Extreme makeovers aren’t just for people and houses anymore. Our beauty products wanted in on the action too, as Noxzema recently transformed from its familiar packaging to a sleeker, updated look, and added a few new products to its arsenal. Inside the shiny new jars and bottles, the old-fashioned formula we know and love has stayed the same. At the very least, it still smells that way.
The very nanosecond I opened the small pot of Noxzema Original Deep Cleansing Cream, I rode a wave of nostalgia straight back to my sophomore year of high school. My acne had just started to make its presence known, and my mother handed me a jar of Noxzema cream, saying that she had used it in high school and she thought should give it a try. I lathered up with the heavy cream formula in a fervent attempt to banish my new unsightly spots, not knowing that they would become my on-and-off companions for the next ten years. I liked the strident scent and the tingles that almost stung; like Vick’s Vapor Rub and Icee Hot, I new Noxzema worked because I could feel it.
I moved on to more other acne-fighting products in my ever-present search for better skin, but when the rebranded Noxzema came across my virtual desk, I stopped to give the product another once-over. Nostalgia is all well and good, but does this old standard hold up when compared to newer, brighter products? I’m happy to report that after a week of using the original Noxzema cream, my most recent flare-up of acne cleared away. My fiftteen-year-old self worried over the cream factor of the Noxzema products, but my twenty-seven-year-old reality appreciated that the cream didn’t dry out my skin.
The newer products of the line don’t slouch in efficiency either. The Noxzema Clean Moisture Makeup Removal Cloths removed my heavy-duty waterproof mascara – the only wipes I’ve ever found that tackle makeup as promised. For those who still shy away from heavy cleansers, Noxzema Clean Blemish Control Daily Scrub leaves the tingly eucalyptus oil behind in favor of salicyclic acid. Unlike its cream predecessor, this scrub gave my skin a tight, clean feeling that would have done any zealous high schooler proud.
Thanks to this new incarnation, it seems Noxzema will stay with us for another fifty years, it seems. I wish nothing but clear skin for my as-yet imaginary children, but it’s nice to know I’ll be able to hand them a jar, or a bottle of scrub, and say, “Your grandmother used this. And oh, yeah, me too . . .”
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– Katharine McKenzie