Monday, August 27, 2012

Biore UV Aqua Rich Watery Essence SPF50+ PA+++

Hubby only has 2 requirements for sunscreens. The first and most important is that he will put it on himself if and only if he cannot feel it on himself. Unfortunately, 98% of all the sunscreens out there fail this test (thank you, Nivea Sun Protect Water Gel SPF30 PA++ and Mentholatum Skin Aqua UV Moisture Gel SPF32 PA+++!). The second is that the sunscreen does not require an oil cleanser to be removed, because he will not be bothered to wash his face before getting into the shower, because he is going to wash his face in the shower already. He should, but does not care much for the SPF or the PA ratings and will happily wear the same sunscreen on his face and body. His lucky butt has normal skin, which does not get oily or sweaty. He doesn't sweat much on the body either (double lucky, urgh). 

My requirements for sunscreens are a bit different. On the body, SPF30 is okay since I dress conservatively to begin with. On my face, however, ever since my first venture into Japanese sunscreens, Sofina Perfect UV SPF 50 PA+++ Lucent, I have stopped settling for anything less than SPF50 PA+++ for daily use. With that in mind, I was scheming to get hubby to apply a stronger sunscreen on his face ^.^ It's incredible he is willing to put any sunscreen on himself to begin with (thank you thank you Nivea and Mentholatum!), yet here I was pushing my luck, trying to get him to use not one but two different sunscreens, one for his face and one for his body. Muahaha *evil shifty eyes, hands rubbing together* xD

So I read around on the same website with the awesome lists of best spring and summer sunscreens for 2011 and found this Best Pick post for Biore UV Aqua Rich Watery Essence SPF50+ PA+++. It immediately made its way into my shopping basket as a test-run candidate for hubby's stronger facial sunscreen mission. 

This Biore sunscreen comes out of the tube a gel cream and applies more like a cooling gel. It has strong alcohol smell, but unlike Mentholatum Skin Aqua UV SaraSara Milk SPF50+ PA+++, it does not sting.
It is lightly fragranced with a mild citrus scent that disappears almost immediately and is the fastest drying sunscreen I have ever put on, with complete absorption within 1 minute of skin contact! Holy crap! Its finish is completely transparent and softly matte, in addition to leaving my skin silky soft and velvety. There is no stickiness, no white cast, no sheen, no glow, and no coverage whatsoever. It feels like my naked face after I had just cleansed and prepped with moisturizers and nothing else. Pretty amazing! Sounds like it's ready to go for a hubby trial ^.^

His verdict? "'s silky!" were his exact words. The rest was history and he now dutifully apply this Biore sunscreen to his face and Mentholatum UV Moisture Gel on his neck and arms. Wow. Having made it through the hubby trial, it moved onto the sister trial, who has the same facial/body sunscreen requirements as hubby, only with super sensitive facial skin that will itch and react to the vast majority of skincare products on the market. Going once, going twice, and she LOVES it! Immediately demoting her longtime favorite Nivea Sun Protect Water Gel Cool to just body use, she subsequently requested several tubes of Biore to be lugged home for her. Mission accomplished on my part, and I stocked up for  both hubby and my sister as well. Job well done! *pats self on the shoulder*

With all that said, I find major major faults with this Biore sunscreen (yes, I'm just difficult like that). The first and foremost is that it has zero substantivity. It is not water, sweat, or sebum resistant and does not require an oil cleanser for complete removal. For hubby who has normal skin and my sister who lives in a super dry environment, it stays on well all day and is a godsend. If this sounds like you, I wholeheartedly recommend it for daily use. It is not a heavy duty sunscreen by any means, so it's not meant for the beach or a sporting event either way. On me, however, it started melting around the eye area after a few hours and stung my eyes badly. And this is when I stayed indoor. Indoor, folks!!! The whole time I was testing this stuff for hubby, I didn't dare to wear it out into the hot and humid Japanese summer because I had no doubt it will ruin my day within a couple of hours, if not faster. Even in a drier environment, I would still be reluctant to wear this out because my t-zones aren't seasonally oily but are just oily, period. 

So unfortunately, if you have oily skin or if you live in a very humid area, I would tread very carefully around this one. If you really really love the naked skin feel and must have this sunscreen no matter what, then absolutely avoid the eye area during application. If you were to have a backyard barbecue, I'd say fine, wear this, because if anything happens you can always dash inside and rinse out your eyes. But imagine having a full face of makeup walking around town, and your eyes started stinging and watering nonstop. I would not recommend putting yourself in this situation.


kuri said...

Thanks for the review! I'm super oily in the summer, and my SO and I both sweat quite a lot especially in the summer, so this sunscreen is not going to work for us. Too bad, as the SO hates anything that he can feel, too!

D. said...

Hi kuri,

You're very welcome! Thanks for reading ^.^

Yeah, it's too bad isn't it? It doesn't work for me either and I also sweat buckets in the summer LOL! Oh well, at least it works for hubby and my sister. Haa...


Carrie said...

Thank you for the review. Like your sister, I also have very sensitive skin. I have yet to find a sunscreen that I am not allergic to yet. Would you mind sharing where you found this sunscreen? I often travel to the Bay Area so I am excited about being able to find this product in the Bay (if this is where you bought it). Thanks for sharing.

D. said...

Hi Carrie,

Thank you for reading and commenting.

I have not seen this product sold in the Bay Area, but I might have just missed it out right or I haven't looked hard enough.

Either way, I wouldn't recommend buying it here in the Bay because it'll probably be doubled its Japanese retail (800yen). I get mine from this Ebay seller (not affiliated!!!), and his price includes shipping directly from Japan.

That said, apparently the 2014 version changed a little from the older formulation. You can read about it here.

Hope this helps,

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