Paula's Choice Shine Stopper Instant Matte Finish


49 reviews

75% would repurchase

Package Quality: 4.4

Price: $$$

Package Quality: 4.4

Price: $$$

Not tested on animals


Water, Methyl Methacrylate/Glycol Dimethacrylate Crosspolymer, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Dimethicone, Cetearyl Alcohol, Glycerin, PEG-100 Stearate, Magnesium Aluminum Silicate, Glyceryl Stearate, Myristyl Myristate, Ceteareth-20, Xanthan Gum, Disodium EDTA, Benzyl Alcohol, Phenoxyethanol

on 9/19/2015 6:18:00 PM

Age: 19-24

Skin: Very Oily, Fair-Medium, Not Sure

Hair: Red, Wavy, Coarse

Eyes: Blue

If I could sum up this review in one sentence: why didn't I get this in my life sooner! I heard of paula's choice a couple of years ago, but trying new mattifying products is exhausting, usually unsuccessful, and I didn't feel comfortable since I wasn't super familiar with the brand. But then recently I read a review that mentioned low cost samples so I went online and bought a sample for about a dollar with free shipping.

Honestly, I didn't have high expectation for this. I've tried so many different products that are never really 100% successful. I've tried mattifying moisturizers, primers, and MoM. MoM has been great but it doesn't last all day and although I've been using Becca matte primer for the last year it's a horrendous texture and doesn't last all day either.

So back to this product - I got about 3 uses out of this sample and tested it in 3 different ways. What I learned from my experiments is that this bad boy works amazing all on it's own. I don't need a primer or even MoM! I don't even need an oil controlling foundation! When I used my L'oreal infallible and my Revlon colorstay this stuff did not budge - I was matte and flawless ALLLLL DAYYY. A full 12 hours. But what amazed me is that on a day that I went to a theme park in hot and humid Florida, all I used is my Clinique Dramatically Different moisturizer then this and then a non oil controlling foundation (L'oreal nude magic) and I was the only who was not a sweaty oily mess. Which is crazy because usually I'm the first one who's drenched in oil and even when I got home nine hours later, my makeup was still flawless. I was shocked and amazed to say the least.

This product is a miracle, truly HG status. It cut out two to three steps I normally had to take which saves me money, time, and just makes my beauty routine easier. It keeps me matte better than any product, it blurs my pores, it's light and smoothes my skin for a better base to apply makeup to or wear alone. I thought it was sort of expensive but when I received it in the mail the tube was huge! And I barely even use more than a pea-sized amount, if that. I paid about $18 because of coupon codes, free shipping, they offer full refunds if you don't like it, and that's cheaper than all of the higher end brands I've tried yet 100% more effective. Best purchase I've ever made for my oily skin.

NOTE: i've noticed the effectiveness tends to depend on the amount of time I let it "set". So I make sure after I apply it, I wait a few minutes (make a smoothie, walk the dog, etc), and then apply my makeup. It seems to hold up longer if I wait before applying makeup.

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

on 9/3/2015 10:33:00 PM

Age: 19-24

Skin: Oily, Other, Not Sure

Hair: Black, Other, Other

Eyes: Black

This primer is the best primer that I have ever tried. Perfect for oily skin. Compare to not using a primer with my makeup on, this primer significantly reduces the oil on my skin. After an 8-hour shift, my face still has minimal oil, with no touch ups. Love this stuff. Only thing is that they ship from the US and it takes forever to get to Canada and the exchange rate sucks. Otherwise this would probably be the only primer that I would use.

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

on 6/28/2015 11:09:00 AM

Age: 56 & Over

Skin: Oily, Fair, Neutral

Hair: Brunette, Straight, Fine

Eyes: Hazel

Not for the acne prone! My skin needs to breath. This is like plastic wrap on my skin. If the oil can't come out, it sits just below the epidermis and pools into a blemish. I much prefer Avene Mattifying Fluid, which tones down the oil production instead of just keeping the oil from sweating out. Thankfully, I just used a sample of this instead of buying a full-size tube.

on 6/13/2015 12:01:00 AM

Age: 30-35

Skin: Other, Other, Not Sure

Hair: Other, Other, Other

Eyes: Other

This is a great primer for oily skin. It helps foundation from melting off in patches and mattifies the skin.

I do find that I have to be careful to only use a small amount or it starts to 'ball up' on my skin. I would only use this in the summer, it is too mattefing for winter time.

on 6/9/2015 2:38:00 PM

Age: 25-29

Skin: Combination, Fair, Neutral

Hair: Blond, Straight, Fine

Eyes: Blue

This is a good primer for keeping the oilies at bay. I have combination skin with an oily t-zone.


