Venessa’s very skeptical: Hey, I recently saw Biotherm’s Aquasource Nonstop face cream, which supposedly equals ‘all the benefits of 5,000 litres of spa water concentrated in a single jar’. I was wondering if you guys have any experience with this face cream, and how it works?
To be honest, Vanessa, we’re not sure what “all the benefits of 5,000 liters of spa water” really means. But that won’t stop us from trying to answer!
For those of you not familiar with this brand, you can read more about Biotherm here. Essentially, they are a spa-spawned brand based on the magic of mineral water. Their Aquasource cream contains a patented hydration complex that claims to boost your skin’s moisture for 24 hours. Of course it’s expensive, but hey, aren’t you worth it?
What is mineral water?
As Vanessa pointed out Biotherm claims Aquasource contains all the benefits of 5,000 liters of “enriched” spa water. So the first point to address is, what the heck is spa water? For the sake of our discussion here, we’re assuming that it refers to mineral water that is all the rage at spas. Of course, that raises the next question: what is mineral water? Well, you don’t need to be a cosmetic chemist to figure out that mineral water is water that contains minerals. And according to the Water Encyclopedia (which you can find on the Left Brain’s night stand right next to the October issue of Allure), mineral water can be described as follows:
The chemical and physical characteristics of mineral water depend on the nature of the geologic materials through which the groundwater has moved. Common soluble minerals include calcium carbonate, iron compounds, sodium and magnesium salts, sulfur compounds, and metals.
Mineral waters are usually classified as alkaline, saline, ferrous, sulfurous, acidulous, or soda, and may be either cold (down to about 4.5°C or 40°F) or hot (up to about 100°C or 212°F). Some mineral waters may originate from deep within the Earth, being heated by geothermal sources of either volcanic or tectonic nature. Hotter water typically dissolves more materials, making the mineral concentration higher.
More about minerals
Now that we’ve answered that question, we have to figure out WHICH minerals are in spa water. (*Sigh* Do you see why this job is never easy?) To find out, we turned to one of the world’s most renowned sources of natural mineral water, Manitou Springs Mineral Spa in Canada. According to their analysis, here are the minerals present in real mineral water:
Magnesium: 9,505 milligrams/liter
Carbonate: 180 milligrams/lliter
Sulphate: 39,577 milligrams/liter
Potassium: 430 milligrams/liter
Sodium: 6,138 milligrams/liter
Chloride: 8,969 milligrams/liter
Calcium: 480 milligrams/liter
Oxide of Iron and Aluminum: 4.0 milligrams/liter
Silica: 9.9 milligrams/liter
If you add all those minerals up, you get about 60,000 mg (or 60 grams) of minerals per liter of spa water. Soooo, if a 1.7 fluid ounce jar of Biotherm Aquasource has the equivalent of 5,000 liters of spa water it stands to reason that should contain somewhere on the order of 60 grams per liter times 5,000 liters = 300,000 grams or about 600 pounds of minerals. That’s a pretty amazing package to hold so much!
The Beauty Brains bottom line
We admit our little mathematical exercise is a bit tongue-in-cheek, but the point is that Biotherm’s claim doesn’t seem very realistic or very meaningful in terms of product efficacy. But as with all our product evaluations, we’re more than happy to reconsider our position if the company can provide us further information about their products.