Super Sensitive Shield SPF 30
This thin-textured daytime moisturizer with sunscreen would be great for super sensitive skin if it didn't contain so many problematic fragrant oils. Research has shown these are a distinct problem for all skin types, and why Dermalogica uses them in so many of their products is a mystery. There's simply no valid reason to do so other than creating fragrance, yet fragrance isn't skin care—and it's the last thing anyone with truly sensitive skin needs!
Chief among the problematic fragrant oils is lavender, which we discuss in More Info. We love that the mineral actives of titanium dioxide and zinc oxide provide broad-spectrum protection, and that the lightweight, fluid lotion formula contains some proven antioxidants, but these are offset by the number of fragrant ingredients that cannot calm skin.
- Provides broad-spectrum sun protection.
- Fluid, silky lotion texture is easy to apply.
- Expensive, which may discourage liberal application necessary to achieve the SPF rating on the label.
- Contains numerous fragrant oils known to cause irritation.
- Not calming in the least and a poor choice for anyone with truly sensitive skin.
Research indicates that components of lavender, specifically linalool, can be cytotoxic, which means that topical application causes skin-cell death (Source: Cell Proliferation, June 2004, pages 221–229). Lavender leaves contain camphor, which is a known skin irritant. Because the fragrance constituents in lavender oil oxidize when exposed to air, lavender oil is a pro-oxidant, and this enhanced oxidation increases its irritancy on skin (Source: Contact Dermatitis, September 2008, pages 143–150). Lavender oil is the most potent form, and even small amounts of it (0.25% or less) are problematic. Although it's fine as an aromatherapy agent for inhalation or relaxation, it is a must to avoid in skin-care products. (Sources: Psychiatry Research, February 2007, pages 89–96; and www.naturaldatabase.com).
Chemical-free, Broad Spectrum sunscreen helps protect and reinforce barrier lipids, which are often compromised in sensitized skin conditions. Contains our exclusive UltraCalming Complex. Formulated without artificial fragrances and colors.
According to company history, Dermalogica products came into being because founder Jane Wurwand could not find a spa-oriented skin-care line that met her criteria. She was dismayed that so many skincare lines aimed at the aesthetics market had products that contained alcohol, artificial colors, fragrance, mineral oil, and lanolin, ingredients he believed had a well-documented history of problems. That's true for fragrance and alcohol (and artificial colors to a lesser extent), but mineral oil and lanolin have no documented history of causing skin problems.
The line is positioned as a no-nonsense, no frills take on skincare, with clinically-inspired packaging that does protect its beneficial ingredients from light and air. Speaking of ingredients, Dermalogica does include a lot of beneficial ones in its skincare, though there are a number of formulas in the line that also make the misstep of including potentially-irritating fragrance ingredients.
For more information about Dermalogica now owned by Unilever, call 1-800-345-2761 or visit www.dermalogica.com.
About the Experts
The Beautypedia team consists of skin care and makeup experts personally trained by the original Cosmetics Cop and best-selling beauty author, Paula Begoun. We’re fascinated by skin care and makeup products and thrilled when they meet or exceed our expectations, but we’re also disappointed when they fail to perform as claimed, are wildly overpriced, or contain ingredients scientific research has proven can hurt skin.
Our mission has always been to help you find the best products for your skin, no matter your budget or preferences. Beautypedia’s thorough and insightful reviews cut through the hype and provide reliable recommendations for all ages, skin types, and skin tones.