Desperately Seeking Sunscreen

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She's So Bright - Desperately Seeking Sunscreen
Chalky face creams need not apply!

I use two sunscreens: Olay Complete SPF 15, which is my every day moisturizer, and Chanel’s UV Essentiel SPF 50 for days I know I’ll be in the sun. I have been using the Olay lotion every morning, since college, and have found none other as thin and non-greasy. It’s the perfect base for makeup and dries almost instantly. On days where I know I’ll be exposed to the sun, either at the beach or walking outside, I use the Chanel. It has a light, pleasant fragrance, goes on sheer, and has kept me 100% burn free over the years. While I would love to use this everyday, it has a few things not working for it: at the end of the day my skin feels pretty greasy, which is fine for the beach, but not great from day to day, and it’s very expensive. The tiny 1 ounce bottle is $55, so I use it sparingly and only when I need to. When we were in Santa Fe, I watched in horror as my husband dumped a handful out and lavishly covered his face with the lotion. Meanwhile, I use the teeniest drop to cover my face, neck, and ears.

Last week while applying my under-eye concealer I noticed very small dark freckle close to my eye. While this reminded me I was overdue for my yearly skin cancer check, it also made me realize I need to up my every day SPF to a more substantial number. I might as well be a vampire for how pale I am, but now that the sun is high and the days are long, it’s a good idea for me to take a little more care with how much sun exposure I’m getting. And so, I am looking for an everyday sunscreen that lies somewhere between the two products I already use. Maybe not in lieu of the Olay lotion, but something to go on top to provide real sun protection. I’ve tried Olay’s similar product in SPF 30, and Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Moisturizer SPF 30, but both left my skin greasy and breakout prone. I don’t know about you, but my pores like to breathe, so anything that feels heavy, greasy, or with too much coverage, simply wont work.

My ideal sunscreen is at at least SPF 30, sheer, dry to the touch, and may or may not have a tint. There’s so many products out there that I quickly get overwhelmed, but so far, my research has led me to these:

  • Lancer Sheer Fluid Sun Shield (SPF 30) – Lancer is the product line of a dermatologist to the stars. Celebrities swear by his products and I’ve seen this on a handful of Instagram accounts.
  • Glossier Invisible Shield (SPF 35) – I’ve never tried their products, but given that people swear by them I’m sure it’s good.
  • Josie Maran Argan Daily Moisturizer (SPF 47) – While the exactness of the SPF has me slightly perplexed, this chemical-free sunscreen is one of the highest rated. She also makes a tinted moisturizer which might be worth checking out.
  • EltaMD UV Clear (SPF 46) – With 5 stars and 847 reviews on one website, this seems like a serious cult favorite. The price is also spot on ($32.50 for 1.7 fl oz)
  • La Roche-Posay Ultra Light Sunscreen Fluid (SPF 60) – The French favorite leaves me yearning for slightly less-busy packaging, but the high SPF promises to be lightweight, fragrance free and is a great value.
  • La Mer Broad Spectrum Protecting Fluid (SPF 50) – The gold standard of skin care, La Mer products are hit or miss for me. Their classic cream breaks me out within a day and their prices are not for the faint of heart. I’m hoping to snag a sample, but would only splurge if it was truly the best out there. I’m sure it’s comparable to the Chanel – at least it is in price!

At this point I’m leaning towards trying the Nars, Lancer, and EltaMD, but a want ad is not well served if it hasn’t been answered – and this is where you come in! What are your favorite skincare products with SPF? Any recommendations?

Let me know your favorite daily sunscreen in the comments below! And in case you’re wondering, illustrations are my own.

She's So Bright - Desperately Seeking Sunscreen

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