stuff. While the category, classified as nutricosmetics and “functional foods” by the cosmetics industry, has been hurt by the recession, demand is still expected to increase by about 6 percent a year to $8.5 billion by 2015, according to Freedonia Group, a market research company. Analysts at Zenith International, a food and drink consultancy, say the growth has been driven by celebrity culture and educated consumers seeking sophisticated ways to turn back the clock.
But do the products work? Many doctors say no (though others, like the dermatologists Dr. Fredric Brandt, Dr. Howard Murad and Dr. Nicholas Perricone, market supplements as part of their regimens). Good skin does not come from slickly marketed beauty drinks and foods, critics say, but from vegetables, whole foods and plain water. “If you are adequately hydrated, skin looks moist and healthy,” said Dr. Wahida Karmally, director of nutrition at the Irving Institute for Clinical and Translational Research at Columbia. “Water will carry the nutrients from foods to the body tissues and organs to keep them healthy.”