12.03.2014
23
5115
Healthy Skin Enhancer SPF 20
Rating
1 fl. oz. for $10.49
Category:Makeup > Foundations With Sunscreen > Tinted Moisturizer w/ Sunscreen
Last Updated:12.03.2014
Jar Packaging:No
Tested on animals:Yes
Review Overview

Healthy Skin Enhancer SPF 20 combines an in-part titanium dioxide sunscreen with retinol and a hint of color, all of which enhance skin due to their respective qualities. Moreover, there is more than just a dusting of retinol in this product, which makes it unique! It has a light, creamy texture and a satin finish appropriate for those with normal to dry skin. If an oily T-zone is an issue, this product should be set with powder to reduce the sheen it leaves on skin. The six sheer shades are great and include options for fair (but not very fair) to tan skin tones. In addition—and this is again unusual for a foundation—plenty of antioxidants are included. This product proves that Neutrogena is capable of setting new makeup benchmarks for their drugstore contemporaries to strive for, rather than just keeping up with their competitors.

Due to this product's translucent bottle packaging it is necessary to make sure you protect it from excess light exposure. For best results, store in an opaque makeup bag or drawer/cabinet.

Note:Although this foundation provides broad-spectrum sun protection on its own, you must apply it liberally and evenly to get the stated level of protection. A sheer or spot application will not provide the amount of sun protection the label indicates. If you’re not likely to apply this foundation liberally, we recommend applying it over a moisturizer with sunscreen rated SPF 15 or greater and setting your foundation with a pressed powder rated SPF 15 or greater.

Claims
Ingredients

Active: Octinoxate (7%), Octisalate (3%), Titanium Dioxide (5.1%), Other: Water, Isopropyl Isostearate, CyclopentaSiloxane, Dimethicone, Butylene Glycol, Glyceryl Stearate, Cetyl Alcohol, Cetearyl Alcohol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Retinyl Palmitate, Retinol, Arginine, Olive Fruit Extract, BHT, Silica, Polysorbate 20, Sclerotium Gum, Tetrasodium EDTA, Erythorbic Acid, Isostearyl Palmitate, Polysilicone-11, PEG-100 Stearate, Ammonium Polyacryloyldimethyl Taurate, PEG-75 Stearate, Ceteth-20, Steareth-20, Ethylparaben, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Phenoxyethanol, Fragrance, May Contain: Iron Oxides, Lauroyl Lysine

Brand Overview

Neutrogena At-A-Glance

Strengths: Inexpensive; several recommended cleansers; retinol options, in stable packaging; vast selection of sunscreens, most of which offer excellent UVA protection; several fragrance-free options; many of the Healthy Skin products are state-of-the-art; the foundations with sunscreen provide sufficient UVA protection; some praiseworthy makeup items.

Weaknesses: An overabundance of overlapping anti-aging products that is perennially confusing for consumers; irritating bar soaps; lackluster to downright bad toners; a handful of bland moisturizers and eye creams; some sunscreens too much alcohol or problematic preservatives; most of the Deep Clean products are terrible; mostly disappointing concealers; the lip balms with sunscreen provide inadequate UVA protection.

Johnson & Johnson–owned Neutrogena has been around for over 50 years, and they've come a long way since they launched their first transparent, bronze, detergent-based bar soap (it also contains tallow). The bars are still sold, and while we still don't recommend them (they are too drying for all skin types), the good news is that Neutrogena has come a very long way from where they started. In fact, several of their products represent truly state-of-the-art options.

Strolling the skin-care aisles of any drugstore or mass-market store reveals that Neutrogena vies for shelf space and prominence with only one other brand, Procter & Gamble's Olay. For the most part, both companies offer a similar assortment of products, with Olay being slightly more focused on anti-aging products and Neutrogena going for broader appeal, offering a nearly equal amount of antiwrinkle and anti-acne products. Regrettably the latter category presents few viable options.

