Best Sunscreen Reviews – 5 Top Picks

27 Jun

Summer has once again blessed our skin with its radiant presence. From beaches to mountains to time at the park, many of us spend more time outdoors during the long warm summer days. With increased exposure to UVA (age rays) and UVB (burn rays) it’s critical that we protect our skin from the suns harmful rays. More than ever before, we have options ranging from physical to chemical protectants. Since finding the right sunscreen can be such a challenge, I thought that I would share my experience with some wonderful products. Here are some of my favorites selected randomly from products that I’ve used most recently. If you want information about other products, leave a comment and I’ll respond with any information that I may have!

La Roche Posay Anthelios Mineral Ultra Light Sunscreen Fluid SPF 50 (about $31.95). 100% mineral protection. This product is remarkable, when you first place it on your fingers you may find yourself questioning if it is really a sunscreen because it is so light and fluid. The formulation is truly non-whitening and its lightweight perfection, seriously you don’t feel like you’ve just applied a sunscreen, it feels more like a very light treatment product. Some noteworthy benefits are its Titanium Dioxide broad spectrum protection and the Cell-Ox Shield which is a powerful antioxidant formula featuring Senna Alata extract, a medicinal plant that has healing properties. Other benefits include its photo-stability, a matte finish that doesn’t leave you shiny, and the fact that it is free of parabens, PABA, and fragrance. The biggest selling points for me is that it’s super lightweight and feels like nothing is applied to the skin once dry. This product is great for outdoor activities or prolonged sun exposure.

NIA24 Sun Damage Prevention Mineral Sunscreen SPF 30 (about $45.00). Recommended by the Skin Cancer Foundation this product offers 100% mineral protection. Though it does go on white, it absorbs quickly and leaves a silky feeling versus the normal gooey feeling felt with other sunscreens. The result when applied and absorbed is more like a makeup primer, when make-up or tinted moisturizer is applied over it, the application is smoother than normal and leaves your skin looking like it has a healthy brightness to it. That said, this sunscreen can be felt little more under makeup but only if you touch your skin, it’s not heavy at all, it just feels like a primer. The formulation on this one includes broad spectrum physical protection using micronized Titanium Dioxide (9.45%)  and Zinc Oxide (3.6%). It also includes vitamin E and the Pro-Niacin (5%) patented molecule that is designed to deliver Niacin into the skin. Niacin helps improve the appearance of sun damage and hyperpigmentation, with that in mind, I think of this product like a sunscreen, moisturizer, and treatment all in one. There is a whole other science behind the Pro-Niacin so I highly recommend researching that ingredient to discover the benefits of it. One con to this product is that some folks are sensitive to Niacin and it can cause redness if you are sensitive to that ingredient specifically, otherwise its good for all skin types. This product is great for outdoor activities or slightly longer sun exposure.

Colorescience Sunforgettable SPF30 Brush Perfectly Clear (about $50.00) Recommended by the Skin Cancer Foundation this product offers broad spectrum mineral protection. This product is a great alternative to a cream or lotion. This unique product is a mineral powder SPF that is contained within its own brush application system thus it is a highly convenient SPF solution that is safe for the entire family, it travels very well in your purse with no worries of leakage. This product is also water-resistant and uses the Zinc Oxide and Titanium Dioxide as a physical sun barrier that won’t absorb into the skin. The biggest selling points for me are that it’s a powder, it lasts a long time, and is super convenient. It does feel a little grainy to me, but I’m not generally into powder so that is likely a personal bias matter.

BareMinerals SPF 30 Natural Sunscreen (about $28.00).  Another product recommended by the Skin Cancer Foundation. Winner of a 2010 CEW Beauty Award, this SPF is a mineral powder that is preservative free and offers broad spectrum protection using Micronized Titanium Dioxide. It also has Aloe Vera Extract and Vitamins A,C, and E which are your core antioxidants essential to healthy skin. This product is a great alternative to the Colorescience Sunforgettable SPF30 if you are looking for a lower price point. It also didn’t feel as grainy to me.

Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare All In One Tinted Moisturizer SPF15 ($44.00). LOVE! This is a favorite of mine. The smooth texture and moderate coverage makes this the perfect all in one product. No make-up application required and the SPF protection is perfect for daily use with minimal sun exposure. To increase coverage, simply let first layer of product dry, then apply another layer. Single layer application is plenty of coverage for most people. The downside, its pricy and the container is not huge. It is well worth the price if you don’t mind spending a couple of extra bucks to save time, a little does go a long way, I just wish it would last forever.

To read more about sunscreens and the importance of consistent use, please visit The Skin Cancer Foundation for important and even lifesaving information.

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