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Product Reviews

Paula’s Choice Moisture Boost Hydrating Treatment Cream

Paula’s Choice Moisture Boost Hydrating Treatment Cream: ($19.95 for 2 oz)

Positives: This product has a ton of jojoba seed oil, whose similarities to sebum composition should relieve truly dry skin types. There are also moderate to high amounts of the epidermal barrier components: ceramide 3, cholesterol as well sodium hyaluronate, glycerin, and squalane, which are water-binding agents. Finally, it contains moderate amounts of vitamins E, C, and B3 (present as niacinamide). Combined, these make a potent cocktail for dry skin.

Neutrals: None.

Negatives: None as usual for Paula’s Choice products!

Packaging: This comes in an opaque tube.

Overall: This has a lightweight gel-cream texture that smooths on to the skin beautifully. However, it is not the most potent “treatment,” meaning that it doesn’t contains high amounts of various ingredients like vitamin C or retinol. I’d definitely recommend this to people who have very dry to normal skin types. Anyone who’s oily will not like this because of the high jojoba oil content, which like I said in the 2/16/12 update of my skin care routine, here, it can clog the pores even with concurrent use of chemical exfoliants, which can lead to acne and/or flaky skin.


PS = [[[PIS – 0] x WIC] + [TPS x WPC]] x 100%

PS = [[8.5/10 x 2/3] + [3/3 x 1/3]] x 100%

PS = [17/30 + 3/9] x 100%

PS = [51/90 + 30/90] x 100%

PS = 81/90 x 100%

PS = .900 x 100%

PS = 90.0%

AS = A-

Check the Product Review Rubric for a full explanation on how I rate products.


Water, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil (emollient plant oil), Ethylhexyl Stearate (thickener), Butylene Glycol (slip agent), Glycerin (slip/water-binding agent), Petrolatum (emollient), Cetearyl Alcohol, Dipentaerythrityl Hexacaprylate/ Hexacaprate, Tridecyl Trimellitate (all thickeners), Sodium Hyaluronate, Ceramide 3, Cholesterol (skin-conditioning/water-binding agents),Tocopherol (Vitamin E/antioxidant) Squalane (emollient), Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate (stabilized Vitamin C/antioxidant), Dimethicone (silicone slip agent), Niacinamide (Vitamin B3/cell-communicating ingredient), Polysorbate 60 (thickener), Hydrolyzed Jojoba Protein, Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Whey Protein (all water-binding agents), Tridecyl Stearate, Neopentyl Glycol Dicaprylate/Dicaprate (thickeners), Phenyl Trimethicone (silicone slip agent), Myristyl Myristate (thickener), Linoleic Acid, Linolenic Acid, Phospholipids, Decarboxy Carnosine HCI (cell-communicating ingredients), Hydroxyethyl Acrylate/Sodium Acryloyldimethyltaurate Copolymer, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer (film-forming/water-binding agents), Cetearyl Glucoside, Cetyl Alcohol, Polyglyceryl-3 Beeswax (all thickeners/emollients), Triethanolamine (pH-adjustor), Disodium EDTA (chelating agent), Benzoic Acid, Chlorphenesin, Sorbic Acid, Phenoxyethanol (all preservatives)

About John

The Triple Helixian is an unbiased science and research-based site that attempts to clarify and elucidate questions about skin care, while aspiring to be the most thorough and complete source of information.


8 thoughts on “Paula’s Choice Moisture Boost Hydrating Treatment Cream

  1. Apologies for the name change. My brain acts funny sometimes :$
    I get milia too, but only occasionally and no more than one bump at a time… and it usually disappears on its own within 2 or 3 weeks. I’ve been blaming it on my concealer (Benefit’s Erase Paste) because it’s usually near the inner corners of my eyes. I really hope it’s not the MB cream because that really is the only thing that moisturizes my under eye area :S – that and a thin layer of olive oil at night.
    I have oily skin so I wouldn’t go for the Skin Recovery serum but I don’t like the skin balancing either. I’m thinking of getting the original Resist serum. Have you used that one?
    Thank you for the recommendations. I checked your routine reviews and they are amazing!

    Posted by Isa | April 15, 2012, 8:23 pm
    • Sure it’s no problem! Though it is the first time that’s happened on this blog. Guess you’re special! 🙂 Anyways, though you say you have oily skin, the main emollient in the Skin Recovery Serum is olive oil. And since you use olive oil already… It’s got a ton of other great ingredients, but I’d only use it during the nighttime, since it includes retinol.

      And of course I’ve tried the original RESIST serum! It’s one of my HG products! If you see in my current routine, here: https://thetriplehelixliaison.wordpress.com/2012/02/16/my-story-routine-in-detail-v-0-07; my routine also found on the main “My Story & Routine” Page, I use the RESIST serum day and night!

      It’s not emollient or matte, but it does look a tad greasy. It doesn’t feel greasy though. It dries down decently. However, like I said in my first FutureDerm post, I use the alcohol in my foundation to encourage the evaporation of the silicones that cause this “greasy” appearance. At nighttime, it’s great for my oily skin. I don’t wake up with new breakouts; it’s just a fantastic product. There’s a detailed review of that product, and the other products used in my routine from the same series. Here’s the link for those: https://thetriplehelixliaison.wordpress.com/category/pages-in-detail/my-story-routine-in-detail/

      Those can be easily accessed by using the “Categories” drop-down menu on the top right side bar.

