Shiseido Ultimate Sun Protection Cream SPF 50+

No Image


13 reviews

23% would repurchase

Package Quality: 3.9

Price: $$$

Package Quality: 3.9

Price: $$$



Where to Buy

Start your review

on 1/1/2017 9:49:00 AM

Age: 56 & Over

Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium, Neutral

Hair: Brunette, Wavy, Fine

Eyes: Hazel

I'm shocked at all the negative reviews of this sunscreen, because I think it's terrific. I have light, oily-combination, sensitive skin and so I am always looking for a sunscreen which, a) has a high SPF and gives me complete protection from the sun's rays, b) doesn't leave my skin greasy (sadly, most sunscreens fail miserably here) and c) does not irritate my skin. Shiseido's Ultimate Sun Protection Cream delivers on all three counts. The only reason I took off a lippie is because it gives my skin a whitish cast, which is due to the high concentration of zinc dioxide, 16.4%, and I wish the company found a way to solve that.

on 5/12/2016 6:30:00 AM

Age: 44-55

Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium, Not Sure

Hair: Brunette, Other, Other

Eyes: Brown

I picked this up in a small size - 1.2 oz. I think - while checking out at Sephora - which is like the equivalent of the checkout lane at the grocery store for kids - irresistible! Ha! I'm always on the lookout for sunscreens with high levels of zinc oxide that are "cosmetically elegant".
I want it to not be super white or super shiny. I had to do a little extra blending with this, and it isn't real shiny after allowing it time to absorb. Yet - it's going back as fast as I can get it there! The alcohol smell is overwhelming - actual fumes, I think! - and it doesn't go away, leading me to think the formula is more straight up alcohol than anything else. Sure enough, by the end of the day my old face was completely parched, and my makeup was flaking off everywhere, including places like my nose, which usually has enough oil going on that that doesn't happen. Anyone who's read my other sunscreen reviews knows that I'm not put off by higher prices, either - as long as a product WORKS - but this is really expensive for what it is. It smells exactly like an alcohol-based spray sunscreen - and I wouldn't use one of those either. Ordinarily I think everyone's different, and what works for me may not work for you, and vice versa. But due to all that ALCOHOL - I don't see how this could be good for anyone's skin, particularly in the long term.

2 of 2 people found this helpful.

on 1/14/2015 12:58:00 PM

Age: 44-55

Skin: Combination, Fair, Cool

Hair: Other, Straight, Fine

Eyes: Other

Not for me. The Ultimate sun protection cream was way too thick and difficult to apply. I had to rub hard on my skin to apply, something I do not want to be doing to me skin. Also leaves a whitish cast to the skin. I do not feel that this lays well on the skin. My makeup did not apply well on top of this. Also, has a fragrance which I did not like. I do not care for fragrance in skin care products and especially sunscreens. I like Cerave spf 50 better than this even though it is a thicker cream, I am able to apply it to my skin. Other better sunscreens I like are MDsolarsciences spf 50 beauty balm or the face sunscreen spf 50.

on 9/6/2014 11:43:00 PM

Age: 36-43

Skin: Acne-prone, Fair-Medium, Cool

Hair: Brown, Straight, Fine

Eyes: Green

I have used this several times while working out in the yard this summer. The chemical stench when applying this takes me aback every time. When I first apply it, it's a very off-putting lavender color before it settles down. It says water resistant, but forget about it the very minute you start sweating. You'll get white dots of sunscreen where you're sweating (and this absolutely does sting my eyes and my eye area is extra sensitive and dry after using this) and you'll then have no coverage from the sun. I'm not asking for this to be waterproof, but if it says resistant it should resist coming off at the drop of a hat. My red cheeks and nose say it's time to throw this sample away. If you're going to sweat even a little, look elsewhere for sun protection.

on 3/31/2014 1:41:00 AM

Age: 25-29

Skin: Dry, Medium, Warm

Hair: Brown, Curly, Fine

Eyes: Brown

I tried this little blue tube after finishing a bottle of Shiseido's Urban Environment Cream (white tube). This stuff is pretty good, but it does pale my Indian skin a bit, and smells much more 'sunscreeny' than Urban Environment. However, after using a drugstore sunscreen for the past few weeks, I have really begun to miss my Shiseido suncreens. They're a little steep on price, and the amount you get is sad, but I feel they work much better than other suncreens, and the % of active ingredients in the tubes is higher than other physical suncreens with comparable SPFs (not sure how that works out...). They also are the right thickness for application, and sink into my skin well. However, when I repurchase, I'm going with Urban Environment. It's better, and I think SPF 30 is enough for me.

