12.03.2014
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Age Shield Face Sunscreen Lotion, SPF 110
Rating
3 fl. oz. for $12.49
Category:Skin Care > Sensitive Skin Products > Sun Products > SPF 50 and Higher Sunscreen
Last Updated:12.03.2014
Jar Packaging:No
Tested on animals:Yes
Review Overview

This sunscreen is at best described as overkill for skin. The combined percentage of synthetic active ingredients (39% in all) increases the chance of skin becoming irritated, which isn’t the goal of using sunscreen. The SPF rating is what pushes this over the top, although it no doubt seems impressive to many consumers; the real story is in the numbers. Consider that someone with fair skin whose skin turns pink after 20 minutes of unprotected sun exposure would be protected from sunburn for 10 hours if they applied a sunscreen rated SPF 30 (30 x 20 = 600 minutes or 10 hours). With SPF 110, the protection would be 110 x 20, or about 36 hours of protection, and there just aren’t that many hours of daylight in any part of the world. As long as you’re applying a sunscreen rated SPF 15 to SPF 45 liberally and reapplying when needed, sunscreens with super-high SPF ratings are unnecessary and potentially irritating, especially if you have sensitive skin. Making matters worse, Neutrogena includes a preservative (methylisothiazolinone) that is contraindicated for use in leave-on products (Sources: Contact Dermatitis, November 2001, pages 257–264; and European Journal of Dermatology, March 1999, pages 144–160).

Claims

UVB rays harm the skin's surface and are the primary cause of sunburn. UVA's more penetrating rays damage collagen and elastin that results in the signs of premature aging: fine lines, wrinkles, sagging, age spots, broken capillaries and uneven tone. Now, Neutrogena brings you superior balanced protection against both types of harmful rays, with a true breakthrough in sunscreen technology. The oil-free lotion with Helioplex works two ways to protect skin: 1) helps screen out UVB burning rays, 2) helps stop UVA skin aging rays from penetrating surface layers for exceptional deep cellular protection. The sheer formula helps combat sun-induced free-radical damage that can accelerate the signs of aging. Skin conditioners hydrate and replenish. The beautiful, lightweight lotion absorbs quickly into skin for a fresh, non-greasy feel. It protects and cares for your skin to help maintain skin's youthful appearance every time you wear it.

Ingredients

Active: Avobenzone (3%), Homosalate (15%), Octisalate (5%), Octocrylene (10%), Oxybenzone (6%), Other: Water, Styrene Acrylamide Copolymer, Silica, Beeswax, Cyclopentasiloxane, Ethylhexylglycerin, Glyceryl Stearate, PEG-100 Stearate, Acrylates/Dimethicone Copolymer, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Chlorphenesin, Triethanolamine, Disodium EDTA, Dipotassium, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, BHT, Methylisothiazolinone, Diethylexyl 2, 6 Naphthalate, Fragrance

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.

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07.27.2013
worth using.

I have dry skin and sensitive skin. This has not irritated my skin at all and does not melt (if u know what I mean). It is a great product.

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tina p
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