Where Neutrogena really excels (and has for years) is with water-soluble cleansers, AHAs, retinol, and sunscreen products. Their Healthy Skin lineup offers some beautifully formulated moisturizers with glycolic acid, and the sunscreens offer something for everyone, including some ingenious options for those with oily skin (or anyone who finds the texture of high-SPF products as unappealing as slathering your skin with Crisco).

A recent self-proclaimed advance in sun protection came with Neutrogena's Helioplex complex. It is not the superior breakthrough Neutrogena makes it out to be. It's a good system to keep avobenzone stable for longer, but Helioplex isn't the only way to get the most out of this important UVA sunscreen. If it were, why didn't Neutrogena scrap all of their other sunscreens that don't use Helioplex technology? And why do they still offer a handful of SPF-rated products that leave skin vulnerable to UVA damage? Although they offer a proportionately greater number of sunscreens that provide excellent UVA protection, it's hard to unequivocally deem them a sun-care leader when they still sell inadequate sunscreens.

It's common to see commercials and magazine ads for Neutrogena's plethora of products designed to combat breakouts and blackheads. It's nothing short of amazing that, after all these years, the majority of these products, while well intentioned, still don't get it right. Far too many of them contain irritating ingredients such as alcohol, witch hazel, and menthol, none of which are the least bit helpful for someone struggling with breakouts. If your dermatologist recommends these products for acne without reservation, definitely consider a second opinion! Even Neutrogena's on-the-spot benzoyl peroxide product contains some potentially problematic thickening agents. Despite this, if you choose carefully, there are some great products (including a BHA lotion) that can make a positive difference.

What's most frustrating and, frankly, surprising, is that Neutrogena's enormous assortment of products represents both the best and the worst the cosmetics industry has to offer. Given their worldwide distribution and research capabilities, they really should be offering a consistent range of effective, irritant-free products to address a variety of skin types and conditions. As things stand now, healthy, protected skin is only assured if you know which Neutrogena products to look for and which ones to never put in your shopping cart.

For more information about Neutrogena, owned by Johnson & Johnson, call (800) 582-4048 or visit www.neutrogena.com.

Neutrogena Makeup

Neutrogena's "beautiful and beneficial" pronouncement is a great tag line, but most of their makeup doesn't live up to that assertion. This line was lacking in several key areas when it first hit store shelves in 1999, and although some things have improved, the number of problematic products is a bit startling. (We are not aware of any cosmetic line that uses menthol or its derivatives as often as Neutrogena.) Each product carries on about the vitamins it contains, yet compared to the leading roles played by cosmetic staples like silicones and thickening agents, the vitamins have mere cameo roles, and as such have little to no impact.

There are a few key items to seek out, especially if you're looking for makeup with excellent sun protection. We also found their lip gloss to be one of the best at any price, and a few of their foundations successfully bridge the gap between skin care and makeup.

The most frustrating aspect of this line is that almost all of it is packaged so you cannot see the color. Even worse, the color swatch on the box is a poor representation, not only of how the color looks in the compact, but also how it looks on your skin. What would truly be beneficial is for Neutrogena to offer more revealing packaging or provide testers or offer trial sizes. Their overall collection and in-store displays aren't nearly as tempting as most other drugstore makeup lines, so in most cases they're relying on their constant magazine and television ads to drive shoppers to explore the world of Neutrogena makeup, or they're relying solely on those who don't mind guessing what color they are really buying. It's obviously working, because despite the problematic elements, this is a line that has survived and is very well distributed.

About the Experts

The new Beautypedia Team proudly and unequivocally maintains the commitment to help you find the best products possible for your skin. We do this by relentlessly pursuing and relying on published scientific research so you will have unbiased information on what works and what doesn't-and the sneaky ways you could be making your skin worse, not better!


The Beautypedia Team reviews all products using the same research, criteria, and objectivity, whether the product being reviewed is from Paula's Choice or another brand.

