Paula's Choice Skin Balancing Ultra-Sheer Daily Defense SPF 30

Paula's Choice Skin Balancing Ultra-Sheer Daily Defense SPF 30
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3.6

27 reviews

48% would repurchase

Package Quality: 3.5

Price: $$$

Package Quality: 3.5

Price: $$$

Not tested on animals

INGREDIENTS

Active Ingredients: Oxybenzone 4; Avobenzone 3; Homosalate 7; and Octocrylene 2; (sunscreen agents).Other Ingredients: Water (Aqua), Butylene Glycol (slip agent), Silica (absorbent), Cetyl Dimethicone (silicone-based emollient), Aluminum Starch Octenylsuccinate (absorbent/thickener), Camellia Sinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract (antioxidant), Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice Powder (water-binding agent), Ascorbyl Palmitate (vitamin C/antioxidant), Phospholipids (cell-communicating ingredient), Superoxide Dismutase (antioxidant enzyme), Adenosine (cell-communicating ingredient), Tocopherol (vitamin E/antioxidant), Bisabolol (anti-irritant), Boerhavia Diffusa Root Extract (antioxidant/anti-irritant plant extract), Colloidal Oatmeal (plant-based anti-irritant), Panthenol (skin-conditioning agent), Ginkgo Biloba Leaf Extract (antioxidant), Salix Alba (Willow) Bark Extract (anti-irritant), Acrylate/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer (film-forming agent), Titanium Dioxide (opacifying agent), Sodium Hydroxide (pH adjuster), Steareth-21, Steareth-2, Polysorbate 20 (emulsifiers), Disodium EDTA (chelating agent), Phenoxyethanol (preservative), Sorbic Acid (preservative).


on 8/13/2016 10:44:00 PM

Age: 36-43

Skin: Sensitive, Fair, Neutral

Hair: Blond, Curly, Fine

Eyes: Green

This is my favorite warm month summer sunscreen when my skin is oily in the t-zone. It is very runny and you need to shake it before opening, IMO. It soaks into the skin quickly, dries with no cast or shine, and works very well under makeup. This is in a tube but I would prefer a pump since it is so runny.



on 8/5/2016 3:06:00 PM

Age: 25-29

Skin: Acne-prone, Olive, Cool

Hair: Black, Straight, Fine

Eyes: Black

I have been using this sunscreen for years. It's not my favorite sunscreen but I still use it because it is not very drying and didn't make me breakout. Sometimes sunscreen for combination-oily skin are really matte = drier on skin but this one is 'okay' - could be a little bit more moisturizing though. It can feel dry-tight after applying it. I sometimes apply a light moisturizer before. It's drier during the winter.

This sunscreen doesn't dry matte but it's not overly greasy either. You can see a layer of shine after applying it. I usually use blotting sheets to remove the excess oil. It does get greasy throughout the day too but I don't have to blot a lot.

This is a chemical sunscreen so it did stings my eyes but not often. Usually I don't feel any stinging around my eyes. Sometimes it burns or turns my skin red but that's when I over-exfoliate or irritated my skin beforehand. It is minimal for me though. If you have very sensitive skin, this sunscreen might not be a good fit for you. However I have sensitive skin and I can tolerate this chemical sunscreen. So it will depend on the individual.

I do like the runny texture of this sunscreen, it applies easily and absorbs quickly into the skin. Feels lightweight on the skin and not tacky or heavy. It leaves a slight white cast, but it's not that noticeable. It's more like a brighter skin tone. This wash off easily (non water-resistant) which I like. It's fragrance-free and I didn't notice any bothersome smell from this sunscreen.

It's hard to find a good sunscreen with good ingredients. If I can find a better sunscreen I would switch, but so far I didn't find a better one, be it physical or another chemical one. I always come back to this sunscreen. I have a love-hate relationship with this sunscreen!

