I picked up the tester off the shelf expecting something that would feel heavy and creamy, but the light fluid that came out of the tube was a surprise. I almost didn't buy it as a result, but I'm very glad I decided to trust Avene's reputation for dealing with dry, sensitive skin enough to give it a try.
A day cream that is designed to protect dry to very dry and sensitive skin from daily environmental conditions, with an SPF20, Hydrance Optimale UV Riche (€19.99) is perfect for my needs at this time of year. It keeps my skin feeling hydrated and comfortable, even in very cold, windy weather and the sun protection level is enough for me for the kind of daily exposure I have at this time of year. I often find that moisturisers with added SPF don't give me the skincare benefits I need from them in addition to the sun protection, but this cream does a really good job of balancing the hydrating and protective functions it offers.
Hydrance Optimale is based on the very scientific-sounding Meiboserin, which limits evaporation of the Avene Thermal Spring Water from the skin and Lipomucine, which increases coverage across the skin and I must admit that I can see the results of both claims in using the product. The thin fluid formula spreads easily across the skin and absorbs well - not so well that it seems to get sucked right into the skin and disappear, but well enough that it leaves a smooth surface that looks fine without makeup, but also makes a good base for foundation when I do want to wear it.
I must admit that I'm very lax with my skincare routine at the moment and if I'm not wearing makeup I often don't cleanse and moisturise at night, so I'm extra impressed that with just cleansing and applying this moisturiser once daily, my skin doesn't feel uncomfortably dry. I also like that the addition of the sunscreen hasn't resulted in blocked pores, which is often the case for my sensitive skin.
All in all, this is definitely a keeper for me and one I'd recommend for any dry-skinned people. If you've tried it, what did you think?