03.16.2015
3
68
8 HR Mattifying Moisturizer Sunscreen
Rating
1.69 fl. oz. for $22
Last Updated:03.16.2015
Jar Packaging:No
Tested on animals:Yes
Review Overview

This is a good, lightweight daytime moisturizer with sunscreen. Broad-spectrum protection is provided and the formula includes stabilized avobenzone for reliable UVA (think anti-aging) screening. On the esthetic front this lightweight, silky cream goes on smoothly and sets to a relatively long-lasting powdery matte finish. No, you won't see your oily or shiny areas of combination skin stay matte for eight hours as claimed, but this still has a smooth, light feel that manages to work well under makeup.

This would earn our top rating if the fragrance didn't linger (or, better yet, if it were fragrance-free) and contained a higher amount of skin-defending antioxidants. As is, the mix of antioxidants is likely too low to have much impact, but a tiny amount is better than none at all!

Details on Sephora's called-out "HydroSenn+" complex: Sephora says this ingredient is more hydrating and lasts longer than hyaluronic acid. It's important to realize this product doesn't contain anything called HydroSenn + on the ingredient label so there is no way to know which ingredient or ingredients Sephora is alluding to. There isn't one ingredient in here with research showing it to be more hydrating than any other ingredient in the cosmetic world including hyaluronic acid. Even if we were to suspend conventional wisdom and believe Sephora's claim about HydroSenn + being better than hyaluronic acid, hyaluronic acid is hardly the best ingredient for skin hydration; there are many, many others, and in fact a blend of hydrating ingredients would be best of all, something this product doesn't contain.

Bottom line: This is a worthwhile consideration for those with oily or combination skin, though note that you'll want to prep dry areas of combination skin with a moisturizer first, because this product's powdery finish can be too drying on the dry parts of your face.

Pros:
  • Provides broad-spectrum sun protection.
  • Silky texture applies easily and works well under makeup.
  • Sets to a powder-soft matte finish.
  • Does a good job keeping excess shine in check, but not for eight hours as claimed.
Cons:
  • The fragrance lingers, and fragrance isn't skin care.
  • Would benefit skin further if it contained a higher amount of antioxidants.
Claims

Be fabulously shine-free for up to eight hours with this long-lasting moisturizer. HydroSenn+™, an intensely moisturizing ingredient more effective than hyaluronic acid, forms a protective barrier on the skin’s surface to harness and retain water for optional hydration. This formula also contains UVA/UVB filters and antioxidants to help combat the signs of aging.

Ingredients

Active: Avobenzone 3.00%, Octinoxate 7.50%, Octocrylene 2.37%. Inactive: Water, Dimethicone, Methyl Methacrylate Crosspolymer, Glycerin, Polysorbate 20, Hydroxyethyl Acrylate/Sodium Acryloyldimethyl Taurate Copolymer, Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Sorbitol, Squalane, Butylene Glycol, Panthenol, Polysorbate 60, Pomegranate (Punica Granatum) Extract, Tocopheryl Acetate, Senna (Cassia Angustifolia) Seed Polysaccharide, Enantia Chlorantha Bark Extract, Oleanolic Acid, Caprylyl Glycol, Phenoxyethanol, Fragrance.

Brand Overview

Sephora At-A-Glance

Strengths: Inexpensive; some good cleansers and makeup removers; the Blotting Papers; good powder foundation; impressive blush and shiny eyeshadow options; great metallic finish eyeliner; awesome brow kit; bountiful selection of lipsticks and lip glosses; a couple of very good mascaras; several outstanding makeup brushes;  testers are available in-store for each product, and sales pressure is practically nonexistent.

Weaknesses: Mostly average to below-average toners, moisturizers, and sunscreens; no options for those dealing with acne or skin discolorations; some SPF-rated products (including foundations) lack sufficient UVA-protecting actives; the lip plumper is too irritating; too many disappointing eye-makeup products, including several disappointing eyeliners and brow pencils; unappealing shimmer powders.

Sephora's first foray into skin care was back in 1994, when they offered a colorful, artfully packaged selection of bath gels. Their facial skin-care came on the scene a few years later, but for the most part wasn't worth waiting for. Sephora must not have been too pleased with these earlier versions, because lots of retooling has been done, although, sad to say, that hasn't improved on the ordinary, mundane status their products have consistently shared. Makeup is what Sephora's house brand does best. The only reason to shop this inexpensive skin-care selection is for everyday basics or the occasional impulse buy you may or may not enjoy adding to your routine. Otherwise, most of the skin-care products can't compete with the other brands sold in Sephora boutiques worldwide.

Note: Sephora is categorized as one that tests on animals because their products are sold in China. Although Sephora may 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 Paula’s Choice Research Team.

For more nformation about Sephora, call (877) 737-4672 or visit www.sephora.com.

Sephora Makeup

Once an incomplete line lacking such basics as foundation and concealer, Sephora's color collection has blossomed into a comprehensive group of products, most of which are priced considerably lower than products from the many other lines sold in their boutiques. Although the low price and the selection may draw you in, not everything is worth exploring; for example, some of the products (for example the inexpensive pencils, which are not worth considering) demonstrate the old adage that sometimes you really do get what you pay for. That's not to say you have to spend a lot of money for quality makeup, but it does seem that many of Sephora's potential bargains are below average in terms of performance.

What you really should pay attention to are the pressed-powder foundation, one of the concealers, the powder blush, the liquid shimmer, and a few of the mascaras. Of course, the hallmark of this line has always been an extensive selection of makeup brushes. That still holds true, and you'll find that in this case the prices are more than fair.

More than most other makeup lines, Sephora excels with their accessory offerings. From makeup bags to train cases and on to all manner of beauty tools (from tweezers to nail clippers and manicure aids), the selection means you will assuredly find something that meets your needs. It's easy to get caught up in the variety and scope of Sephora's makeup, and testers are readily available so you can play all you want. That's great, but it doesn’t compensate for a line with more than its share of average to poor products (and they change frequently, often not for the better). However, if you pay attention to the favorably rated products, you're more than likely to be very pleased.

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
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05.21.2015
Not for Me

I find it too drying for my oily/combination skin so I would recommend it for very oily skin only. I also find it hard to spread because it dries too quickly.

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Reviewed by
Julile L
08.12.2014
Best SPF Daily Moisturizer for Oily Skin

Use this as a daily, mattifying moisturizer under my foundation. Great for oily skin! Still have to blot 2 times a day, but complexion is more even, and foundation stays on longer. Great job, Sephora!

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Reviewed by
Carole P
06.03.2014
My go-to

I have extremely oily skin. I honestly don't think I could live without this... it's done a better job keeping my face moisturized and matte than anything else I've tried (Murad Mattifying Moisturizer, Clinique Dramatically Different Gel, Cetaphil Oil Control Moisturizer, ProActiv, etc.)

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S H.
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