04.20.2015
5
1710
Redness Solutions Daily Protective Base SPF 15
Rating
1.35 fl. oz. for $22
Category:Skin Care > Moisturizers (Daytime and Nighttime) > Moisturizer with Sunscreen
Last Updated:04.20.2015
Jar Packaging:No
Tested on animals:Yes
Review Overview

Redness Solutions Daily Protective Base SPF 15 gets the gentle sunscreen right with its pure titanium dioxide and zinc oxide blend. The base formula is similar to that of Clinique’s City Block Sheer Oil-Free Daily Face Protector SPF 25, which is also suitable for someone with sensitive, reddened skin, though SPF 15 is disappointing, as we explain below.

Both products contain some very good water-binding agents, skin-identical substances, and antioxidants. However, it is worth noting that City Block Sheer offers skin a greater complement of beneficial ingredients and, of course, the higher SPF rating.

The only advantage of the Redness Solutions is its sheer green tint (if you consider that a plus). When applied to skin, the green tint becomes a pale flesh tone that provides a bit of coverage. If you have superficial, minor redness, you’ll notice it is less apparent, but that would be true for any tinted moisturizer, too.

Anyone with lingering or persistent redness (such as occurs with rosacea) will want to pair this with a foundation that supplies at least medium coverage. One more thing: The finish of this product is matte, but also somewhat chalky. It can lend a flat appearance to skin that someone not bothered with oiliness may not like.

Note: This product was recently downgraded from our top rating to three stars, which is still considered good. The reason for the change is due to the prevailing recommendation that your daytime sun protection product be rated SPF 30 or greater, with SPF ratings between 25 and 30 falling into the acceptable range. This revised recommendation is due to the fact that most people are not applying sunscreen liberally enough to earn the stated level of protection on the label; therefore, a higher SPF rating will be more advantageous.

Claims

Protects skin from the UVA/UVB exposure that can aggravate skins with redness. No chemical sunscreens. Sheer green tint visually corrects redness.

Ingredients

Active: Titanium Dioxide (6.4%), Zinc Oxide (2%), Other: Water, Trioctyldodecyl Citrate, Cyclopentasiloxane, Butylene Glycol, C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, Steareth-2, Stearyl Dimethicone, Tricaprylyl Citrate, Silica, Barium Sulfate, Lecithin, Sorbitan Tristearate, Aluminum Stearate, Sea Whip Extract, Glyceryl Stearate, Tocopheryl Acetate, PEG-100 Stearate, Sucrose, Pantethine, Caffeine, Octyldodecyl Neopentanoate, Ceteth-2, PEG-40 Stearate, Dimethicone, Cetearyl Alcohol, Glycosaminoglycans, PEG/PPG-18/18 Dimethicone, Steareth-20, Bisabolol, Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate, Polyglyceryl-6 Polyricinoleate, Phytosphingosine, Sodium Stearate, Magnesium Aluminum Silicate, Caprylyl Glycol, Isopropyl Titanium Triisostearate, Stearic Acid, Hexylene Glycol, Xanthan Gum, Citric Acid, Disodium EDTA, BHT, Phenoxyethanol, Iron Oxides, Chromium Hydroxide Green

Brand Overview

Clinique At-A-Glance

Strengths: One of the best selections of state-of-the-art moisturizers and serums loaded with ingredients that research has shown are of great benefit to skin; excellent sunscreens; several Redness Solutions products excel; an outstanding benzoyl peroxide product; good selection of self-tanning products; some very good cleansers and eye makeup removers; some unique mattifying products; a large and wholly impressive selection of foundations, many with reliable sun protection (and shades for darker skin tones); good concealers; some remarkable mascaras; much-improved eyeshadows; loose powder; blush products; some brilliant lipsticks and lip gloss; gel eyeliner; priced lower than most competing department-store lines.

Weaknesses: The three-step skincare routine, because of the bar soaps and irritant-laden clarifying lotions; jar packaging downgrades several otherwise top-notch moisturizers; incomplete routines for those prone to acne; skin-lightening products with either unproven or insufficient levels of lightening agents.

Estee Lauder-owned Clinique's tremendous success (the company's products are sold in over 13,000 department stores and in 110 countries) reshaped the way cosmetics lines identified themselves, sending the concept of line loyalty out to pasture. Today, cosmetics companies expand their market either by buying already established companies or by creating new ones, and Lauder has been adept at doing both. Of course, cosmetics companies keep this multiple-personality identity hidden from the consumer. If the general buying public realized that these apparently different companies were so intertwined with each other, how could they flaunt their independence and claim that their unparalleled formulations are secret or the best? It's hard to think Lauder (or any company) would, even if they could, keep secrets from one branch separate from the others. And as evidenced by the formulary similarities between brands, they don't!

The niche Clinique built launched the concept of cosmetics being "allergy-tested," "hypoallergenic," "100% fragrance-free," and "dermatologist tested." Of those marketing claims the only one with significance is "100% fragrance-free," which, for the most part, Clinique maintains (although it does add some fragrant extracts to a few products). Regarding allergy testing, unless you can see the results, what difference does it make if a product makes that claim? What if the test showed 20% of the women who used it had a sensitizing reaction, dryness, or irritation? Would Clinique highlight this, or is it just easier to default to the generic allergy-tested claim and leave such details out, figuring consumers won't ask for more? 

Moreover, "hypoallergenic" is a term not regulated by the FDA, so any product can use the word without having to substantiate the claim. "Dermatologist tested" is also bogus, because without published test results the term can easily mean nothing more than that a dermatologist picked up the product, looked at the container, and said "This looks good." And what about the dermatologists on Clinique's payroll? How do we know they're not the ones involved in testing, rather than sending the products out for independent, impartial evaluation (though how impartial can any study be that's paid for by the company making the product)?