Member Comments
Summary of Member Comments
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06.27.2015
Love it!

This is one of the best tinted moisture I've ever used. Lightweight coverage that I can easily build on if I need more. It doesn't look or feel greasy. But being a moisturizer, it leaves a dewy finish. That might be desirable characteristic for some users but I have oily skin. I have to use a mattifying primer and powder when I wear this.

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Reviewed by
Anonymous
06.14.2015
foundation

normal to dry sheer coverage

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Reviewed by
Nancy C.
05.05.2015
Easy fix for translucent container

I love this product and highly recommend it for mature skin. My simple fix for the translucent container is the cardboard cylinder inside your toilet paper roll! The product fits perfectly down in the cylinder and protects it from damaging sunlight. Great coverage, fragrance fades as soon as applied and doesn't sink into lines on your face. Great price too!

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Reviewed by
Sheri, M
04.29.2015
Great Light Coverage

This is a great multi-purpose product. I like simplicity, so I stick to the cleanser/toner/moisturizer morning routine, and this eliminates the need for an anti-aging serum and an additional sunscreen. It does get rather dewy, so at lunch I touch up with a powder foundation with SPF. I apply it with my fingertips and it goes on evenly every time. I would certainly recommend this product.

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Reviewed by
Caroline R
04.17.2015
Far too Sheer

I really wanted to like this product given the good ingredients and the fantastic ratings and reviews. However, my skin is in pretty good shape without a lot of enlarged pores, blemishes, or discoloration and this product did not offer any coverage at all. I applied three layers and it did not look like I had anything on my skin at all. I was hoping for a light solution to look more done while wearing minimal makeup but unfortunately this didn't provide even that small amount of coverage.

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Reviewed by
Lisa H.
02.25.2015
uses

n-d.....semi matte finish

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Reviewed by
CHRISTINE J.
01.29.2015
Excellent product, but storage and shelf exposure a concern

An excellent, creamy, very light coverage product I've used for years. However, the package is translucent, and even though you may keep it in a dark cosmetic bag or a drawer, it may have been sitting on a store shelf for months, exposed to light. I've switched to Too Faced tinted balm until Neutrogena changes the packaging.

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Reviewed by
Lisa H
10.04.2014
TERRIFIC

Truly an excellent product. This is LIGHT coverage! If you need lots of coverage get something else. It is best applied with a foundation brush, remarkable results!

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Reviewed by
Anonymous
08.28.2014
Follow up to last review

After wearing several times, Not as impressed as my initial review...definitely worth a try but I won't be repurchasing even I were needing something as a temporary back-up to my regular face base. It fades unevenly.

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Reviewed by
LL
08.05.2014
Adding to the positive reviews

It is always worth trying a good to best (Paula's rating) easy to find product (no more than $15!) so when you don't like you don't have to feel bad about the $ you spent... even better when it delivers the results conducive to Paula's review. I've been using this for a week & like other's comments the texture is really great for a drugstore product. It is whipped without being marshmallowy or too airy...applies fantastic & leaves a really nice skin-like finish that lasts.

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Reviewed by
LL
07.24.2014
Fragrance added

Not noted in this review is the inclusion of fragrance in this foundation. Disappointing for an otherwise innovative formula. I rated all 1s, but really, I can't use it due to the fragrance'll I'll have to keep looking :( .

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Reviewed by
Deb H.
04.16.2014
"Healthy Skin" Enhancer = Light Coverage

A lot of people complain about the lighter coverage this product has, but that's somewhat it's intention. It's a product meant for people who only *need* light coverage. It's supposed to enhance your already healthy skin. (Or so they claim). Personally, I always finish my make up with a light loose powder, which combined with this produce gives just the right coverage and keeps my skin from being too oily or too dry. I wouldn't use this product alone unless my skin was near flawless.