on 7/31/2013 10:39:00 PM

Age: 36-43

Skin: Sensitive, Fair, Cool

Hair: Blond, Curly, Fine

Eyes: Blue

ETA- I am upgrading this to my HG. I ran out a month ago and was cringing at the idea of being hooked on such an expensive sunscreen. So I tried really hard to find something else that worked as well. I bought cheaper sunscreen, I shopped my stash, I even tried another Shiseido SS because it was on sale. In that time, my skin and I have gone from having a low key love/hate relationship to a relationship that can be best described as tantrum-throwing toddler (my skin) /exhausted mom trying in vain to placate it (me.) My skin just hates EVERYTHING right now. I have tried and discarded a good 5 or so facial sunscreens just in the past month. So I finally caved and hit Sephora to pick up another tube of the Shiseido. While the price still annoys me, my overwhelming feeling is relief: that my sunscreen is taken care of, it will just work and I'm not wasting the money on a yet another product that I won't be able to use. ORIGINAL REVIEW-Effective sun protection that does not break me out or cause my sensitive skin to react. I have not had a sunburn since using this. Whereas before I could get one in 15 minutes or less once my sunscreen wore off. The price is steep, but you need so little, the tube has lasted me all summer. Would definitely repurchase.

on 7/19/2013 6:13:00 PM

Age: 56 & Over

Skin: Sensitive, Fair, Cool

Hair: Blond, Other, Other

Eyes: Green

I used the previous formula for several years and I loved it. This new formula is awful. I have combo skin and I'm very fair. This leaves my face white and takes awhile to soak in. The old formula was superior. I wish they would bring it back. I'm using MyChelle spf28 for now.

on 7/9/2013 5:32:00 PM

Age: 30-35

Skin: Combination, Other, Not Sure

Hair: Black, Other, Other

Eyes: Brown

Active ingredients: octinoxate 7.4%, octocrylene 3.0%, titanium dioxide 1.7%, zinc oxide 19.3%
Rating: PA+++; PPD ~9.8
Consistency: thickish lotion
Fragrance: smells like all Shiseido sunscreens - it's so familiar to me that I can't even describe it! Maybe a light, slightly sweetened sunscreen smell?
Finish: Took extra time to really rub it in all the way. Otherwise, it would've left a white cast even on my pale skin and would've looked greasy rather than glowy.
Wear: After 9 hours, skin had a bit of shine, but not too bad.
Gym: Did not sting eyes

3 of 3 people found this helpful.

on 6/7/2013 5:10:00 PM

Age: 19-24

Skin: Oily, Fair-Medium, Warm

Hair: Black, Other, Other

Eyes: Brown

This formulation replaced the old SPF 55, which was well-liked by those with oily skin because of its wonderful mattifying properties. Unfortunately, this new formula is nothing like the last. It is slightly greasy at first and then leaves my face a bit shiny, instead of absorbing quickly and leaving a semi-matte finish (which is what I'm used to). I find that the new ultimate lotion has the same problem, and both are not good for oily skin.

Others have commented on how white this sunscreen makes them look. I know what they mean, but if I let it sink into my skin for several minutes, I find that it helps. Flash photography, however, is still an issue.

In short, if you're looking at the SPF 50+ cream, it is not the mattifying HG that the previous formula was. It will not help with oil control or be suitable for flash photography. Make sure to remove properly (preferably with an oil cleanser).

While I did not like this for my oily skin, those with drier skin types may enjoy it and it is still a good sunscreen with broad spectrum protection and a high SPF.

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.

8 of 8 people found this helpful.

Age: 36-43

Skin: Sensitive, Fair, Warm

Hair: Blond, Curly, Fine

Eyes: Brown

I got this as part of the Sephora suncare sampler and I was excited to try it after hearing so many great things. The pros: it works - definitely protects my superfair skin from the sun; dries to a matte, non-greasy finish; it doesn't have fragrance. The cons: it's chalky and makes me look like a ghost, it's very dry and highlights every flake, it's hard to rub in, it makes my already-dry skin even drier, and it's hard to even read the words on the tube because of the orange type on the blue tube. Bah. Horrible.

Back to Top