I always wear a sunscreen daily on my face as the sun is so damaging for the skin and ages it so badly. My favourite sun product for my face has got to be Clinique Super City Block as it not only offers good broad spectrum sun protection but it also feels lovely on my skin too. The city block comes in a sheer lightweight formula that isn''t greasy and it doesn''t feel heavy on my skin. It is oil free too so it doesn''t make me break out either. The block is slightly tinted so that you can easily see where you have put it and although it is supposed to be completely sheer it does offer a little bit of light coverage too. This absorbs in to my skin really nicely and I am not left with any sort of greasy film on my skin though it does leave it with a really nice silky feeling. You apply the block to your face just using your fingers and then blend in to your skin. You can follow this up with your usual make-up. As well as offering sun protection this also makes a really good primer for make-up and helps set it and keep it in place for longer even on hot days. As often as not though I wear this alone without any foundation on and I like the look it gives my skin as it gives it a slight healthy glow without being too dark or obvious that I am wearing make-up. It also doesn''t give that dreaded white chalky look that so many sun screens can give you. It isn''t a cheap product as it costs 18 GBP but the small tube seems to last for an eternity even when using it every single day. You can get this in either a 40 SPF or a 25. I usually go for the spf 25 as this seems enough for my skin but I would use the 40 if I was going somewhere really hot. This is one of the best daily sun screens that you can buy and is made even better by the fact that not only does it protect you from the sun but it also improves the look of your skin as well as making a fantastic make-up primer on its own.
I saw the City Block Sheer by Clinique being advertised in a magazine as one of the most useful sunscreens. It appeared there because, as well as being a Sunscreen with SPF 25 for the face, it promises to absorb excess oils produced by the skin as well as keeping perspiration at bay.
And in addition to all this, it also claims to be a primer which will allow your make up to last longer and look better in hot and humid weather. As I have both fair and oily skin, this product sounded like it was right up my street. It is suitable for use on all skin types.
How does it work?
This product is designed to be a physical sunscreen which means that it forms an actual shield on the skin to protect the face from damaging UVA and UVB rays, rather than the chemical forms which are actually absorbed by the skin.
The two ingredients which give protection from the sun are Zinc Oxide and Titanium Dioxide. The Zinc Oxide is one of the safest and best ingredients that can be used to protect us from all three types of the harmful rays of the sunshine.
As well as protecting us from the sun, the Zinc also helps to fight acne and as it is an astringent, it also tightens the pores meaning our skin will become less oily. The Titanium Dioxide also filters out the damaging rays and gives us a good level of protection when we are out in the sunshine.
The product also contains Bisabilol, an extract of the Chamomile plant, which prevents the skin from becoming irritated and inflamed, while providing a soothing action. Rosemary helps to tone the skin and gives it a layer of moisture while Barley allows our skin to maintain its elasticity which prevents wrinkles from forming.
Cucumber is present is order to cool and soothe the skin while Sunflower extract nourishes and moisturises the skin. Also included is a whole host of antioxidants and vitamins which fight against the free radicals which the sun has left lurking in our skin and that would have otherwise caused premature aging.
How do you use the product?
The product is to be applied to dry and clean skin that has already been moisturised. You need to give this product a good shake before use as some of the ingredients seem to separate within the tube.
After squeezing a small amount of the product out of the tube, it needs to be smoothed onto the face and blended in quickly. It is suitable to be worn alone or it can be worn underneath your make up in order to give you a smoother surface to work with.
Packaging and Price
The product comes contained within a minty green plastic tube with a metallic shiny silver screw top lid. There is some white writing on the front. It will cost you around £15 for 40ml of the product which makes this a fairly pricey product. It can be purchased from large department stores such as Boots and also from many online websites so if you shop around, you may find it for a little bit cheaper.
