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A Review: Mary & May CICA Soothing Sun Cream SPF50+ PA++++ 50ml

K-beauty indie brands have been on the rise since the pandemic started and the k-beauty trend for year 2022 is currently moving towards the direction of eco-conscious skincare by producing clean, plant-based formulation and cruelty-free s products . Mary & May is one of the latest k-beauty indie brands that rose to popularity in year 2021 for being transparent about their formulations with the promise to provide honest clean beauty products to their customers. If you are new to k-beauty or if you are looking for a brand that formulates products with easy-to-understand ingredients, Mary & May is a brand worth checking out.

I’ve been eagerly waiting for the release of this sunscreen since the winter months, when news of a sunscreen was in the works for the year 2022. You can imagine my excitement when I finally received our stock at Oshen Skin. The result? Read on to find out!


What is the CICA Soothing Sun Cream by Mary & May

The Mary & May CICA Soothing Sun Cream is a vegan certified chemical sunscreen that is formulated with 10,000ppm of cica complex, a formula unique to Mary & May. It promises to hydrate, soothe, brighten and prevent wrinkle formation.

What is the F-Cica Complex? It is a formulation composed of seven key compounds extracted from Centella Asiatica which include Centella Asiatica Extract, Centella Asiatica Root Extract, Centella Asiatica Leaf Extract, Asiaticoside, Madecassoside, Madecassic Acid and Asiatic Acid, plus fermented yeast. Centella Asiatica. Centella Asiatica, or more commonly known as Cica in the skincare world, is a perennial plant that has been used for generations in the orient for culinary purposes and in traditional medicine for its anti-inflammatory properties and wound healing abilities. If you suffer from skin sensitivity or acne-related issues, Centella Asiatica might just be your skincare BFF ingredient. This complex also helps give your skin an extra boost with fermented yeast to help maintain your skin’s microbiome for healthy looking skin.


Mary & May CICA Soothing Sun Cream SPF50+ PA++++ 50ml Texture shot
Click on image to check out the texture



This Mary & May sunscreen comes in a tube of 50ml housed in an eco-friendly 100% recyclable box packaging. The twist cap is easy to maneuver and the slim nozzle makes the effort to squeeze out the cream minimal and without much fuss. I love how the tube is flat, light and small enough to fit just about any carrier as compared to other bulkier and heavier sunscreens such as the 5A Control No-Sebum Sun Lotion.


Texture and Scent

This cica soothing sunscreen has a lightweight and creamy texture that glides on smoothly onto the skin. I personally like that it absorbs fairly quickly and has a hydrating finish at the end of the application when fully absorbed. The cream does settle nicely into the skin without leaving a greasy trail. Unfortunately, this sunscreen does have a fragrance in its formulation reminds me of the scent from bar soaps and the scent is noticeable upon application. However, it does dissipate over a fairly short period of time, which is not a deal-breaker for me.





The application of the sunscreen on the skin feels similar to applying a light-weight, hydrating moisturizer, except you get the extra benefit of UV protection. I personally like how smooth it feels on the skin, not too rich or greasy. Although it does leave a very subtle white on the skin after application due to the hybrid Tinosorb M, it is almost unnoticeable. I do have dry skin and I find that by applying a layer of moisturizer before the sunscreen helps create a more dewy base and retain the moisture for a longer period of time when using this sunscreen. This is not a waterproof sunscreen and requires more frequent application especially when you are exposed to water.



Ingredient List:

Water, Dibutyl Adipate, Propanediol, Diethylamino Hydroxybenzoyl Hexyl Benzoate, Polymethylsilsesquioxane, Ethylhexyl Triazone, Niacinamide, Methylene Bis-Benzotriazolyl Tetramethylbutylphenol, Coco-Caprylate Caprate, Butylene Glycol, Caprylyl Methicone, Diethylhexyl Butamido Triazone, Glycerin, 1,2-Hexanediol, Pentylene Glycol, Behenyl Alcohol, Poly C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate, Polyglyceryl-3 Methylglucose Distearate, Decyl Glucoside, Tromethamine, Fragrance, Carbomer, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Sodium Stearoyl Glutamate, Polyacrylate Crosspolymer-6, Ethylhexylglycerin, Adenosine, Xanthan Gum, Centella Asiatica Root Extract, Centella Asiatica Leaf Extract, Centella Asiatica Extract, Saccharomyces Ferment, T-Butyl Alcohol, Tocopherol, Asiaticoside, Madecassoside, Betaine, Inositol, Madecassic Acid, Sodium Hyaluronate, Asiatic Acid


This is a chemical sunscreen that contains organic filters and a hybrid filter for both UVA and UVB to provide a broad spectrum UV coverage for the skin. The organic filters in the formulation include Diethylamino Hydroxybenzoyl Hexyl Benzoate, Ethylhexyl Triazone, Methylene Bis-Benzotriazolyl Tetramethylbutylphenol and Diethylhexyl Butamido Triazone. According to the official report from Kolmar Korea, the results of the SPF and PA testing have yielded a mean of SPF54.1 and PFA17.61 PA++++.

What I find unique about this sunscreen formulation is the inclusion of Sacchromyces Ferment, a type of fermented yeast to help hydrate and balance the skin’s microbiome. Fermented skincare is a highly sought after trend in k-beauty 2022 and while I don’t think the fermented ingredient (probiotics) in sunscreen can cause an extensive change to the skin as it would if it was in a form of a treatment serum or ampoule, there may still be some indirect photoprotective effects on the skin.


Final Thoughts

My experience on the whole with this product was positive, with one exception which is the use of fragrance in the formulation, which although light and dissipates, may not be suitable for everyone, depending on your personal preference. Although this sunscreen does contain alcohol in its formulation, it is a fatty alcohol, Behenyl Alcohol that acts as an emulsifier, which, unlike the alcohol denats, does not dry out the skin and is less likely to cause irritation. From a price point perspective, the price of this sunscreen is affordable and falls within the mid-range price similar to Dr.Ceuracle Cica Regen Vegan Sun, which by the way is a good alternative if you are looking for a cica based sunscreen. Although scented, the source of the scent is from the natural fragrance of Rosemary oil rather than synthetic fragrance, which may or may not work for everyone.

Lastly, from my personal perspective, I would highly recommend this Cica Soothing Sun Cream to those with oily and sensitive skin or those with combination skin.

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