Paula's Choice - Ultra-Sheer Daily Defense SPF 15

Paula's Choice Ultra-Sheer Daily Defense SPF 15

SPF 15
WORKS FOR
  • Anti-oxidation
  • Moisturizing
  • Anti-aging
  • Sun protection
  • Evens skin tone
  • +2 more
KEY INGREDIENTS
  • adenosine
  • colloidal oatmeal
  • panthenol
  • benzophenone-3
  • bisabolol
  • butyl methoxydibenzoylmethane
  • camellia sinensis leaf extract
  • cetyl dimethicone
  • ginkgo biloba leaf extract
  • homosalate
  • octocrylene
  • phospholipids
  • silica
  • superoxide dismutase
  • titanium dioxide
  • tocopherol
  • +13 more
PROMISES
FULFILLED
58 /100
IRRITANCY
MEDIUM
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Formula review

WIMJ summary

This product offers broad spectrum sun protection, but it is weak. We recommend to use a broad spectrum sunscreen with at least SPF 30.

This product can be considered "reef safe" because it does not contain the UV filters (oxybenzone and octinoxate) that can be harmful to coral reefs when present in the water in high concentrations.

Organic filters
Ingredient UVB UVA I UVA II Stability
butyl methoxydibenzoylmethane
cross
Offers UVA I protection
Offers UVA II protection
Is photo stable
octocrylene
Offers UVB protection
Does not offer UVA I protection
Does not offer UVA II protection
Is photo stable
homosalate
Offers UVB protection
Does not offer UVA I protection
Does not offer UVA II protection
Is photo stable
benzophenone-3
Offers UVB protection
Does not offer UVA I protection
Offers UVA II protection
Is photo stable
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Promise
What does the product description say?
"It is the perfect option to help prevent premature ageing of skin."
WIMJ summary

This product contains adenosine. This ingredient might be able to help reduce and prevent fine lines and wrinkles, improve skin elasticity and firmness, but there is not enough evidence that it actually works. The biggest anti-aging effect in this product comes from sun protection. Sun damage is the main factor causing early signs of skin aging. We, however, do not recommend using this product as a sunscreen because the protection it offers is not strong enough).

Ingredient Effectiveness Concentration Irritancy
MEDIUM
meets threshold
LOW
meets threshold
LOW
does not meet threshold
See a mistake?
Promise
What does the product description say?
"SKIN BALANCING Ultra-Sheer Daily Defense SPF 15 feels wonderfully light, but its broad-spectrum, oil-absorbing formula gives skin a nourishing supply of antioxidants to diminish the appearance of wrinkles and uneven skin tone and to smooth away dryness for younger-looking skin!"
WIMJ summary

This product contains ingredients () that could help reduce hyperpigmentation (for example, post-acne marks or age spots) in theory, but there is not enough evidence that they actually work.

The biggest effect for evening out skin tone in this product comes from sun protection. Sun damage is the main factor causing age spots, darkening of post-acne marks and other discolorations. This is why sun protection is the best strategy for maintaining an even skin tone. We, however, do not recommend using this product as a sunscreen because the protection it offers is not strong enough).

Ingredient Effectiveness Concentration Irritancy
LOW
meets threshold
See a mistake?
WIMJ summary

This product can help improve hydration of the skin with the two types of ingredients.

The first type is called “humectants”:
these ingredients help attract water. When humectants are on the surface of the skin, they “pull in” the moisture from the outside environment, or from within deeper layers of the skin. The following ingredients in this product do the job: panthenol, butylene glycol.

This product also contains ingredients called “occlusives”. They help reduce the speed with which our skin loses moisture to the outside environment. These ingredients also help soften the upper layer of the skin, so it feels less tight and nicer to the touch. The following ingredients in this product do the job: cetyl dimethicone.

The following ingredients in this product are especially good for supporting the skin barrier and helping with the hydration level: colloidal oatmeal, panthenol

Ingredient Effectiveness Concentration Irritancy
HIGH
meets threshold
HIGH
meets threshold
HIGH
meets threshold
See a mistake?
WIMJ summary

This product contains antioxidants (superoxide dismutase) that can help neutralize free radicals in skin. By doing so, they can lessen the damage the skin gets from the UV light (sun).

The following ingredients - camellia sinensis leaf extract, ginkgo biloba leaf extract also can have an antioxidant effect, but there is less evidence to confirm their effectiveness in skin.

