Monday, 1 August 2011

Beauty LAT: Sunscreen Rundown

I’ve been on something of a sunscreen quest recently. As a pale girl who likes being pale, and is easily prone to freckles and burnt skin, I really wanted to start getting a good sunscreen on my face to even out my skin and keep it protected (plus a good sunscreen is one of the best anti-aging things you can buy). It’s been a troublesome process however. My attempt to find a light, non-greasy, layerable (over moisturiser and possibly under primer) sunscreen which holds make-up has almost seemed impossible at times to be honest, but I’m getting happier now I’ve found options which I like. I wanted though to do a rundown on the sunscreens I’ve tried, to try and save anyone out there looking for the same thing, some time and energy. Please note though this is purely on the performance, value for money and application of the sunscreen, not on its ingredients as I don’t know enough to comment. Here we go…
Clarins UV Plus HP Day Screen SPF 40, £29.99: Expensive, but worth it. Very matte, fantastic make-up primer. Small tube size though (30ml). Not quite perfect, but very close. See my review here. 8.5/10

Shu Uemura UV Under Base Mousse SPF 30, £29.00: Also expensive. Fun and quick to put on, and relatively non-greasy when applied, but I hated this as a primer, it just seemed to mess up my make-up. Possibly better for drier skins. Slight beige tint, which does even out skin. Will last ages though I imagine as is 65g. I do find if I sweat or get oily it becomes a little greasy though. 7/10

Simple Sun Sensitive Protecting Facial Lotion SPF 50, £10.20: Well priced and easy to find in Boots or Superdrug, but really a moisturiser rather than a separate sunscreen layer, so not great if you want wear another moisturiser with it. Very heavy and quite greasy. Would be good for very dry skin, and good brand for those needing something low on irritants. If you just want a moisturiser with a high SPF, this might be worth looking at. Big tube at 75ml. 4/10

Elta MD UV Clear Very Light Sunscreen SPF 46: Hard to get hold of in UK (I paid around £25 for it on eBay). Nice USP- a sunscreen with Niacinamide to get rid of spots. Generally nice sunscreen- little bit too heavy, but not bad, and layers nicely with moisturiser and make-up, although doesn’t particularly make it last longer. Just not quite good enough to repurchase for the price for me, but if it’s more accessible to you and you want something for acne, this may be worth a look (although I don’t know that it’s massively speedy as a spot treatment). Average size at 48g. 7.5/10

Coppertone Sport Faces UVA/UVB Guard SPF 50: Not really one for make-up or everyday, but if you do a lot of outdoor sport or exercise, this is definitely worth a look, as it’s designed to be sweatproof. Big bottle (118ml) for the price (I paid around £8 on ebay), although must be ordered from USA. 5/10 (good for what it's supposed to do).

Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry Touch Sunblock SPF 55: Wanted to love this, but didn’t. Didn’t feel ‘dry touch’, felt quite greasy. Smelt weirdly like cigarette smoke (that could have been a fluke on mine though), and irritated my skin a little after a few days. Ok under make-up, not amazing. Has to be ordered from USA, but quite cheap for a large (88ml) tube, I paid around £10 on ebay. Again maybe for drier skins and less sensitive skins. 2/10

Clinique Super City Block SPF 40, £15.50: A good average sunscreen. Reasonably priced for 40ml, and easy to buy in most Boots stores. Little bit greasier than I would like, and not the best primer ever, but this is a good solid back-up if I ever find myself stuck without sunscreen. Oddly didn’t work with my Clinique moisturiser though. Slight tint, but sheers out when applied. 7.5/10

Clinique Super City Block SPF 25, £15.50: Really really orange. Hated it. Get the SPF 40 version if you’re pale like me. Don’t think it was much different to the SPF 40 version otherwise. 3/10

Loreal Solar Expertise Active Anti-Wrinkle & Brown Spot Matte Fluid Protection SPF50+: Nice enough sunscreen, but it just isn't matte. I don't find this works particularly well over a moisturiser, or under make-up. Cheap for 50ml, I paid around £10 in Superdrug. Better for drier skins, I'm using it to cover my neck and arms.

Well I hope that has given you some ideas of what’s on the market in terms of sunscreens at the moment, please let me know if you want a more in depth review of any of them!

Love L xxx


  1. I bought the Shu Uemura last year and really like, probably because as you say... I have drier skin. It's funny how much our likes/dislikes of even something as basic as sunscreen is so heavily tied into our skin types.

    Great post, was interested to read about the Neutrogena, that had been on my list to get at the start of the year. xx

  2. It really is, I love the idea of the Shu Uemura so much, but I can only wear it on make-up free days! Maybe in winter I might like it more?

    Thanks :) Well you're welcome to mine if you want to try it, I can't see myself using it much (or possibly again) so it's yours if you want! :) xxx

  3. That's kind of you - let me swap you, I'll drop you an email x


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