Problems with application
I would say the biggest problem with this product is learning how to apply it and it can be a nightmare to use in the beginning. When I have applied it in a rush before, after using moisturiser and with my skin slightly damp, this product balls up on my skin. This means that the product has to be applied to completely dry skin and likewise, you need to wait for this product to dry completely before you apply make up on top.
The other problem is that the ingredients seem to separate within the tube. For the initial few applications the cream is thick but with time, it then goes liquid like. To rectify this you need to shake the tube vigorously and then squeeze some onto the back of your hand and mix the ingredients together there before applying it.
The product must be applied quickly to prevent it from streaking and it must be smoothed on swiftly and not rubbed into the skin, otherwise it will ball up. You'll find you soon get the hang of doing all this but it is a pain!
This product is free from oil, chemical sunscreens and artificial fragrances which means that it is gentle on my sensitive skin. It has also never caused any new spots or blackheads to form. It doesn't sting or irritate my face and it is also suitable for use on the delicate skin around the eye area.
The formula has a slight tint to it that makes the cream a beige colour. If your skin is in pretty good condition this product could be used alone as a light foundation but the coverage is not good enough in order for me to do this with my skin. Despite there being just the one colour, it is sheer enough to be acceptable for use on many different skins but on darker skins, the solution may be too pale.
It does a good job as a primer and fills in all my pores and fine lines, leaving me with a flat surface on which to apply my make up and it keeps my make up looking fresher for longer. It does seem to keep my skin matte for longer and absorbs some perspiration.
Despite the fact that the product is oil free, it still feels great greasy on the skin, even though it doesn't look greasy and it can feel a little uncomfortable. It does feel like I'm wearing a normal sunscreen on my face, which I know I am, but I was expecting the feeling of a normal primer. It is quite a thick cream and it can feel quite heavy on the face when used in addition to my moisturiser and make up.
The sun protection quality is fantastic and I have never burnt my face while wearing this and I normally always burn my nose but this prevents that from happening. I felt confident when wearing it that I was protected and I didn't feel the need to reapply the product. My skin didn't feel tight or uncomfortable when I came out of the sun.
All in all, this product has been fairly useful because it combines a primer and a sunscreen which means you don't need to buy and apply two separate products. It does protect my skin from the skin and it works well as a primer and keeps my skin matte for longer than usual.
That said, it is a complete pain to apply and it doesn't feel entirely comfortable on my face. The 40ml is also used up pretty quickly which makes this an extremely pricey product. I have been happy with the results of this product and it lives up to all of its promises but the fact that it is a nuisance to use means that I won't be repurchasing.
One of my daily essentials is a good sunscreen. I like the Dermalogica one that you can add to your moisturiser to give you a daily defence but most of the time I rely on Clinique city block as it is a tried and tested favourite.
As I have Roseacea and the sun aggrivates the condition I find that city block because it is slightly tinted not only protects me against the sun but it also gives my skin a little bit of camoflage against any redness.
It costs £15.50 for a 40ml tube but a tube of city block will last me for months so it is worth the money.
Inside the tube is the cream which as mentioned earlier is slightly tinted. The colour of the tint looks much darker than it actually goes on the face and instead of giving me something which is like a foundation or even a tinted moisturiser it only gives me a subtle hint of coverage. Because of this if my skin is having a break out i need to still use foundation and concealer.
The cream is quite thick and it feels like I need to rub it in really hard for it to be completely absorbed. However once I have rubbed it in it feels really lightweight and I don't feel like that I am wearing anything heavy on my skin.
Because it contains little particals of sunscreen these sit on the top layer of the skin. Again I don't feel like there is anything there but I do notice them glistening in the sun but it doesn't leave my skin greasy or shiny in the conventional sense.
It is SPF25 and I can honestly say that I have never gotten burnt while wearing it. I wouldn't recommend sitting out in direct sun while wearing it but it is fine for all day protection when only out in the sun for short periods of time.
City block has become one of my daily essentials and it is something that I use most days and although I have tried other daily sun protectors this one still remains the best.
