The big claim with this sunscreen is that it won’t wear off when you sweat or when your skin is wet. Despite the ultra-high SPF number and the water-resistant claims, you must reapply after two hours to maintain protection.
The other point of interest with this sunscreen is its high SPF rating, which is overdone because there just isn’t that much daylight in most parts of the world to warrant such a high level of protection (the SPF number is about how long you can stay in the sun without burning, not about better protection). The only reason to consider sunscreens with super-high SPF ratings is if you know you won’t be applying it liberally (many of us don’t).
This sunscreen provides critical UVA (think anti-aging) protection with stabilized avobenzone. Its thin lotion texture is suitable for normal to oily skin, but the formula is disappointingly low on beneficial ingredients such as antioxidants.
This is not rated with a happy face because the extra amount of active ingredients paired with the alcohol in this sunscreen poses a greater risk of irritation than Aveeno's Hydrosport SPF 50 sunscreen.
- Provides broad-spectrum sun protection.
- Lightweight lotion texture applies easily.
- High amount of film-forming agents helps this stay on skin better than regular sunscreens, which is an advantage for outdoor activities, but you still need to reapply it.
- Claims make it seem like you can apply this and it lasts all day no matter what, but if you’re perspiring heavily or you go swimming you will still need to reapply it after two hours.
- Lacks beneficial ingredients (such as antioxidants) that all skin types need to be healthy.
- SPF 85 is overkill unless you know you won’t apply this sunscreen liberally, which is never a good idea.
- The high amount of actives required to reach SPF 85 increases the risk of irritation.
This exclusive formula provides long-lasting UVA/UVB protection and withstands wear off from water and sweat.
Active: Avobenzone (3%), Homosalate (7%), Octisalate (5%), Octocrylene (10%), Oxybenzone (6%), Other: Water, Octyldodecyl Citrate Crosspolymer, Triethanolamine, Silica, Beeswax, Styrene Acrylamide Copolymer, Dimethicone, Ethylhexyl Glycerin, Benzyl Alcohol, Glyceryl Stearate, PEG-100 Stearate, Potassium Cetyl Phosphate, Phenoxyethanol, Caprylyl Glycol, Nelumbo Nucifera (Lotus) Flower Wax, Ethyl Methicone, Cetyl Dimethicone Bis Vinyl Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Acrylates/Dimethicone Copolymer, Disodium EDTA, Chlorphenesin, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Starch, Fragrance, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate (Licorice Root), Diethylhexyl 2 6 Naphthalate, BHT, Sodium Polyacrylate, Ethylhexyl Stearate, Trideceth 6
Beginning with its first product in 1945, Soothing Bath Treatment, still sold today as part of the company's Baby line of products, Aveeno has prided itself on using natural ingredients. In some ways, they were a pioneer in the field, though for years the only natural ingredient of note in their products was oatmeal. Consumer products giant Johnson & Johnson purchased the brand in 1999, and wasted almost no time expanding it. A handful of bar cleansers and bath products were spun off into complete collections of facial-care products and an ever-growing number of body lotions and washes, not to mention shaving gels (Aveeno is one of the few companies whose shaving gels are truly fragrance-free).
Not surprisingly, many of the facial-care products from Aveeno are similar to those from Johnson & Johnson–owned Neutrogena. The differences typically lie in the natural ingredients each brand promotes. A cornerstone ingredient for Aveeno is soy, while Neutrogena has experimented (with varying degrees of success) with copper, retinol, salicylic acid, and melibiose. Overall, Neutrogena has a much larger and more comprehensive selection of products, though their formulas are also more problematic. Aveeno would do well to diversify a bit, or at least acknowledge that it takes more than a single star ingredient to provide superior skin-care products. As is, most of their anti-wrinkle products don't compete favorably with the more well-rounded options, not just from Neutrogena but also from Olay, Dove, and, in some respects, L'Oreal.
Getting back to the issue of soy, you'll see from the reviews it is indeed a helpful ingredient for skin—just not in the same multifaceted, does-everything manner Aveeno touts on each soy-containing product's package. A big proponent for Aveeno's use of soy is dermatologist Dr. Jeannette Graf. She is quoted on Aveeno's web site, stating that "It is now clear that the ability of natural soy to deliver multiple benefits to skin plays a lead role in high performance skin care." That sounds great but it doesn't explain why Aveeno ignores research on countless other antioxidants, skin-identical ingredients, or cell-communicating ingredients, all elements Dr. Graf uses in her separate, namesake product line. Interestingly, with Graf's own products relying on a blend of efficacious ingredients, including soy, it's a good question why she decided to endorse Aveeno's one-note soy products.
The bottom line is that when it comes to shopping for skin-care products at the drugstore, Aveeno, for all its talk of being a leader in "Active Naturals," doesn't have the all-inclusive product assortment needed to take the best possible care of your skin. However, paying attention to their top offerings is time (and money) well-spent!
For more information about Aveeno, owned by Johnson & Johnson, call (866) 428-3366 or visit www.aveeno.com.