*** FYI:
PC4Men Daytime Protect SPF 30 is the same sunscreen but cheaper:
From their website: "Our PC4Men Daytime Protect SPF 30 is actually identical to our Skin Balancing Ultra Sheer Daily Defense SPF 30, except for the change in packaging and placement in our men’s line."


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Age: 25-29

Skin: Combination, Fair, Neutral

Hair: Brunette, Curly, Other

Eyes: Green

I should have read the reviews before buying this. The texture is thin, but doesn't sink in quickly. It stings my face, smells like sunscreen, and is overall unpleasant to use.

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.


on 4/2/2016 11:38:00 AM

Age: 44-55

Skin: Combination, Olive, Neutral

Hair: Brown, Curly, Medium

Eyes: Brown

Pros

Effective Protection
Non-comedogenic
Not Greasy
Rubs In Well
UVA/UVB Protection

Cons

Stings eyes

Best Uses

Daily Use

I've been on a quest for facial sunscreen, and have been going through samples of PC products because I haven't had good luck with other brands. I am olive complected with "extreme" combination normal to oily skin and some sensitivity. I tried Resist Youth-Extending Daily Hydrating Fluid SPF 50, Skin Balancing spf 30, and Hydralight spf 30. I felt a little like Goldilocks and the three bears...

All three sunscreens were great for daily use: lightweight, absorbed quickly, left no white cast, non-greasy, just a touch of moisture for skin tending toward oilyness, didn't add to facial oil production throughout the day. All three are somewhat liquid in texture, but not too thin. This means they are easy to apply and don't feel mask-like as other sunscreens might.

Here is where the three differed:

Resist spf 50 (chemical sunscreen)--soothing, did not sting eyes, but left a sheen ie, was not mattifying on my skin

Skin Balancing spf 30 (chemical sunscreen)--ok on face but burned around my eyes, mattifying

Hydralight spf 30 (physical sunscreen)--soothing, did not sting eyes, and mattifying, a bit thicker than the others but easy to work into skin

In my case Hydralight was the "just right" solution to quell my sensitive eye area and provide some mattification. I also really loved the super light weight of Resist spf 50 and Skin Balancing. I think if the Resist product didn't leave a sheen, that would be my HG sunscreen since it provides a bit more protection, is non-irritating and has great anti-aging ingredients. Skin Balancing was also great as a lightweight handcream, leaving my hands feeling silky and smooth with no shine. For now, I'm going to stick with Hydralight as my full purchase, but all three are worthy of sampling.

Also note that Hydralight is being "discontinued". The same formula is being repackaged in the Calm line of products for Normal to Oily skin.

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.


Age: 44-55

Skin: Sensitive, Fair, Warm

Hair: Blond, Curly, Fine

Eyes: Brown

I begrudgingly write this rave review, as I have grown to loathe Paula Begoun (not her products). This was an impulse buy when I was at Pharmaca (one of my favorite little shops in my neighborhood where I love to go browse while I wait for a prescription). They recently started selling Paula's Choice products and they had some free samples. As soon as I tried this on the back of my hand, I knew I wanted to buy the full size tube. I've been using it everyday for two weeks and I love it. I am probably not the ideal candidate for this formula because I have very dry (scaly) rosacean, acne-prone, reactive, super-pale skin that burns really easily. The label says this is meant for normal/oily/combination skin. It does feel a bit astringent when I first apply it and I have had some facial flushing since starting to use it (though my rosacea flares tend to happen regardless of the products I use so I can't be sure of the cause).

I am obsessed with skincare and with sunscreen in particular. I've kissed a lot of sunscreen frogs on the journey to finding the three that I adore. I am adding this one to my collection. Here's why I love it:
- runny texture: this spreads easily with no chalky residue - makes it really easy to use the standard 1/4 teaspoon
- no ghostface: this is a chemical sunscreen so no mineral white cast
- not drying: label says it "hydrates without adding shine" and that is true -- it does offer a bit of non-greasy moisturizing
- the finish: lovely, natural finish - not matte, not shiny
- no acne: I swear my skin is better since starting to use this stuff -- it contains antioxidants so maybe it has something to do with that....

