Ranking my sunscreens from best to worst!

I remember hearing Youtube's famed dermatologist extraordinaire, Dr Dray (Dr Andrea Suarez) say something along the lines of: the best sunscreen you can wear is the one you like, because you'll wear it every day. Which, logically, is true. It's better to consistently wear some protection (even if it's not the highest factor) than sporadically wear top spec. 

Ostensibly it may seem that the 'some protection' caveat doesn't apply here given that all but one of my picks are  SPF 50. But the Purito scandal (which I speak more about below) has shown us that factor labelling isn't always that trustworthy, so even your favourite SPF 50 may not be as effective as you might think. So the point still stands: you're better off finding an SPF you love regardless of its UV filters - though going for a factor 50 is at least a good start.  

With that in mind, I've decided to rank my sunscreens from my favourite to my least favourite. From best to worst! 

THE BEST

SOS SPF 50

The best sunscreen in my stash is this incredible Sun Cream by SOS, conveniently available on Amazon Prime for a very reasonable £15.50. I like this one the best because it is completely fragrance free, is completely transparent and leaves no white cast. It is not greasy in the slightest but has the most beautiful rich and creamy moisturising formula. Not only is it my favourite SPF but it's my favourite moisturiser full stop. It's brilliant. I've been seeing it a lot on Instagram lately (yes, I was influenced) and it's absolutely worth the hype. I wish they made it in a bigger tube because I'd pay more money for it.

10/10 

The best part: The perfect creamy formula

Natio Daily Defence SPF 50

Also coming in at the top is the painfully hard to find (sorry!) Natio Daily Defence SPF 50. I'm not sure if Australian-born brand Natio has gone bust or not. Their brand website is down (maybe just technical problems) but their products are still stocked in some online retailers. Though I can't find this SPF online! I purchased mine from my local 'big Tesco' (you know what I mean) and it cost me £13 something. I will definitely be going back to stock up after pay day! It is totally transparent, no white cast, and has a lovely light weight moisturising formula that isn't greasy. It is mostly fragrance free but contains vitamin E and aloe vera which are a bit ambiguous. From my understanding, in certain concentrations they're effectively perfuming ingredients. Having said that, this sunscreen doesn't have a scent and I haven't experienced a reaction (i.e acne) that would suggest fragrance ingredients. 

Score: 10/10 

The best part: It's so light weight 

Ultrasun Face Anti-ageing Lotion SPF 50

I have been repurchasing Ultrasun Face SPF for years and years so anyone that follows me on Instagram or has read one of my empties posts before won't be surprised that this is in the top 3. It's extremely light weight and is the perfect balance between matte and moisturising. It's not matte and drying, but it's not rich and creamy either. I'd call it dry touch (?) Whilst I would not say it has a white cast because it's not opaque, it definitely has a lightening effect. Personally I love the way it makes my skin looks, it evens skin tone and has an unusual smoothing, perfecting quality, which is why I've repurchased it so many times. Another reason why I love this one, by the way, is because it's nearly always on offer so it is easy to get a good deal on. 

Score: 10/10

The best part: The way it makes my skin look. 

Avene Intense Protect Sun Cream SPF 50*

This sun screen is another one of my favourites. Not only does it have a brilliant fragrance free, light weight and completely transparent formula, but it's really incredible value for money. It's only £20 for 150ml and by comparison, the SOS Sun Cream is £15.50 for 50ml and the Ultrasun Face sun screen is £24 for 50ml. The only reason this isn't the top one is because it has a 'wet' formula. Which though it means it's weightless and comfortable to wear, it is quite greasy. It doesn't bother me so much because I have dry skin, but I'll admit it isn't that flattering after a couple of re-applications during the day. So I generally layer this with the matte Eucerin sun screen I mention further below, because the two really balance each other out. And doubling up on sun screen is beneficial for added protection, so it's not an unnecessary extra step that I begrudge. 

Score: 9/10

The best part: it's excellent value for money.

They're alright... 

Eucerin Sensitive Protect Sun Creme SPF 50+

This Eucerin pick isn't the mattifying sunscreen, this has a thin cream formula. It's really nice, but it's in the "alright" category purely for the fact my best picks are so amazing by comparison. There's just nothing to write home about this one. It's nice, does the job, no white cast, but I wouldn't go out of my way to purchase it again. 

Score: 9/10

The best part: It's light weight

SunSense Daily Face Invisible Tint Moisturising Sun Protection SPF 50+ 

I hated this at first because it's has a matte finish, I couldn't wear it on it's own because applying enough to get full coverage to achieve SPF 50 protection just meant that it would peel off my face. But I actually really like applying it over greasy sun screens or using it to re-apply onto sweaty skin during the day, the matte finish is quite useful then and looks quite nice, and it has a very very subtle tint (not a glowy tint though) and no white cast either. 

Score: 7/10

The best part: The very subtle tint.

Garnier Super UV Anti-age Face Protection Cream SPF 50

The formula is quite nice, it doesn't leave a white cast and is free from fragrance, but something in the ingredients (probably one of the chemical filters) irritates my eyes a little. Nothing too drastic and it's not irritating for long, but that is unfortunately the case so I don't reach for it often. Because it's a nice small tube I keep it in my handbag for emergency reapplications, but I probably won't repurchase when this is empty. 

Score: 6/10

The best part: the small tube is great to pop in my handbag

Eucerin Sun Face CC Cream SPF 50

On it's own applied to bare skin this is terribly matte and doesn't build up well, and I was so disappointed because I could see from applying a thin layer that the tint was the perfect shade, evened my skin tone and made me look super glowy! But this has found a purpose in my stash as the mattifier for greasy sun screens and sweaty top ups. I basically use it just as a CC cream and it's perfect for that, but I wouldn't rely on it as my only protection from UV rays because it's too matte to apply liberally. 

Score: 5/10

The best part: the healthy glow 'fair' tint

THE WORST

Hawaiian Tropic Mineral Sun Milk SPF 30

So this has perfume in it so I wouldn't ever wear it on my face, but I was excited to try it on my body. But it's such a thin, watery lotion that it went everywhere! (Yes, I shook the tube before use) but it was just too watery to be useful, it was so messy. 

Score: 1/10

The worst part: it's like water in a tube!

Purito Centella Unscented Sun Screen SPF "50"

Whilst Purito marketed this as SPF 50+, independent testing found it was actually only SPF 19. It only contains two UV filters which was rather suspect. I was so sad because formula wise this was one of my favourites: light weight and moisturising, fragrance free and no white cast, and it made my skin look nice. 

Score: 1/10

The worst part: studies suggest it's actually SPF 19 rather than SPF 50

Altruist Face Fluid SPF 50 

This is another formula that's super wet and greasy. It looked like I'd literally dunked my face in water, and this appearance didn't subside! Worse still, this is a chemical sunscreen and I had a terrible reaction to it. My eyes burned terribly, so badly that I couldn't see and so painful that I honestly thought I was going to faint. I was so excited for this because it has otherwise excellent reviews, so it stung even more because I was so disappointed. 

Score: 0/10

The worst part: it burns my eyes! 



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