This SPF 30 Moisturizer Turned Me Into a Mineral Sunscreen Fan

Health Information Relationships


Because I grew up in sunny Arizona, the idea that Sunscreen Is Important was drilled into my head from an early age. And I am now proud to be the friend that keeps a bottle of sunscreen in her purse and reminds everyone to reapply at the beach. But it took me until this year to find a mineral sunscreen that I actually liked—to the point that I now wear it literally every day.

I admit I had always been a little biased against mineral sunscreens because they tend to have a white cast and a texture that makes them harder to apply. But with my sensitive skin I’m often wary of trying out new chemical sunscreens that are more likely to irritate my skin (no emergencies yet, thankfully).

So when I finally tried Paula’s Choice Essential Glow Moisturizer, $29, which has broad spectrum SPF 30 protection thanks to titanium dioxide and zinc oxide, I was surprised in the best way possible.

It’s a moisturizer first, meaning it has a really pleasant, creamy texture that absorbs into the skin quickly leaving just a natural-looking glow behind. It is still a mineral sunscreen, so it does have a faint white cast, but I find that it fades quickly as it absorbs and isn’t noticeable by the time I leave my apartment. Seriously, I let a friend borrow it on a recent trip and she told me she legit forgot she was wearing it! (Full disclosure: We both have pretty fair skin, so those with darker skin may not have as much luck.)

I also love that this moisturizer has niacinamide, an ingredient I’ve found to be really helpful for controlling oil without causing any irritation the way an exfoliant might. And what moisturizer would be complete without actually moisturizing ingredients? This one contains things like glycerin (a classic humectant) and argan oil that help my skin feel hydrated without any greasiness.

Not only do I have a daily SPF I actually enjoy wearing, but I’m now looking at mineral sunscreens with a much more open mind.

Buy it: Paula’s Choice Defense Essential Glow Moisturizer SPF 30, $29, dermstore.com

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