Clinique Moisture Surge Intense – Review

Clinique Moisture Surge Intense (Boxed)

Back in early February, I did a long-overdue review for Clinique Moisture Surge. As you may or may not recall, that product ended up receiving a C+ for somewhat underwhelming performance given its high price. By the time that jar was empty, Clinique had released the Intense formulation of this product and It too was one of my little sister’s birthday gifts to me (How many are there? Even i’ve lost track!) Anyway. I’ve been using it for a over two months – so time for this to get reviewed as well!’

General Information:

Clinique categorizes its products into four skin types: Skin Type 1 is Very Dry to Dry 2 is Dry Combination 3 is Combination Oily and 4 is Oily. Under that spectrum I generally tend to fall between 1 and 2. While the original Moisture Surge formula is meant for “all” skin types, Moisture Surge intense is supposed to be for types 1 and 2. This indicates that Clinique believes, as the title also suggests, that this is a better product for parched skin.

Like the original moisture surge, MSI is an oil free moisturizer that is meant to “fortify and repair skin’s moisture barrier to keep moisture in and environmental irritants out.” Unlike the original formula, MSI is a cream-gel as opposed to gel-only formula.

It is sold for $36.00USD and contains 1.7oz of product. I’m a little over halfway done with this jar and i’ve had it for 2 1/2 months – I use about a dime amount in the mornings and nights.


Moisture Surge Intense (Jar)

The jar looks more or less the same, but is of a slightly sturdier brushed glass. Because this is a cream-gel, it doesn’t get as gunky around the mouth and twist portion but there is still the occasional buildup.


Again, this is a cream-gel. You can tell there’s a gel base when you’ve spread out the dollop of it, but honestly? It doesn’t FEEL like a gel on my skin – it feels like a very heavy cream.

Moisture Surge Intense (Open Jar)


Spread Out


I use this product as sparingly as possible, because it does leave a bit of a residue (discussed below.) It’s meant to be applied after your skincare regimen and before makeup. I tend to have to blot after using this.


One of my biggest peeves about the original Moisture Surge was that it left a tacky, sticky residue on my face. This still does, with the added blah of leaving quite a greasy feeling on my skin as well. It doesn’t matter how much I use, how dry my skin is or how long I give it to absorb. If you do wear makeup over it, I suggest you DO give it a minute or two to dry down because it will affect wear by creating a tragically slippery base on your skin.


Despite the greasy feeling this leaves behind on my skin and the blotting it requires afterwards – this does not moisturize my skin. I’ve tried it for rough patches and flakies as well with no results. This product just seems to sit on top of my skin and hang out there until it’s melted off. It does not help fine lines or tightness, as the original did for me, and generally didn’t do much for my dry skin.


I was pretty disappointed in this product, but I wanted to give it a fair amount of time to work. Will I be finishing this up? Probably – if only due to the cost. But it has not ended my search for the perfect moisturizer. I can’t imagine skin drier than mine, so I honestly can’t recommend this product to anyone -as it’s way too heavy for my skin and I can only imagine it creating a small oil spill on anything oilier.

Value: 3/5


Packaging: 4/5

Sturdy … if a bit bulky.

Application: 1/10

It takes a very long time to dry and absorb into the skin. It’s easy to overuse this product as well.

Wear: 0/10

This leaves a sticky, greasy residue and I cannot recommend it for wear under makeup.

Results: 3/10

It temporarily alleviates tightness and will do in a pinch for dryness. But it offers no long term (and by long term I mean past-an-hour) results.

Overall: 27.5% (F)

This is the lowest score given to a product on SB and if you know what a harsh grader I am, that’s saying something. Just goes to show. Newer isn’t always better!

Horribly disappointed,

<3 EA

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6 Responses to Clinique Moisture Surge Intense – Review

  1. Good to know! I don’t really care for Clinique skin care to be honest-the only thing I’ve ever liked was the Clinical dark spot corrector. I don’t get why people love their stuff so much.
    Tracy@Beauty Reflections recently posted..Shiseido Perfect Rouge Lipstick PK 417 Is The Perfect Summer Pink Lipstick

  2. Clinique is kind of popular here in Europe and many people with skin problems use it but for me, it doesn’t work.. I had a wash gel, a toner and a face cream but I didn’t finish none of them… T.T Lol but your 0/10 raiting explains it all very well.. the long absorbation time and the residue is what made (and still makes) me dislike most facial creams since these two points are so important to me!! You have an unbelievably generous sister =)
    ねこちゃん recently posted..Confessions of a Debaucher…

  3. Larie says:

    I used the other version a long time ago for added moisture, but I can’t remember what I thought about it. I think it did touch up dry spots for me, but I never repurchased so I guess I wasn’t that thrilled. I also felt like the gel evaporated from the jar, even though it was always tightly closed…hm.
    Larie recently posted..The Thursday Post

  4. Yikes! I hate being disappointed by skincare. I mean, I hate being disappointed by any beauty product I buy, but that feeling is magnified tenfold when I’m dealing with skincare. =/
    dani@callitbeauty recently posted..Physicians Formula’s PH Matchmaker Products – Cool Concept, Awesome Results!

  5. Ick— residuuueee. D: Residue and overly-strong scent are the two biggest detractors for face creams (especially moisturizers), IMO. :/

    And yikes– this is even greasier than the original formula, eh? Guh.

    Guess I know which brand’s moisturizers to steer away from. Haha
    ♥ Noxin ♥ recently posted..Review: Dollyeye Fairy (/EOS WM-205) Brown

  6. sara says:

    This is pathetic! I haven’t yet tried anything from their skin care range but now I know this is off my list for sure :D
    sara recently posted..Garnier Skin Naturals Oil Control Fairness Cream – Review

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