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Reviewed by
Sabrina Q.
03.05.2014
So far best tinted moisturizer/BB cream yet

Loved this product. It goes on similar to Lancôme but for a fraction of the price. The color was spot on and worked well and seemed to adjust when I put on self tanner underneath the product.

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Reviewed by
Janean
01.13.2014
Be aware this product has fragrance

I wish the Beautypedia review mentioned this product's very potent fragrance. Yes, ingredients are listed, but in the past, you could assume that products earning Paula's "best" rating either had no fragrance, or had a small amount of fragrance that was duly noted in the review. Apparently that is no longer the case, which is disappointing.

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Reviewed by
APRIL H.
10.10.2013
Back it went

After reading not only Paula's review but other members as well I was looking forward to trying this. Prepped my skin with moisturize as well as a foundation primer. This product couldn't even cover the pores on my nose. I let it dry and tried to apply another layer to no avail. Since I'd already applied my eyeshadow etc I wasn't about to start over so I took another tinted moisturizer I had and tried to fix the best I could. This product was promptly returned! Now back to the drawing board.

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Reviewed by
Peggy F.
10.06.2013
Best tinted moisturizer with sunscreen I've used

I have used this product for 2-3 years now,absolutely the best! I've tried others but always came back to this one. It is perfect for what I want - The coverage is not too sheer and not too thick, the shades are beautiful, the texture is wonderful, not dry and not greasy, and my skin looks great wearing it and seems to be improved by it as well. I don't understand the comment re retinol can only be used at night, if that were true, should eliminate AHA/BHA during the day as well? Doubt it.

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Reviewed by
Cath P
09.20.2013
Retinol not meant for daytime

I haven't purchased this product because I don't understand why you would want to put retinol on your face during the day. Isn't it an ingredient that makes skin sensitive to the sun? The description sounds great, and obviously I love the idea of putting a great ingredient on my skin... but from my understanding, retinol is a product best used at night.

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Reviewed by
Chelsey E.
08.10.2013
Perfection!

For me, this is the perfect tinted moisturizer and even provides more than a little coverage. Maybe it's because the shade is so perfect. I have medium skin tone and use Neutral to Tan 40. I discovered it thanks to Paula's favorable review. You can apply it like a moisturizer and not worry about using too much. It's truly a "me only better" product.

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Reviewed by
AMY M.
03.09.2013
No Difference

This product is terrible. You couldn't tell I was wearing anything. This has very sheer coverage and personally sheer coverage is completely pointless. I'm returning it.

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Reviewed by
Liz B
02.06.2013
Been using it for years, good product

I am a male who likes to use a light foundation to even out skin tone. This one has worked great for me since Neutrogena introduced it. It has served its purpose, and I do wear an SPF moisturizer underneath to get maximal protection, as I am not going to apply this liberally or it would look odd on the face and the product gone in 2-3 weeks. I have enjoyed using this product, but I think I am moving on to something different now, such as Paula's new Resist foundation.

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Reviewed by
pavlova
01.27.2013
My very fave

I am almost 72 and this is my very favorite foundation/sunscreen/moisturizer/retinol treatment. I hope Neutrogena never discontinues it. I love it.

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Reviewed by
Pat
01.01.2013
Great product with light coverage

As far as tinted moisturizers go, this one has a generous tint that goes beyond just sheer coverage. It goes on like a foundation: thick, creamy, smooth, and blends effortlessly. I use the fair to light shade and I consider myself pretty fair. I apply liberally to get the sunscreen benefits, but there is enough product in the bottle to last a long time. At less than $11, it is a great beauty bargain.

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Reviewed by
Cyndawg
12.02.2012
Love it!

Now that my acne scars are fading, this product works so well as a light foundation for every day wear. I have an oily forehead, so I apply Paula's Choice Shine Stopper before putting on the tinted moisturizer. I only need one pump to cover my face and for the price, it works great and lasts several months!

Recommend
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Reviewed by
BRIANNA J.
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