February 6, 2005 12:51 PM   Subscribe

SunFilter: Any recommendations for a daily facial sunblock that 1) does not leave my face all shiny; 2) provides full-spectrum protection of at least SPF 15, preferably including a physical sunblock (zinc or titanium dioxide); 3) is ok for sensitive skin? Cost is no object.
posted by insideout to Health & Fitness (18 answers total)
I have the red hair/blue eyes/incredibly fair complexion thing going on- the word "tan" is not in my phsyical dictionary. Since I burn so easily I've become a sunblock connoseiur by necessity, and I always buy the Coppertone oil-free stuff. It doesn't wash or sweat off, it comes in a variety of strengths, and it's oil-free so it won't polish you up or leave you feeling greasy.
posted by baphomet at 1:08 PM on February 6, 2005

i'm a big lubriderm fan, and i'm pale too (i only burn), and tend to break out from most moisturizers and sunblock stuff.
posted by amberglow at 1:09 PM on February 6, 2005

I personally like Bare Escentuals. Yes, it's foundation, but it's a nice powder, doesn't look like you're wearing anything, and it's a physical sunblock of SPF 15.

I don't usually use sunscreen on my face at all, despite being a very fair skinned brunette (I don't usually burn or tan), but I got a prescription for a sun sensitising antibiotic just before going on a camping vacation, and the Bare Escentuals kept my face from burning. (standard sunscreen on my face + camping in a desolate wasteland is just not a good idea.)

Another one that some of my friends like is Oil of Olay Complete Defense (SPF 30).
posted by jlkr at 1:16 PM on February 6, 2005

I use Origins Have a Nice Day. It is really more of a moisturizer with sunblock (SPF 15) but it gets the job done. I have a pale complexion that is prone to burning (FAST). I hate the feel of lotion, much less sunblock, on my face, but this lotion is super duper light and you only have to use the tiniest amount. It absorbs right in and doesnt feel heavy and it doesn't make me look greasy. Also it has a very nice light fragrance that doesn't annoy or smell like a pina colada.
posted by contessa at 1:27 PM on February 6, 2005

I went to my dermatologist and got "Skinceuticals" Physical UV Defense SPF 30. I love it, though it does have zinc oxide and titanium oxide so you have to be careful not to put too much on or it will make your face look clownishly white.
posted by pomegranate at 1:29 PM on February 6, 2005

Lancome makes a "tinted day cream" that I have used in the past and liked very well. In fact, once during the time I used it, I was sunburned so badly that I passed out, and everything except my face was lobsterized. I never had so much as a twinge in my face from that experience. So, it's good stuff. Very non-make up stuff that evens out the skin (even for us ever-whiteys) and does what it says.
posted by Medieval Maven at 1:33 PM on February 6, 2005

I'd second Bare Escentuals if you are a woman (or very secure man, I guess) and currently wearing liquid sunblock in addition to makeup. Jlkr has pretty much summed up why it makes a good sunblock (its all in one, all "natrual", natural looking makeup, etc).

I'm a male and don't use the product, but I know several women that love it (family). I also happened to have met a woman a few days ago who told me its the makeup she is given after she has her regular chemical peels (or whatever tourture it is that women put themselves through to look younger). She said they gave it to her specifically for its sun-blocking properties.

That said, I have to disclose that I work for Bare Escentuals (IT dept), so take what I said with that in mind . . . . I'm really telling you the truth, honest!

I do know of a brand I would NOT recommend. You can find it any drugstore in the US. I forget the company that makes it, but it comes in a yellowy-golden stand-up tube, is marketed specfically for facial use and is called FACES. That shit burned my face so bad (after like, five minutes of use) that I might as well have just layed out in the sun anyway. I would have come out with a better color than beet red . . .
posted by Boydrop at 1:59 PM on February 6, 2005

I use Cetaphil with SPF 15. As you can see from that link, some people complain about greasiness, but I've never had that problem. Every product will react differently to different skin, but my face is practically translucent, so I do know that it seems to work against the sun.
posted by stefnet at 2:41 PM on February 6, 2005

I'm pretty fair and in the summers I get really sensitive to sun. I use Oil of Olay Complete moisturizer with UV protection (SPF 15) for Combination/Oily skin pretty much year round.

It's a light moisturizer, not at all greasy, and it contains actual zinc oxide. Also, relatively cheap. I've used Clinique tinted moisturizers, but this is much nicer and lighter.
posted by SoftRain at 2:47 PM on February 6, 2005

I second amberglow's recommendation for lubriderm. With other sunblock/moisturizers I've tried, I usually get oily/shiny forehead after a few hours, but not with lubriderm. YMMV.
posted by cactus at 3:39 PM on February 6, 2005

I use Shiseido products - my skin has always been super sensitive, and anything with sunblock in it made my eyes puff up like crazy. Shiseido has been great. I use their day essential products, which has the SPF built in. It served me well, even in the summer, through long, sun-beating-down baseball games. It isn't greasy, it doesn't sweat off. I'm not sure, though, what it contains. If you go to a counter, they'll give you a sample size that will last you a week - try it out. (It's almost fragrance free, which is also important to me.)
posted by dpx.mfx at 3:43 PM on February 6, 2005

Eucerin Face Protective Lotion--I've used it for about 7 yrs.. My dermatolgist recommended it. I have changed dermatologists, but they seem to always be fond of this product. Non-comedongenic (won't block pores), reasonably priced, SPF 25 with UVA/UVB Protection and fragrance free. Readily available at your neighborhood drug store or Target type store. I have a fair complexion and use this daily.
posted by 6:1 at 3:58 PM on February 6, 2005

I use this from Kiehls- no physical sunblock, but doesn't leave my skin oily. (I swear, I don't work for Kiehls- even though my Kiehls-heavy comment history might suggest otherwise)
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 4:28 PM on February 6, 2005 [1 favorite]

I second Shiseido (those Japanese really know pale skin care) and Kiehls UFM.

Also, don't forget a chapstick with SPF. Your lips are sun-sensitive too. I recommend this from Kiehls. For the ladies this product also comes tinted and it is something I cannot leave the house without.

And mad props to you, insideout, for stipulating that cost is no object. You can't pay enough to protect your skin.
posted by tinamonster at 5:58 PM on February 6, 2005

Clinique makes a product called City Block that i have used for years - and it meets all 3 of your requirements.
posted by tizzie at 6:32 PM on February 6, 2005

I love the whole Cetaphil line.
posted by scazza at 7:10 PM on February 6, 2005

i can't use any sunscreen which has oxybenzone as one of the active ingredients, and sadly this has typically restricted me to using baby sunscreens, which are usually rather greasy.

dpx.mfx - your description sounds like my oxybenzone allergic reaction. does your sheshido contain oxybenzone? look for it under the active ingredients list.

i love anthelios gel by la roche posay in spf 40. it's fragrance free, non greasy and very water resistant. best of all, i'm not allergic to it at all. yay.
posted by netsirk at 8:43 PM on February 6, 2005

I like the Body Shop's Vitamin E facial day lotion (uses titanium dioxide.)
posted by Zed_Lopez at 12:00 PM on February 7, 2005

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