Ingredient Effectiveness Concentration Irritancy
HIGH
meets threshold
MEDIUM
meets threshold
MEDIUM
meets threshold

Potential irritants

IRRITANCY
MEDIUM

Ingredients by volume

Ingredient Estimated concentration
TBC
Avobenzone. An organic, or so-called "chemical" UV filter. Protects against both UVA and UVB rays. Needs to be combined with other filters in a formulation to be stable.
TBC
A weak sunscreen that offers some protection against the sun rays that cause sunburn (UVB), but does not offer meaningful protection against protect against the most aging sun rays (UVA). It loses its effectiveness quickly when exposed to sunlight. It is an organic, or so called "chemical" sunscreen. When used in low concentrations, helps to stabilize the product formulation
TBC
A weak sunscreen that protects against the sun rays that cause sunburn (UVB) and is somewhat effective against the UVA rays. It is quite stable and can help stabilize other, more vulnerable, sunscreen ingredients like Avobenzone. It is an organic, or so called "chemical" sunscreen
TBC
Same as oxybenzone. Protects in the UVB and short UVA range. In small concentrations, used to stabilize product formulation. Can be irritating. Is shown to be harmful to coral reefs - consider avoiding bathing in coral reef areas when wearing a product with this ingredient. It can penetrate the skin and get absorbed into bloodstream faster than other popular filters available in the US. The study that produced this finding did not address any potential health effects of the absorption
TBC
TBC
Plain old water
TBC
Used to create a nice product texture and help delivery of other ingredients. Might be somewhat helpful in attracting water to the upper layer of the skin
TBC
Used to absorb oil and can temporarily mattify skin
TBC
Used to thicken the product's consistency
TBC
A type of silicone. Helps soften the upper layer of the skin and creates a nice, light product texture
TBC
Can contain potent anti-oxidant compounds (abbreviated ECG, GCG, EGC, and EGCG) that might help protect the skin from free radicals. Can help calm down inflammation and has some anti-bacterial properties. Unfortunately, these antioxidants are unstable and lose their effectiveness very quickly in products. The concentration of the antioxidant compounds in the extract also tends to be low to be effective in topical formulation
TBC
Traditionally used to treat sunburns, dermatitis and inflammation, but evidence for its effectiveness is lacking. The extract can contain humectants that help attract water into the skin
TBC
Being a lipid soluble form of vitamin C, it is more stable and can penetrate the skin better than L-Ascorbic acid. It is effective in protecting the skin from free radicals, as well as evening the skin tone, but is less effective in stimulating collagen production compared to L-Ascorbic acid.
TBC
Emollients that are naturaly present in skin. In addition, they help water and oil mix together in the product
TBC
An antioxidant enzyme that is naturally present in skin. It can help support skin barrier function and reduce inflammation in skin. It is used in topical medications for inflammatory skin conditions including atopic dermatitis (eczema) and psoriasis. There are three types of natural Superoxide Dismutase in human skin. The compound used in topical treatments and cosmetics are mimics of typically one of these natural variants
TBC
Might help improve cell turnover and reduce inflammation in skin. One study shows that the ingredients might be able to stimulate collagen production in skin
TBC
Pure form of vitamin E. Can help moisturise and protect the skin from free radicals. Often used to help stabilise other ingredients or the formula itself
TBC
An active component of chamomile plant that historically has been used to calm down irritated skin. A recent study shows that bisabolol indeed can have some anti-inflammatory effect on skin, even though conclusive data is lacking. Bisabolol has a sweet floral scent and can be added to products for its aromatic properties
TBC
A plant extract that might help reduce inflammation and neutralize free radicals
TBC
Helps to restore skin barrier function, soften the upper layer of the skin and calm down inflammation
TBC
Helps attract water to the upper layer of the skin and can help improve skin barrier function
TBC
A plant extract that might help neutralize free radicals and reduce inflammation in skin. It can be irritating
TBC
A plant extract that can help neutralize free radicals in skin. It contains a compound salicin that can theoretically be converted into salicylic acid that, in turn, helps reduce inflammation in skin, but the evidence of effectiveness in skin is lacking and the extract is usually not used in a concentration that would enable an exfoliating effect
TBC
Maintains the texture of skincare products. Allows the product to spread evenly. Helps oil and water mix together
TBC
Works as a UV filter when used in high concentrations. It is photostable and is effective mostly against the UVB light, with some protection in the UVA range. In small concentrations, used for its ability to improve the color of cosmetic products. Is usually well tolerated by the skin
TBC
Used to adjust the product's pH
TBC
Helps oil and water mix together
TBC
Helps oil and water mix together
TBC
Helps oil and water mix together
TBC
Stabilizes the product formulation
TBC
A preservative. It helps prevent bacterial growth in cosmetic products
TBC
A preservative
TBC

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