Peter Thomas Roth Water Drench Broad Spectrum SPF 45 Hyaluronic Cloud Moisturizer

What it is: A facial sunscreen

What it does: Protects from UVA/UVB damage while hydrating skin

Star ingredients: Sun protection filters (Avobenzone, Homosalate, Octisalate, Octocrylene), Glycerin, Hyaluronic Acid, Argan Oil, Vitamin E, Ceramides


The latest release in the popular Water Drench line, this is an SPF 45 version of the classic moisturizer. It is very light, silky, and hydrating, providing a generous layer of moisture to the skin while not feeling heavy or oily. I would say the major departures from the original formula would be the color (it is white before blending into skin) and the overall feel of the formula on the skin. It is slightly more…nourishing? When I used the original moisturizer as the last step in my skincare routine I would often feel the need to apply something heavier afterwards. I don’t feel the need to do that with the SPF. That being said, it is still super lightweight and fluid-like.

Being a traditional “chemical” sunscreen it leaves no trace of white cast. It is very comfortable to wear on a daily basis (with one negative that I will get to) and reapplies with zero fuss. It leaves a glowy finish without appearing greasy and generally sinks in and smooths out the skin.

Now for the negative aspect: it stings the crap out of my eyes. I tolerate most sunscreens around my eyes, chemical and physical, and this one had me weeping. I decided to keep using it on the rest of my face and avoided my undereye and eyelid, and I have not experienced any irritation since then. The downside is that I am forced to use a separate SPF for my eye area, which is an extra step that I can usually avoid.

All in all, it is a usable formula for the face and body in general and has worked very well for me during the hot summer months. It has the potential to be a favorite, however considering how cruel it is near my eyes I am not rushing out to repurchase it.

Price: $52


SkinMedica Essential Defense Everyday Clear SPF 47 / PA++++

What is is: A facial sunscreen

What it does: Protects against UVB/UVA damage

Star ingredients: Zinc Oxide, Octinoxate

Review: This is one of the best sunscreens I have used thus far. It is lightweight yet hydrating, smooth and silky, and reapplies like a dream. Unlike other similar sunscreens (I’m looking at you, Elta MD UV Clear), it does not pill up on my face every time I apply it or reapply it. It is marketed towards oily/combination skin types, but I feel it would work very well for most people. Since zinc oxide is one of the filters in this sunscreen, it leaves a very slight “residue” on my fair-complexion skin (I wouldn’t call it a cast), but it is not overly apparent. I tend to wear this when I am at my home, when I am outdoors, and for informal occasions and general errands. The formula also includes Niacinimide, Hyaluronic Acid, Green Tea Extract, and Vitamin E. Overall, very cosmetically pleasing with excellent UVA/UVB protection.

Price: $38

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