- Mattifies the skin instantly and keeps the oil at bay for several hours.

- Leaves the skin feeling smooth and a little powdery.

- Doesn't ball up under or on top of foundation.

- Doesn't look cakey.

- Makes foundation last longer, since it's not being eaten up by the oils.


- You can only buy it online.

- Quite expensive at 27,90€ (Europe's being fucked over here, as usual. It's $23 in the States...).


Best oil-control primer I've tried. Easy to use, does what it says on the tin. Since it's so pricey, I only use it on special occasions or when I know I won't have time or opportunity to blot during the day. Would definitely repurchase.

5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

on 6/6/2015 4:22:00 AM

Age: 19-24

Skin: Combination, Medium, Not Sure

Hair: Brown, Other, Other

Eyes: Brown

LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOVE THIS PRODUCT. I have REALLY oily skin, and Texas summers sure don't help things. Thankfully, this is awesome for keeping the shine in check. I can slather this on pretty generously and it'll hold the shine in check for several hours. I can also apply product over this without it looking cakey, unlike what some other people have said. I've gone through like 3 of these and I hope PC never discontinues this.

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

on 5/21/2015 11:19:00 AM

Age: 36-43

Skin: Oily, Tan, Not Sure

Hair: Black, Other, Other

Eyes: Brown

Please believe me when I say I've tried just about everything out there to control my oily skin! I came across this product and ordered a few samples...I WAS AMAZED at how well this works. I quickly ordered a full tube and absolutely love it soooo much! I will be a faithful user of this product need to look any further for the perfect product to control my oily skin, I FINALLY FOUND IT.

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

Age: 30-35

Skin: Acne-prone, Fair-Medium, Neutral

Hair: Blond, Wavy, Medium

Eyes: Brown

Jesus Maria, this stuff actually works. It works SO WELL, I am worried I may finally begin to age. I always credited excess oil production for freezing my forehead and brow in time. I am an absolute oil slick. A shiny wonder. I could solve the energy crisis with my t-zone. I have much natural resource. You get the idea.

This keeps my t-zone dry and matte for hours. I do not mess with "blotting papers" because I can find "napkins" everywhere, and they all remove or rearrange your makeup, I find, no matter the marketing claim. This product is a light cream with MICROSPONGE TECHNOLOGY (so you know this happened in a laboratory filled with geniuses) and you use a little bit and TAP it gently on your sebaceous areas AFTER applying makeup. The cream is white but it turns out to look like nothing after you tap it on (but I am already white, so....).

I don't know what else to say because it is extremely simple to use, complicates nothing in your universe, and works. It is quite expensive, but you can do like me and order a bunch of samples.

21 out of 21 people found this review helpful.

on 4/5/2015 10:48:00 PM

Age: 30-35

Skin: Acne-prone, Fair, Not Sure

Hair: Brown, Other, Other

Eyes: Other

This primer did a great job of mattifying my oily and always shiny skin, probably better than any other primer that I've tried. It has a powdery, almost chalky finish. Unfortunately, when I tried to layer BB cream or foundation over it, I was left with a cakey mess. I tried several types of applications...fingers, brush, sponge...with the same results. I've never had this issue with any other primers. If you have fantastic skin that doesn't require foundation or BB cream, and just need something to control shine, this might be ideal for you. Otherwise, not recommended.

3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

on 1/28/2015 11:27:00 AM

Age: 25-29

Skin: Acne-prone, Fair, Neutral

Hair: Blond, Straight, Medium

Eyes: Blue

I really liked this product, but it ended up breaking me out. :(

I bought some (very cheap!) samples of it from the Paula's Choice website and used it the way it is recommended - by patting it over top of your foundation, not underneath. I stippled it on with an ELF foundation brush. The first time I used it I put it underneath my foundation and it did not work well at all, so I recommend sticking to the instructions.

If it wasn't for the fact that it caused me to break out, I would give this product 5 stars because it worked GREAT. My skin is disgustingly oily, but this kept me totally matte (like, almost TOO matte - we're talking "just got done applying my makeup" matte) for 7-8 hours and it was only by the end of my 9-hour work day that my skin had the slightest bit of sheen (but like, a normal-human sheen, not an oil-slick sheen like I would usually have). I was really loving this until the 3rd day I was using it I noticed I had a little cluster of bumps on the apple of my cheek (normally don't get acne there). The next day one of them had become a huge red cystic zit and that's when I decided to stop using it.

This product has dimethicone, which isn't usually good for acne-prone skin. I was trying to be optimistic but ultimately no matter how well a product works, if it breaks me out I'm not going to keep using it :/. This could be great for someone with less acne-prone skin, though.

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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