I tend to use the Clinique anti-blemish range, however before using Clinique I used to use always have SPF 15+ in either my moisturizer, foundation, or often both. I didn't initially realize that Clinique's anti blemish moisturizer and foundation which I was using do not contain SPF, and quickly developed a bit of a tan on my face. Whilst this looked quite healthy I was keen to protect my skin from the sun so I bought the Clinique city block (SPF 25). This comes out the tube looking like a very pale tinted moisturizer, however the colour seems to fade away as you apply it. It also looks a little lumpy when it comes out the tube (don't know if this is always the case or just the case with mine!), but this too disappears as it is applied. As I applied it I thought it was going to look at bit greasy, but once rubbed in it looked and felt nice. I do like this and it is comfortable to apply and wear and not as thick as many SPF moisturizers, but I don't feel that it has protected my skin from the sun as much as those thicker SPF moisturizers I have used before. I seemed to keep my tan suggesting to me that I was getting some top up through my city block. I therefore went on to but the SPF 40 city block, so can report how I find that once we have had some summer!
I have really sensitive skin and summer is usually a nightmare for me because as soon as i go out in the sun my face reacts and becomes red and sensitive. This is obviously a problem for me as everyone else is out enjoying the sun i have to stay behind or stay in the shade.
The only product i have found that my skin tolerates daily is Clinique city block sheer which a dermatologist recommended to me to wear daily summer and winter. I've now been using it for a few months and i am impressed with how it has helped my skin. My skin is now no longer as reactive as it used to be. Before i would only have to step out in strong daylight for my face to go red and start itching but with the city block on i can tolerate the sun for a lot longer.
If im going to be out in the sun for a long period of time and it is hot then i still have to wear a sunscreen as although it protects me for the entire day when im only in and out of the sun i don't feel it gives me enough protection for direct sunlight for hours but it makes the perfect base for sunscreen and i always feel much more secure knowing i have the city block on underneath.
The city block comes in a green 40 ml tube that is perfect for carrying around with you so you can top up whenever and is spf 25 so quite a high protection. The cream itself has a slight tint which worried me as i didn't want to look like i was wearing makeup but goes on clear and actually helps cover some of the redness without it looking like makeup of any kind. It says on the instructions it also helps absorb oil and perspiration from your skin but im not so sure about this.
It also contains anti oxidents and helps block pollution from your skin so it can be used in place of a moisturiser but i think anyone who has even slightly dry skin will still need a moisturiser as it doesn't really moisturise all that great.
The tube itself is quite small but i was amazed that even with using it everyday a tube lasts me about 3 months so for around £14 it works out really reasonable and i would definitely recommend it to anyone looking for a daily sunscreen.
I bought this at a "Clinique beauty evening" at Harvey Nichols. Yup the ones where they invite you along to meet a famous make up artist. They give you lots of free champagne, and a bit of food - do you up in lots of make up and give you a goody bag. BUT after the free champagne they suggest that you buy lots of products that they have used on you. It is very sneaky but I have to say that it worked with me!
So I purchased this product at a cost of £15 which is not too bad for a large tube.
What is it?
Well it is a sunscreen for your skin, but also a protector from both sunlight and pollution. The make up artist said to me that it can protect from the grime of the London Underground , car pollution and general exposure to the sun. At £15 a tube this seems like a lot of moneyfor what is basically a sunscreen BUT this is also a primer or base for your make up. You can put it on after moisturiser and then add make up on top - stops you needing foundation if you have nice skin.
Is the company any good?
Clinique are one of my favourite brands - they don't test on animals and their products - while not cheap are significantly cheaper than Dior / Estee Lauder. THey are also made of natural ingrediants so should not irritate your skin.
The product comes in a tube with a metal lid - unfortunately not recyclable which is a bit of a shame. There is no excess packaging though and the lid is secure so you won't lose any product to spills.