Clinique declined any participation for this site, which included refusing to send us copies of the allergy studies they maintain have been performed for every product they sell. We find their unwillingness to help odd because, for the most part, we genuinely like most of their products. In fact, more than any other department-store line except Estee Lauder, Clinique is leading the way with cutting-edge, state-of-the-art moisturizers and serums, plus some formidable makeup. They also have their act together for sunscreens and have expanded their decades-old three-step skin-care routine to include water-soluble cleansers instead of bar soap. They also now have a second "Dramatically Different" moisturizer that's well-suited for those with normal to oily skin and FINALLY reformulated their longstanding water-and-wax yellow lotion.

The Clinique consultants, dressed in medical-looking white lab coats (Clinique's image in that sense was ahead of the times given today's plethora of doctor-designed skin-care lines), do their best to speak intelligently about skin-care routines, but for the most part they're trained to sell the products rather than to provide information about what substantiated research has shown about the skin's needs to look and feel its best.

The good news for you is that the chemists behind Clinique's arsenal of products have been keeping up on this exciting information, and formulating superior products in response. We wouldn't blindly and solely bank on Clinique as your skin-care solution, but more than ever what they offer is, despite some far-out claims and problematic products, what epitomizes advanced skin care for all ages. Shop carefully and you'll leave confident that you are purchasing products with solid science, not just marketing hype, behind them.

Turning to makeup, Clinique continues to offer a vast palette of colors and textures, especially in their huge and imposing selection of foundations, many of which feature effective sunscreens. In fact, this category has become the most compelling reason to shop Clinique's makeup collection. Without a doubt the numerous formulas offer something for every skin type and almost every skin color. The shade selection has improved considerably, with more neutrals and a broader range than ever before. You still need to use caution and watch out for peach-toned duds, but for the most part finding a natural-looking match shouldn't be a frustrating experience, and the counter personnel are happy to provide samples.

Although the foundation and powder shades take darker skin tones into account, the blush, eye pencil, and most of the lipstick shades do not. Perhaps that will change in the future, as Clinique beautifully updated their eyeshadow collection with ultra-smooth textures and deeper colors that show up on darker skin.

Compliments are also due for Clinique's updated makeup tester units. They are well-organized, labeled with product name and price, and easily accessible without a salesperson's help. And speaking of salespeople, most of the Clinique consultants we encounter go above and beyond to provide assistance and to answer any questions we had (even if we didn't always agree with their responses). Those white lab coats don't mean medical expertise, but we'll take outstanding customer service over pseudoscience any day!

The bottom line is that, despite a few shortcomings, Clinique is one of the most comprehensive (and comparably affordable) department-store makeup lines, and it is completely understandable why they enjoy such broad appeal.

Note: Clinique is categorized as one that tests on animals because their products are sold in China. Although Clinique does not conduct animal testing for their products sold elsewhere, the Chinese government requires imported cosmetics be tested on animals, so foreign companies retailing there must comply. This requirement is why some brand’s state that they don’t test on animals “unless required by law”. Animal rights organizations consider cosmetic companies retailed in China to be brands that test on animals, and so does the Beautypedia Team.

For more information about Clinique, call (800) 419-4041 or visit www.clinique.com

About the Experts

The Beautypedia Team proudly and unequivocally maintains the commitment that Paula Begoun, founder of Beautypedia and Paula's Choice Skincare made over 30 years ago-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
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08.08.2014
Will not repurchase

I decided to try something new after having used the City Block Sheer SPF25 for years. The colour does not turn from green into a pale flesh tone as the review says, but instead goes on white like any mineral based sunscreen, resulting in a ghastly pale look that I don't really like. In terms of the formula, it's works ok on me as I have normal to oily skin. I can see this working nicely as a primer.

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Reviewed by
SABINA T.
05.23.2014
Great Option for Sensitive Skin

I really like this sunscreen/moisturizer for the daytime. Personally, I like the green tint as it does balance out the pink undertones in my skin. It's not greasy and I have no problem blending it on my skin. I also find this to be very light in texture. I recommend giving this product a try.

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Reviewed by
Joan N.
11.12.2013
Not easy to apply

I bought this product because of the gentle sunscreen it offers and its promise to reduce redness. I find that it's not easy to apply evenly on the skin and it does not double as moisturizer, even though it's in the moisturizers category in Paula's review. Won't buy again.

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Reviewed by
Anonymous
04.06.2013
Pretty much a tube of green tint.

This was recommended to me by the Clinique lady because, to her credit, I was trying to correct my redness in my cheeks without wearing makeup. The red in my cheeks is keratosis pilaris rubra faceii and at first I would apply this over my cheeks specifically, while using moisturizer + SPF over the rest of me. Then I would just cover everything. The green tries to mask the red, and you have to sit there and work it in for a bit, but my cheeks just felt like I'd put a mask on them. Won't buy again

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Reviewed by
Lauren C.
02.26.2013
This is not a moisturizer!

Clinique's Redness Solutions Daily Protective Base SPF 15 is NOT A MOISTURIZER. It is designed to be worn OVER your daily moisturizer as a base to correct redness before applying foundation (or in lieu of foundation, to provide corrective tone and SPF). As a color-correcting base with SPF, it is a fantastic product. Just be aware that it is NOT a stand-alone moisturizer, and as such, it is insufficient by itself. Without moisturizer as well, your skin will feel dry and tight.

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Reviewed by
Julia TC
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