      I hope that all made sense!

      Posted by John | April 16, 2012, 5:16 am
      • Hi again, JOHN 🙂
        I hope you don’t mind me asking yet another question, but I was wondering if you’re familiar with the Neutrogena Healthy Skin Enhancer. It’s basically a tinted moisturizer which claims to also include retinol. It’s basically a BB cream done right. I bought it after reading the review on Beautypedia -seriously, I can’t remember how life was before Beautypedia- and I really like it, but I’ve always felt a little insecure about using it in daytime precisely because it contains retinol. It does have an SPF of 20, and the sunscreen ingredients are chemical. I see that you only use products with retinol at night, so I would like to know what are your thoughts on this product and if you think it’s safe for use in daytime.
        Did I mention I’m loving your blog?

        Posted by Isa | April 16, 2012, 3:46 pm
        • Of course I don’t mind. I love answering questions! 🙂

          I’m actually not a huge fan of the Neutrogena Health Skin Enhancer SPF 20. One, because it only contains titanium dioxide as its sole form of UVA protection. Titanium dioxide, unlike zinc oxide, is not very effective at blocking longer UVA rays (>340 nm). How much less effective it is than zinc oxide however, varies depending on a few factors like particle size and vehicular base. But it is known that titanium dioxie is measurably less effective against UVA rays than zinc oxide. Therefore, I don’t believe this product provides adequate broad-spectrum UVA and UVB protection.

          Now, this product also doesn’t contain any other beneficial ingredient other than retinol and a dash of vitamin E. The reason why retinol shouldn’t be used during the day is more about the fact that UV light will render it useless, and less about it increasing your skin’s photosensitivity. Because, while retinol does compact the epidermis and therefore make you more sensitive to the sun, it won’t be able to do exactly that once exposed to UV light. Therefore, while it’s great that this features retinol, sadly you won’t get any of its benefits.

          Thank you for your continued support and I’m thrilled to gain a new enthusiastic reader!

          Posted by John | April 16, 2012, 8:27 pm
      • Oh, and thank you for the product recommendations. I ended up getting the Resist serum because I had a bad reaction to the Skin Rec Mask and didn’t want to take the risk. Also, the Resist line is on sale! 😀

        Posted by Isa | April 16, 2012, 3:50 pm
  2. Hi Paul!

    I am a fan of Paula’s Choice and your reviews on her products made me realize I have never really looked up for products reviews on her products before… which is so odd considering I look for reviews on every product I use!

    Anyhow, your comments on this cream and why you stopped using it are making me rethink my routine. I’ve been using this cream since the beginning of the year, mostly because I found the skin balancing and hydralight moisturizers not hydrating enough to use over night. I do have oily skin but I get dry patches of flaky skin here and there. I love the texture of the Moisture Boost lotion and it does leave my skin moisturized and supple. But I have noticed that my enlarged pores, after having diminished with the use of my other PC’s products, are starting to become more evident, even if I use my BHA regularly. I don’t use it every night, but I do use it a good 3 or 4 times a week, and almost every day on my eye area (it has become drier lately which is another reason why I decided to purchase the Moisture Boost cream).

    Now, the only thing I’m confused about is if you experienced flakyness and clogged pores only in the eye area or if you’re talking about the rest of your face as well. You said you used it as an eye cream and although I’m very familiar with flakyness in that area, I have never seen clogged pores over there!

    I’m ordering more products soon so it’s such great timing that I found your review before placing my order. I have a lot of thinking to do! I’ll probably order a serum and see if I get better results by pairing it up with a moisturizer for my skin type.

    Thanks and keep up the good work!

    Posted by Isa | April 14, 2012, 3:27 pm
    • Hi Isa,

      I’m not sure who Paul is, but I’m guessing that’s me. Haha! My name’s John, but I guess Paul is fine too? Lol!!

      Good question about the MB cream! Yes I used it as an eye cream, but I also applied to areas that routinely became dry as well. FOr example, around my mouth, nose, cheeks, and between my eyebrows. I found that when using this product, my skin got significantly more flaky. Also clogged pores around the eye area looks like milia. You can google or Wiki that to see pictures. But yes, I’d get SO much milia under my eye and on my eyelids that it was unbearable.

      If this works for you, I’d suggest continued use. However, if you have quite oily skin, I would recommend this just because of the reasons I stated about sebum etc… in my Update History. I hope you know what I”m talking about. xD Anyways, if you have a drier skin type, consider using a glycolic acid treatment to decrease the amount of flakiness, should you decide to keep using the MBC.

      Overall however, if you’re going to order a serum of PC, I’d recommend the Skin Recovery Concentrate Serum if you have dry skin. The olive oil content really makes that serum both moisturizing and lightweight. It also contains retinol, but not as much as the new PC Retinol Serum. That too is also very moisturizing, but is a bit more expensive.

      Make sure to check out the routine reviews I’ve done the in Come Out with eyour Skin Care series! Read through the summaries of each to see if any of the reviewee’s skin types are like yours. See if you can get any benefit from those. I’ll link the summary page here:


      Let me know if you need more help/have more questions. Thanks for commenting!

      Posted by John | April 14, 2012, 8:03 pm

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