Friday, May 30, 2014

My Drugstore Sunscreen Picks

I've certainly splurged on very pricey sunscreens before (I'll be posting a review of one of them shortly), but to be honest have rarely found them to be worth it. In fact, branded, expensive sunscreens are just as likely to contain the "Avoid" ingredients as drugstore ones and the performance gap just isn't enough to warrant the high price tag. 

Here are three of my drugstore sunscreen picks that you can get for under $10. You can zoom in on the ingredients list in the photo below and see that all three pass the "Avoid" test.  

Aveeno Natural Protection: This one leaves the most obvious white cast, so for that reason it's my least favorite of the bunch. It's fine for the body, but I would keep it far away from the face and neck - I once put it on and despite blending it as best as possible, I had people commenting on what the white stuff on my face was. Yikes. However, the texture is quite smooth and less goopy than some of the others, making it easier to spread out than a couple of the others.

I will warn you to watch out against the other products in the Aveeno sunscreen line. They have a Protect and Hydrate SPF 70 version with very similar packaging, but that's a chemical sunscreen with Oxybenzone. Stick to this Natural Protection version if you're doing this brand.

Banana Boat Kids (Yellow Tube): This is my favorite. It's also conveniently the cheapest of the three, costly less for 8oz than the others for only 3 or 4oz. You'll note that I have two kids choices up here, because it seems manufacturers are at least becoming aware of the importance of keeping harmful chemicals off kids skins. But don't be deterred, because these work perfectly fine for adults too!

This one is a nice medium between the other two. It's fairly easy to spread and does not leave a white cast when blended out. I use it on my face and body.

Banana Boat Kids Natural Reflect (Green Tube): To be honest I'm not sure what the major difference between this and the yellow tube are, especially as this costs over twice as much per oz. It is a significantly thicker texture though, so maybe it has a higher coverage (I noted the Titanium Dixoide is 3.6% versus 3.1% for the yellow tube)? Anyways, as much as I like this product, I really don't like the thick formulation. This one is literally impossible to rub in - you have to aggressively pat it onto the skin because it's so thick.

However, unlike the Aveeno one, once you pat this in it all but disappears, leaving a flattering glow to the skin. In fact, that's what I kind of like about mineral sunscreens - they make the skin appear luminous after. Just make sure to powder, or else your face will be too shiny.

As always, make sure to apply sunscreen often, and keep protected!

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