The opening gets really messy but it does get the job done. It leaves my face greasy and pale white but sunburn free. I like it.
*Discontinued. New version is greasy and has no oil control.
This is a nice sunscreen for those with drier skin. It feels a little greasy at first but the feeling goes away almost immediately. Although it may be mattifying at first, it doesn't do much for oil in the long-run. I can't use it on my oily skin because it doesn't do anything for it, but other skin types may like it.
Oil-free? Yes. Finish? Semi-matte. White cast? Yes, but it can be less of an issue if you let the sunscreen sink in. Flash photography? Not with this on. Removal? Oil is a must.
As of now (summer 2013), the following Shisiedo sunscreens are available in the US (these are the basic sunscreens, not including anything like lip protection, tinted products, etc.):
Extra Smooth Sun Protection Cream/Lotion N SPF 38 (Broad spectrum)
Ultimate Sun Protection Cream/Lotion+ SPF 50+ (Broad spectrum)
Urban Environment UV Protection Cream SPF 40 (Broad spectrum)
Urban Environment Oil-free UV Protector SPF 42 (Broad spectrum)
All of these products were recently reformulated and I have to admit I've very disappointed :( As someone with (dehydrated) oily skin, none of them work for me, including the urban enviro lotion, which is both too drying and lacking in oil control.
Although only the urban enviro lotion claims to be oil-free, from what I can tell looking at ingredient lists, none of these sunscreens contain oil. (But check anyway if that's important to you).
According to Shisiedo, extra smooth is best for drier skin types, ultimate is for activities that involve lots of sun exposure, and urban enviro is for everyday (though the lotion is targeted for oilier skin types).
The formulas are white, with the lotions on the runnier side, and the creams a little thicker. Both the extra smooth and ultimate formulas feel a bit greasy and leave my face with shine -- lotions and creams. Only the urban enviro lotion feels like nothing, though the urban enviro cream is a little mattifying in the beginning.
All of the sunscreens have some form of alcohol, but I don't think they would be considered drying for most. That is, except the urban enviro lotion, which my dehydrated oily skin cannot handle due to the high alcohol content. (Interestingly, even when I was very oily, I could not use this lotion, but for a different reason: little oil-control. So either I find it too drying initially, or not mattifying enough.)
I found the cream formulas a bit too rich for my oily skin, and none have the initial mattifying effect of their past formulations (except the urban enviro cream, but it's not that great anyway).
The ultimate cream was a favorite for the oily-skinned because of its mattifying abilities, but I can't say the same for the new formula. It leaves a shine after application (rather than a semi-matte finish) and it does not control oil.
As for a white cast, I find that I do see one with most of the formulas, particularly the ultimates. However, with the extra smooth and urban enviro formulas, I don't have a problem when I let them sink in. For the ultimates, I try to blend them in well and also give them some time to sink in.
In terms of photos, however, there is a ghostly face effect.
One thing to keep in mind with these sunscreens is that you really need to remove them properly -- preferably with an oil. They are known for their tenacity so if you experience any breakouts, consider your removal methods too.
This was the best spf I ever had. I have very sensitive acne prone skin and this DID NOT break me out. Not only did it protect my skin and not cause me acne but it served as one of the best primers I have ever owned. I have VERY oily skin and I've used expensive primers and my makeup slid right off by a couple of hours. But this would keep my makeup on for most of the day it was very mattifying. Sadly they have changed the product and it no longer works the same. :( I will not be repurchasing and I will have to start my search for a new spf and perhaps a primer as well...
I'm actually pleasantly surprised by this sunscreen. I put a "no" for repurchase because it's discontinued and reformulated .
I found this at Marshall's for 20$
It goes on smoothly like the name states , doesn't leave a white cast(nano zinc) like the 55 cream did and kept me matte all day. It's a little tough to spread on the neck though.
To remove this, like any silicone water -resistant sunscreen , an oil cleanser must be used or expect breakouts .
Even discounted at 20$ this is very pricey...
Edit: I'm lowering this down to a 3 . It leaves a white cast in my stubble (especially moustache and goatee area --after about 4 days of not shaving)i usually have this problem with thick sunscreens. I don't think the liquid would settle in this manner. Eh
I bought this sunscreen after much deliberation because of the hefty price tag, and after 6 months of almost daily usage, I still have a third left. Overall, I liked it. It does NOT break me out, and I have a *very* acne-prone skin. However, because it is water resistant, it does need to be taken off with a cleansing oil (or through double cleansing). It is not greasy, and while it does initially leave a white cast, I've found that that often goes away -- unless I've slathered on too much of it.
That said, I will not be repurchasing. I've acquired a bit of a deeper tan since using this. Since tanning is what I'm trying to prevent, this is not the best product for me. While 9.3% is a decent amount of Zinc Oxide in a sunscreen, I believe I'll have to look elsewhere for something with a higher ZnO concentration. If you're prone to sunburns, however, this is good because it has 5.9% Octinoxate, which is good against UVB rays.
