City Block Sheer Oil-Free Daily Face Protector protects skin from sun damage with its actives of titanium dioxide and zinc oxide. The lightweight but still moisturizing base (yes, it really does moisturize so you don't need a separate product unless your skin is very dry) is best for normal to dry or sensitive skin, including those dealing with rosacea. Clinique included a very good blend of antioxidants and cell-communicating ingredients, so this is highly recommended for those seeking a gentle sunscreen. It is slightly tinted to offset the whitening effect from the amount of mineral sunscreens it contains.
Some Clinique consultants insist this product isn't a moisturizer. Don't believe it: this may not be labeled or positioned as a moisturizer per se, but it absolutely contains moisturizing ingredients. Unless you have very dry skin, you will not need to pair this with a separate moisturizer, so save your money!
Note: This product was recently downgraded from our top rating to three stars, which is considered good. The reason for the change is due to the prevailing recommendation that your daytime sun protection product be rated SPF 30 or greater. This revised recommendation is due to the fact that most people are not applying sunscreen liberally enough to earn the stated level of protection on the label; therefore, a higher SPF rating will be more advantageous. See the More Info section for additional details.
Sunscreens Rated SPF 25: A growing body of current research has demonstrated that it's better to use a sunscreen rated SPF 30 or greater to ensure adequate defense against the sun's aging UV rays. SPF 25 is an option, but only if you’re willing to apply liberally and your skin will be seeing five hours of daylight or less. While this sunscreen will provide the SPF number on the label and has UVA-protecting ingredients. Applying an SPF 30-rated sunscreen under a foundation, tinted moisturizer, or BB cream that offers broad-spectrum SPF 30+ will take far better care of your skin. Plus, this layering approach ensures your skin gets sufficient sun protection even if you’re not applying liberally. For a list of UVA sunscreen actives, see the Cosmetic Ingredients Dictionary entry on PaulasChoice.com.
Scientists believe 80% of all skin damage before age 60 is sun related. Make new City Block Sheer Oil-Free Daily Face Protector SPF 25 your urban necessity. Sheer, high-level broad-spectrum UVA/UVB daily sun protection. Lightweight formula helps wick away perspiration, absorb excess oil so makeup looks fresher, longer. Perfect alone, or as an invisible under-makeup primer. No chemical sunscreens. Appropriate for eye-area, sensitive skins.
Active: Titanium Dioxide (7.3%), Zinc Oxide (6.9%), Other: Water, Trioctyldodecyl Citrate, Butylene Glycol, Cyclopentasiloxane, Dimethicone, C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, Steareth-2, Stearyl Heptanoate, Silica, Lecithin, Ammonium Acryloyldimethyltaurate/VP Copolymer, Gentiana Lutea (Gentian) Root Extract, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Extract, Hordeum Vulgare (Barley) Extract, Betula Alba (Birch) Bark Extract, Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Fruit Extract, Laminaria Saccharina Extract, Saccharomyces Lysate Extract, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seedcake, Sodium Hyaluronate, Sorbitan Tristearate, Linoleic Acid, Polyquaternium-51, Caprylyl Methicone, Sorbitol, Sodium RNA, PEG-40 Stearate, Caprylyl Glycol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Phytantriol, Stearic Acid, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Cellulose, Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate, Stearyl Dimethicone, Ascorbyl Tocopheryl Maleate, Nordihydroguaiaretic Acid, Linolenic Acid, Pantethine, Bisabolol, Ceteth-2, PEG/PPG-18/18 Dimethicone, Polyglyceryl-6 Polyricinoleate, Steareth-20, Isopropyl Titanium Triisostearate, Propylene Glycol Dicaprate, Sodium Stearate, Nylon-12, Citric Acid, Aluminum Hydroxide, Nylon-6, Hexylene Glycol, Xanthan Gum, Disodium EDTA, BHT, Phenoxyethanol, Titanium Dioxide, Iron Oxides
Strengths: A few excellent moisturizers and serums; excellent sunscreens; very good cleansers and eye makeup removers; unique mattifying products; impressive selection of foundations, good concealers; some remarkable mascaras; much-improved eyeshadows, lip colors and blush formulas.
Weaknesses: Bar soaps (which can clog pores and dull skin); alcohol-based toners; unfortunate choice of jar packaging for antioxidant-loaded moisturizers.
Estee Lauder-owned Clinique launched the concept of cosmetics being "allergy-tested," "hypoallergenic," "100% fragrance-free," and "dermatologist tested." Of those marketing claims, the only one with significance is "100% fragrance-free," which, for the most part, Clinique maintains (although it does add some fragrant extracts to a few products). Unfortunately, terms like “hypoallergenic” and “dermatologist tested” aren’t regulated by the FDA and can mean anything—thus, you still need to rely on the ingredient list to tell you whether their product contains any ingredients with the potential to irritate skin.
That inconvenient fact aside, Clinique is leading the way with cutting-edge, state-of-the-art moisturizers and serums, plus some formidable makeup and more than a few excellent sunscreens. While Clinique has some products that we see as missteps for reasons discussed in their reviews, more than ever, what they offer is quite good (just have realistic expectations, as some of their claims go beyond what their products are capable of).
Turning to makeup, Clinique continues to offer a vast palette of colors and textures, especially with their enormous selection of foundations—many of which feature effective sunscreens. Without a doubt, the numerous formulas offer something for every skin type and almost every skin color—though the blushes, eye makeup and lip colors are frequently not pigmented enough for deeper skin tones.
The bottom line is that, despite a few shortcomings, Clinique is one of the most comprehensive (and comparably affordable) department-store makeup lines, and it is completely understandable why they enjoy such broad appeal.
Note: Clinique is categorized as one that tests on animals because their products are sold in China. Although Clinique does not conduct animal testing for their products sold elsewhere, the Chinese government requires imported cosmetics be tested on animals, so foreign companies retailing there must comply. This requirement is why some brand’s state that they don’t test on animals “unless required by law”. Animal rights organizations consider cosmetic companies retailed in China to be brands that test on animals, and so does the Beautypedia Team.
For more information about Clinique, call (800) 419-4041 or visit www.clinique.com.
The Beautypedia and Paula’s Choice Research teams have one mission: To help you find the best products for your skin, whether they’re from Paula’s Choice or another brand. By combining efforts, we’re able to share scientific research and remain committed to the highest standards based on our decades of experience objectively reviewing thousands upon thousands of skincare and makeup formularies in all price ranges.
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