I’m being rather slow on the whole review thing, aren’t I? In truth, I have made extensive notes on many products, including dozens of sunscreens, but my written reviews are, for some reason, slow to materialise. Perhaps it’s because I find writing them a little tedious and daunting.
But I shall bite the bullet and get on with it, because the new Athlizm sunscreen line from Biore UV has been getting a lot of press in Japan and is a nice affordable option for those feeling hot, so to speak. As it’s still late spring, there’re a couple of months to go before the onslaught of heatwaves.
Athlizm is formulated for athletic needs. Its press blurb says the line uses new proprietary technologies to protect the skin from the sun even under extreme conditions. It boasts to adhere uniformly like a second layer of skin and stay put under extreme heat and humidity, even when exposed to perspiration and normal friction.
Biore UV Athlizm Skin Protect Essence is a lightweight, completely invisible sunscreen that feels refreshing to apply but doesn’t leave skin tight or dry. It is completely non-greasy and free from any sort of chalky, residue even (dare I say) on the darkest skin. A warning for those with dry or sensitive skin: this does sting if it gets close to the eyes! Oily or combination skins beware — this offers no oil-control and there is a definite glow to the finish. My skin isn’t oily but I still have to use a powder on my T-zone. Just a warning.
Compared to the famous (and newly reformulated) Aqua Rich Watery Essence, I think this takes a little longer to sink in and looks a smidge shinier, but it is also more tenacious. I did a test wearing Aqua Rich on one side and Athlizm on the other half while running errands around the city on a warm day (26°C). Athlizm’s protective film was still there towards the evening — water continued to bead up on the skin. Water on the Aqua Rich side, however, no longer did. Although therein lies the rub: I still wouldn’t rely on it for prolonged periods outdoors. I am singularly unathletic, but my go-to is always a sunscreen milk (AKA fluid) if I’m outside more and going to be exposed to strong sun.
If you’re after broad-spectrum protection from incidental exposure to the summer sun that won’t melt off, this one’s a good one. With that being said, the Athlizm Skin Protect Essence is specially formulated for sports and the great outdoors, but I can’t wholeheartedly recommend it for such purpose.
Biore UV Athlizm Skin Protect Essence SPF50+ PA++++ is readily available in drugstores in Japan. RRP is ¥1,500 for 70g and it’s always on sale. Outside of Japan, you can find it online at YesStyle and eBay for about US$19.50.
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