Overall, a good daily sunscreen for those looking for a cosmetically elegant sunscreen.
This is a very good sunsreen but.....
It gave me a white cast and if I tried to reapply it after towel drying my face after swimming my face had white streaks....
On the good side it sets well over moisturizer and makeup on top , definitely can't put it on with not at least some powder because it makes me look like a ghost.
Funny thing is that after a few hours the whitness appears itsself through my makeup, and I do not like that at all.
It didn't break me out after one month use, most sunscreen does break me out.
I guess its great sunscreen for city use only and for very very very fair ladies.
Won't be buying this again.
I really like this product. I've been using it for about 3 weeks and I haven't had any breakouts (well I have but not because of this product). It has been so hard for me to find a good quality, physical SPF that doesn't break me out......I've tried so many natural ones that were either too greasy or they clogged my pores. This one may not be 100% natural but it works for me and from my experience with trying out so many different products is that when u find something that works, stick with it! It's oil-free, PABA free, paraben free AND it leaves my skin matte which I I love.....it goes on so smooth, my makeup goes on very well over it. It's very water resistant so u have to make sure to have good night time cleansing routine to get it all off....that's not a problem for me, between my OCM and the clarisonic I always go to bed with a super clean face! It doesn't feel heavy at all, the packaging is nice, it provides UVA and UVB protection, and it says it provides some anti-aging (antioxidants) properties which is a nice plus. I use about a dime size amount for my face/neck so I think it'll last me a good 3 months...... $32 (for 2 oz) I think this product is well worth it. This is not a moisturizer, don't expect it to do that (even though it does say it quenches dry skin.... it doesn't) but If you're oily/acne-prone and have not been able to find a good quality SPF to use under you're moisturizer then give this one a try!
WHAT IS IT? Very water-resistant silicone-based sunscreen
INGREDIENTS:-Octinoxate (7.4%) and Zinc Oxide (9.6%) Water, Cyclomethicone, Butylene Glycol, Octyl Methoxycinnamate, Dimethicone, Dimethicone Copolyol, Methyl Gluceth-10, Polybutylene Glycol/PPG-9/1 Copolymer, Disteardimonium Hectorite, Polymethyl Methacrylate, Talc, Trimethylsiloxysilicate, Glycerin, Hydrogenated C6-14 Olefin Polymers, Xylitol, Glutathione, Sodium Glutamate, Zinc Myristate, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Thiotaurine, Ectoin, Scutellaria Baicalensis Extract, Ononis Spinosa Root Extract, Dextrin Palmitate, Isostearic Acid, PEG-15, Calcium Stearate, Aluminum Distearate, Aluminum Hydroxide, Alcohol, Silica, Trisodium EDTA, BHT, Phenoxyethanol, Methylparaben, Ethylparaben, Fragrance, Zinc Oxide, Titanium Dioxide.
HOW DOES IT PERFORM? This product does indeed serve its intended purpose, which is to provide sun protection with both nano zinc oxide and octinoxate. My low rating for this product is based on the following: a) this is extremely water-resistant and difficult to remove even with a cleansing oil followed by a foaming cleanser on my skin - extensive cleansing like this disrupts my skin barrier and leads to b) severe acne breakouts both caused by the occlusive nature of the film formers which render this product water-resistant and aforementioned removal methods. Finally c) this product is very strongly fragranced and this fragrance lingers for hours and causes my eyes to water. People have asked if I am wearing cologne while wearing this product.
WOULD YOU BUY AGAIN? Never
PRICE: $45 CAD for 50ml
I'm not wowed by this sunscreen. In the past I've used Shiseido's lotion spf 55 and in my opinion that was better. I don't get a white cast from this and I don't find it drying at all. But I don't like the scent which while light seems to linger and after a while seems to bother me and the sunscreen seems to make my face itch. It does hold up well to everyday wear but I thought it would be more matte than it is. I can feel it on my face and by the end of the day my face feels slicker that I want. Makeup works okay over it but I find if I rub my face or scratch the sunscreen will roll up into shards or strings. So in the end it's okay but not great. Still searching for a sunscreen containing zinc oxide that I can wear daily and love.
This sunscreen, along with the Shiseido Ultimate Protection SP55, are the two best sunscreens I've found to date. Extra Smooth SPF 38 has a matte finish and, after being massaged into my skin, leaves a slight white cast on my medium-dark Indian skin. A white cast is part for the course in high SPF physical sunscreens, so this doesn't bother me, and it disappears completely once I dust mineral makeup powder on top. I find the SPF 55 to be more drying than the SPF 38, and the 55 also leaves a much more visible white cast. For those reasons, I prefer the Extra Smooth SPF 38 for daily use under makeup, although I'll break out the 55 on occasions where I need a lot of protection (for example, if I were going to the beach).