My search for the “Best Sunscreen”

I have been on the hunt for the perfect sunscreen for quite a few months now. There are way too many sunscreens out there in the world, yet, finding the one perfect for you can become a bit of a struggle.

Firstly, if you are a sunscreen enthusiast, you are very well aware of why one needs sunscreen in their lives. And like me, you are also on the lookout for the perfect sunscreen or perhaps you’ve found your holy grail already, one that ticks all the boxes. If that’s a yes, please reach out to me in the comment section below, or on my Instagram and let me know.

For those who are fairly new in the skincare / sunscreen game – please note – SUNSCREEN is very, very, very important. I’m not a certified dermatologist or an esthetician, but I believe I have the right to say that a sunscreen usage in one’s life is not debatable at all. It prevents the risk of skin cancer, protects you from the sun’s harmful UV rays and also prevents premature aging of our skin cells. Furthermore, I request each one of you to research more about the benefits of sunscreen, what are the different types of sunscreens that are out there etc.

For now, let me begin with my skin care journey. Follow me 😊

So, I was introduced to the world of skin care, somewhere towards late 2018.  I was married, I had moved to a new city, I worked from home and I had a little extra time in my hands and I explored the skin care community on all kinds of social platforms – mainly Instagram and YouTube. And I discovered this whole world of skin care products, content creators, brands and routines and so on and I found out how important it is to have a sunscreen in my routine every single day. So naturally I explored my options and got myself this brand when I was in India – LA SHIELD Sunscreen Gel (SPF 40)

This one was fairly good. I must’ve purchased this around 3 or 4 times thereafter. I stuck to it for quite a long time (almost till mid 2020 – so that’s almost 1 and a half year). However, one thing I had started to hate about it was how it used to pill up (forming up in balls and not blending into skin effectively) at the time of application. It took a long time to blend into the skin and it gathered up in balls on my skin and having it as a base under my makeup during the day was a nightmare. Hence, I decided to switch to a new one.

The next sunscreen in my life was the Krave Beauty – “The Beet Shield”. I fell instantly in love with this one. The consistency, the ingredient list, the texture, the wearability under makeup and the absence of the typical “white cast”, was absolutely perfect. This continued for a while as well. And I continued to repurchase this for another few months up until the recent Korean Sunscreen fiasco happened and they recalled this from the market. ☹ I till wish they come back with a reformulation (with the correct SPF) of this one and I will go back to using the same again. I absolutely loved it.

The third sunscreen in my life was the “Anthelios” Invisible Fluid from La Roche Posay. Now this one is a veteran. La Roche Posay is a well-known French Brand. It has been in existence since 1975 and its parent group is L’Oréal,  the French beauty giant. The formulation of this one is very similar to the Krave beauty. Check this Instagram post out for a comparison between the two.

Just one problem I have with the La Roche Posay is the dryness I face within an hour or two after the application. I have an extremely dry skin type. Most people (with oily and combination skin types) have oily areas around their nose. Whereas, in my case the area around my nose is one of the driest and the flakiest parts of my face. And the La Roche Posay adds to this dryness. That’s the only complain I have with this one in addition to its price. It is priced at UAE Dirhams 136.50 (roughly USD 37) for a 50 ml bottle. But I love its texture and the fact that it blends so well into my skin.

So I kept my search on and the next one I bought was the Cetaphil Sun Very High Protection Light Gel and this has got to be least favorite among all the sunscreens I have had. It has a terrible white cast, almost turns me blue. But there’s no doubt about the efficacy of this one. The ingredients are wonderful and I’m also a 100% sure that this is a great sunscreen. It does what it is supposed to do – protects you from the Sun. But it is not a great sunscreen in terms of its cosmetic usefulness. But that is something you have to deal with when it comes to mineral / physical sunscreens. They are here to do what they’re meant to do. So if you’re someone who doesn’t mind the white cast or its wearability under makeup, then this one’s for you. This one’s also for each one of us on our outdoor days at the beach, a picnic at the park etc. because it will protect you from the UV rays pretty well.

So the next one I purchased was the “BIO DERMA Photoderm MAX SPF 100”. This one’s a good one. The texture of this one is somewhere between the Cetaphil and the LA Roche Posay – not too runny , not too thick, perfect lotion like consistency. The white cast is not as bad as the one from Cetaphil, but not completely absent. However, this white cast is manageable. But the one problem I have with this one is the pilling up. It doesn’t blend into your skin too well, perhaps it’s because the quantity of the product is too much. But with sunscreens you have got to take enough to ensure optimum coverage and protection on your face.

So, this one would’ve been my next holy grail if it would not have the slight white cast and the pilling problem But apart from that I’m pretty sure this one’s a great sunscreen, just not great in terms of its wearability under daily office settings. But that is something you always have to deal with. But there’s no doubt whatsoever in terms of its efficacy.

Below is a picture for comparison between the last three sunscreens (LA ROCHE POSAY, CETAPHIL & BIODERMA) in terms of their white cast.

Comparison of White Cast

So, I’m now back to using my La Roche Posay as of July 2021, the time that I’m writing this article at. But since I still have some minor issues with it (the dryness primarily), my search for the perfect sunscreen is back on.

I will do a part two in the future as and when I discover and try out new products. So stay tuned! 😊

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