Ever since I can remember, my mom has been like a tyrant about wearing sunscreen, but with very good reason. Skin cancer runs in our family at an alarming rate, with my mom having several recurrences, along with all three of her sisters and her mother. I know my risk full well, and when I know or even think I'm going to be in the sun, I put sunscreen on.
I can remember being at the beach, having to slather on thick, disgusting past-like sunscreens. Now that I buy my own, I look for ones that don't feel like vegetable shortening on my skin, but that still provide adequate protection. I've tried a bunch of kinds, and this year bought yet a new one to try. Alba Botanica, SPF 30 Facial Sunscreen.
Alba is a line of personal care items which are geared more towards natural with their ingredients. I've actually not had much experience with the brand, but was intrigued by this one simply for it stating no parabens on the bottle.
This particular variety comes in a pink squeeze tube which sits on its flip-top cap. It contains 4 ounces of sunscreen. Since I don't particularly care for being out in the sun to begin with, I this small size was good for me. It's more convenient to take along in my bag also. Besides, from my research, it's best to purchase new sunscreen every year for the best protection, even if it hasn't yet reached the expiration date. Sun protection (cancer protection) isn't something to mess with.
This sunscreen states it's SPF 30, hypo-allergenic, won't clog pores, and is water-resistant for up to 40 minutes. The bottle states its "facial" but I use it all over.
I hate thick sunscreens. Honestly, all sunscreens I've tried have terrible textures, greasy and filmy. Alba Botanica SPF 30 Sunscreen isn't too thick, which is very nice. It applies pretty easily and evenly without feeling totally heavy. That alone scores some good points with me.
It does still have that signature greasy texture. Even after a half hour it felt greasy. It rubs into skin well, but leaves a layer of greasiness. Not as bad as some other kinds out there, though. This sunscreen does state that it's "very emollient" so I knew it would be fairly greasy. It's not too terrible, and does wash off with soapy water ok.
Another thing that often bothers me about sunscreen is the scent. Alba Botanica SPF 30 Sunscreen has very little scent. It has a "sunscreen" scent but nothing like coconut, beachy, or other poignant scents. It doesn't have a scent other than "sunscreen" and if you don't know that scent, it's hard to describe. All sunscreens seem to have it, even if the product itself is fragranced with something specific. There is that underlying odor. Alba Botanica SPF 30 Sunscreen is as unscented as is possible with a sunscreen.
Although the aforementioned two aspects are very important to me, the actual sun protection and performance of the sunscreen is of course the most important part. I was out in the sun for several hours today, in creek water doing what I haven't done in years; catching crawdads. It's kind of a traditional family activity with, oddly enough, the women in my family. Where we went today was in the woods where there was about half shade and half sun. The best crawdads are in the sunny water, so that's where we looked the most. There were clouds in the sky at times, but when the sun was out, it was strong.
I applied Alba Botanica SPF 30 Facial Sunscreen before heading out this morning, and didn't get a spot of burn on me. I used it on my face, ears, shoulders, arms, and neck. I did reapply after having been out for awhile. My aunt, who was not wearing any sunscreen, got red.
I don't know that SPF 30 would be the best choice for hours of direct sun or beach sun, but for the kind of sun I was in today, it worked very well. The sun reflected off of the water as well, but my face isn't burnt, so I find that Alba Botanica SPF 30 Sunscreen is a pretty decent facial sunscreen.
Alba Botanica SPF 30 Sunscreen seems to be a great sunscreen for everyday sun exposure. It protects my skin well and I've been pleased with the results.
Like I mentioned above, Alba Botanica SPF 30 Sunscreen does not have parabens. Parabens are preservatives commonly found in skin care products, but have some potential health effects. I avoid them. I'm happy this sunscreen doesn't have them.
For actual sun protection, it contains 7.5% Homosalate, 7.5% Octocrylene, 5.0% Ethylhexyl Salicylate, and 2.0% Titanium Dioxide. Now, I know none of those are really all that good to be putting on skin and having absorbed into the body, but it's better than cancer.
Alba Botanica SPF 30 Sunscreen also contains a plethora of other ingredients, including a few a few organic botanicals. In fact, this sunscreen contains quite a few botanicals which help moisturize skin.
This sunscreen does state it's for faces, and that it won't clog pores. Since I'm prone to clogged pores and the evil little blemishes that come with that, such a claim is important to me. A lot of sunscreens I've used in the past have made me break-out. I've not noticed an issue with Alba Botanica SPF 30 Sunscreen on my face, and I usually wash my face very well as soon as I'm out of the sun.
Alba Botanica SPF 30 Sunscreen gives me the right amount of sun protection for being outdoors when I may not be able to find shade. I never sit directly in the sun for long periods of time, so I don't normally need a really high SPF. However, if I were going to a beach or somewhere with little shade, I'd likely reach for a higher SPF just to be safe.
Cost: I paid $5.50 from Vitacost.com.
- 100% vegetarian ingredients
- no animal protection
- re-apply every 2 hours, or after 40 minutes of sweating or being in water.
- made in the USA
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