This year, I’ve gone through 3 tubes of sunscreen, all of which I’ve been hearing are quite good. Here’s my take:
Shiseido Perfect UV Protector WetForce (SPF 50+)
We were going to Siargao for a family trip and my sister decided to invest on a good sunscreen for our face. She wanted something waterproof since we’ll be going in and out of the water and to be honest, sunscreen melting right after jumping in the water is just…not ideal. We decided to go for this sunscreen since the sales lady was raving about it. We didn’t really do a background check on it because we’ve been using some Shiseido products in the past.
Wrong! During the trip, both our faces stung pretty bad whenever we put the sunscreen on. We haven’t gone near the tube since.
So what went wrong?
I decided to go through the ingredients list…
Complete Ingredients list:
Water, zinc oxide, ethanol, isododecane, ethylhexyl methoxycinnamate (octinoxate), caprylyl methicone, butylene glycol, bis-ethylhexyloxyphenol methoxyphenyl triazine (Tinosorb S), sucrose stearate, PEG-60 hydrogenated castor oil, dimethicone, silica, ethylhexyl triazone (Uvinul T 150), dextrin palmitate, xylitol, diethylhexyl succinate, menthol, menthyl lactate, nylon-12, PEG/PPG-14/7 dimethyl ether, thiotaurine, Saxifraga stolonifera extract, royal jelly extract (1), Sophora angustifolia root extract, PPG-17, isostearic acid, triethoxy capryllysilanedistearyl dimonium chloride, (dimethylacrylamide/sodium acryloyldimethyltaurate) crosspolymer , sorbitan sesquiisostearate, succinoglycan, cellulose gum, citric acid, butylated hydroxytoluene, tocopherol, trisodium EDTA, stearic acid, sodium pyrosulfite, sodium citrate, Syzygium jambos leaf extract, fragrance.
…and found a few red flag ingredients:
Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate is mainly used as a UV filter and is found in most over the counter sunscreen products. While this is FDA approved (for concentrations up to 7.5%), there have been studies that such ingredient can cause cell death or implicate cardiovascular disease. It has also been linked to allergic reactions.
I’m kind of surprised to find this ingredient in here considering citric acid can cause photo sensitivity. In addition, citric acid can cause irritation to people with sensitive skin.
I’m pretty sure this is what caused my reaction because I’ve done a patch test and was told to…avoid oranges and the like.
If you have sensitive skin, you might react to Menthol which happens to be a common skin irritant. Menthol is also an alcohol and can sometimes cause skin dehydration, especially if you have dry, sensitive skin.
Considering the formula consists of 2 possible skin irritants, I wouldn’t recommend this for anyone with sensitive skin since there’s a big chance you’ll get a bad reaction, like me. But, hey! If you don’t have highly reactive skin and you have bucks to spare, then why not?
Biore UV Aqua Rich Watery Essence SPF 50+
I’ve been hearing about this product from different beauty bloggers and I was so excited to try what everyone called a ‘holy grail’ product. So when my bestfriend visited Osaka and came back with a tube for me, I went apeshit (inside).
One thing I really loved about the product was how it felt AND looked like you didn’t have sunscreen on. Because, let’s be real: we all hate wearing sunblock because of that typical sunblock look and smell.
I could definitely say this is a product I’d wear everyday as compared to my Shiseido, which had the tendency to leave a whitecast if not blended well. The Biore, was watery and thin so it was easily absorbed. It’s also good to note that the formula contains 3 powerfully moisturizing ingredients: Propylene Glycol, Butylene Glycol and Sodium Hyaluronate. Good for dry skin!
Unfortunately, I did react to the product. I can’t tell if it’s because my skin was flaring at the time. I’m thinking this was due to the alcohol present in the formula which caused my already dry skin to dry up even more or maybe it’s the Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate again. I don’t really think I do well with chemical sunscreens.
Either way, that was the end of my love affair with this holy grail. I would still recommend this if you have oily skin but definitely avoid if you have dry, sensitive skin like me.
Bioderma Hydrabio Perfecteur SPF 30
Last but not least, the Hydrabio Perfecteur. This is what I’ve been using at present. I bought this on a whim in Rockwell. This was about the time I started getting more aware of how important SPF is in a routine. Yes, guys. It’s important. This was another case of brand buying for me since I didn’t do a background check (again) on the product and just went for it. I mean, I’ve been exposed to Bioderma products and I haven’t really reacted to any of them. My tita, a dermatologist, stocks Bioderma in her clinic so I thought it was a safe brand for me to use as well.
So far, I haven’t reacted to the product severely. I quite like the matte texture it has when I put it on. Plus points for being sulfate and paraben free. However, I do have to note that this contains Salicylic Acid (commonly used for brightening), which can irritate. Though, in my case, it doesn’t.
I think my con for now is how it doesn’t really seem to do anything special? I also want to use a product that has SPF 50 and not SPF 30, for more protection. I’ll probably keep using this until I find a better product.