There is no smell to this product which is just as well.
This comes out of the tube a light beige colour but on your skin it just gives a slight glow and evening out of your complexion. It looks great on my skin - reducing dark circles slightly and making my skin look very dewy.
How to use?
After cleansing and moisturising you need to put a tiny covering of this on your face and neck - rub in. It should not look like you are wearing too much make up as it appears almost transparent on your skin. It will, however make your skin look even in tone and will reduce dark circles (although, if like me you have a young baby you will still need concealer!) It will also give your skin a lovely dewy glow. It does not make it greasy (well it didnt with me!)
Then just add make up to the top and away you go.
What do I think?
Well the sun protection seems to work - I have not burnt while wearing this and I burn in 5 minutes in strong sun so am probably a good guinea pig. Whether it really protects against pollution I could not say for sure BUT my skin does get less grimy when wearing this, especially when I am in central London so I think that it does work.
It rubs into your skin really easily too and does not leave my skin greasy so I love it!
It is a great base for make up and really does make my skin look nice and smooth, lines are reduced and I just look more polished.
At £15 it is not cheap but one tube really does last ages as you only use a tiny bit. If you look on www.cheapsmells.com or www.fragrancedirect.com they often have this much cheaper. Or you could just try to buy it when there is a "Clinique Bonus Time" promotion on and then you get lots of freebies. Especially if it is a Boots one as you get Boots points too.
Overall I love this product and would highly recommend it - one star knocked off for price though!
Wonderful and great value for money
I had never used Clinique products until recently and was extremely impressed by this. Any other facial sunscreen I have used has left my face looking greasy and I have ended up with breakouts as my skin is quite sensitive.
Once you apply the product, whether under makeup or not, you really can't tell it's there. There is no smell and no heaviness. I am now on my 2nd tube as I have been using it every day for months now and the most recent tube I bought has an SPF of 40 rather then 25. I was a bit worried it would feel different because of that, but no.
The tube does last a long time, I have been using it on my neck and chest area as well.
I have no criticisms to make, five stars all round!
Retailing at around £11-£13 it is really good value for money and something worth investing in to protect our lovely skin!!
I bought this on the back of the reviews I read on here for the SPF15 city block and I'm really pleased with it.
I work in the city and spend hours stuck on trains and lately my skin has been suffering big time, I've been avoiding make-up where I can because I wanted to give my skin a detox after the xmas period of night after night of war paint, late nights and bad diet.
So far its brilliant, I did want the SPF15 but I have been told that Clinique don't make it anymore which is a shame but I get extra protection against the sun isn't bad.
It comes in a green tube and a little seems to be going a long way, it only has one shade, so If you are tanned or dark skinned i'm not sure whether it would be more noticable. It rubs in like a moisturiser and is not oily at all which i love as i have combination skin, it leaves your skin looking smooth and with no shinny patches. At the end of the day I just remove it with cleanser and toner and in about a week I noticed a difference, my skin seems a lot clearer.
Its fab for during day on its own as it isn't heavy but leaves your skin looking "finished" and its great for underneath night make up for making it stick and it probably acting as a barrier for the make up not to block my pores.
I would definitely recommend I bought mine in boots for £12.23 (plus you get advantage points!). I have noticed if you get it direct from the Clinique site they are doing an offer at the moment where you can get 2 samples of any of their other products and its the same price
~ Useful Info ~
The product comes in tubes of 40ml, its claims not to be tested on animals, and 100% frangrance free, although it does have a "make up/chemical" smell but nothing you'd notice
Forget all the anti-aging face creams, this beats them all! Because it is slightly tinted it leaves your face feeling fresh and dewy all day and protects it from the sun! I work outside in all weathers and get chapped red and sore skin, I never thought of this because it said city block and I work in the middle of nowhere that never sees the sun! I put it on every morning, and with a flick of mascara and a dab of vaseline I cant go wrong!