What I don't love about it:
- Tiny tube (2 oz) is not cheap ($28 US). If I use the recommended standard of 1/4 teaspoon daily, I will need to buy a new tube every 50 days. That's expensive, and exactly the kind of thing Paula has been so outspoken about for many years in her criticism of other cosmetics companies. Paula, you've gone to the dark side!

Overall, I LOVE this ss. It's as good as my beloved Vichy Capital Soleil Dry Touch for Face and that says a lot. Highly recommend!

8 out of 8 people found this review helpful.


on 3/22/2016 5:43:00 PM

Age: 25-29

Skin: Acne-prone, Olive, Neutral

Hair: Black, Wavy, Medium

Eyes: Brown

If you have acne-prone skin and want to try a sunscreen from Paulas Choice, I suggest you start with The Clear Mattifying SPf 30 rather than this one. IMHO is better for our skin type.

This one is creamier than the Clear SPf 30 which is watery (good thing for acne-prone skin). It also goes on white and then blends in to a transparent tacky then matte finish that feels like a film on the skin. I REALLY dont like that. I have some clogged pores today and I think is from this sunscreen, since nothing else has changed in my skincare/makeup routine. The oil control of this is nothing to brag about. I got as oily and sweaty as usual.

This one also smells more strongly to chemical sunscreen than the CLear Spf 30 one. I swear compared to the other one, applying Clear Spf 30 feels like slathering water on my face.

I will not repurchase this one, or buy anything else from the Skin Balancing line out of fear of breakouts. Im sticking to the Clear and Hydralight Paula's lines for now.


on 11/5/2015 8:45:00 PM

Age: 25-29

Skin: Combination, Medium, Not Sure

Hair: Brunette, Other, Other

Eyes: Brown

Why I will not repurchase,
-Stings my eyes if I accidentally get a trace of it, not to mention it will sting my under-eye area
-very liquid-ey/runny
-other options for similar cost, not to mention Canadian exchange rate right now is terrible.

Potential Pros
-Absorbs fairly quickly (i usually top it with a BB cream with spf as well)
-Works fine under makeup
-Does not become gritty after exercise/sweating
-Does not break me out/clog pores

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.


Age: 36-43

Skin: Other, Fair-Medium, Not Sure

Hair: Red, Other, Other

Eyes: Blue

I've been using this sunscreen every day for the last year (or more). I highly recommend it to anyone with oily or normal skin. Here are a few things to keep in mind though.

Pros:
Light texture
Non-greasy (not necessarily mattifying, but does not add to shine)
Well formulated
No scent

Cons:
Oxidizes around the opening, so you need to keep wiping it (just for aesthetics)
Takes time to get used to if you have sensitive skin (if you are using exfoliators or other medicated creams, or your skin is dry, this sunscreen will sting in the beginning, but I found that after consistent use, and taking care not to over-exfoliate the skin, the sting disappears)

I find that the prices of PC products have increased lately, and I continue to reduce my spending on cosmetics in general, but this particular sunscreen I will always reorder. I have not found a comparable item in that price range yet.

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.


Age: 19-24

Skin: Oily, Other, Not Sure

Hair: Black, Other, Other

Eyes: Black

I got this sun screen as a sample. At first, I feel that the texture of this sunscreen is a little thick. But after being absorbed by the skin, it actually feels pretty light. This sunscreen is definitely not as greasy and oily as other sunscreens, but still a little shine appeared on my face. Overall, not a bad sunscreen, and I like how light it feels after it is absorbed into the skin, but I am looking for a sunscreen that can do a even better job.


on 12/26/2014 3:16:00 PM

Age: 19-24

Skin: Combination, Tan, Warm

Hair: Black, Wavy, Fine

Eyes: Black

The texture is lovely but it stings around my eyes, that can't be a good sign. I won't be buying this again.

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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