Friday, July 18, 2014

Summer Essentials: Drugstore Sunscreens (Meg and Cate's Picks)

Sunscreens are a definite summer must-have because we all know it is so important to protect our precious skin from the sun's rays which can cause skin cancer and premature aging. The sunscreen present in our makeup alone is not enough to protect us from the sun's rays.

I hear people complain a lot about not liking to wear sunscreen because they don't like the way it feels... it's too oily and greasy, it doesn't go under makeup well, it feels too heavy... So Cate and I have found some sunscreens that fit the bill. 

But cost is an important factor too; you don't want your sunscreen to break the bank in order to find one you like. Although it is worthwhile to protect your skin from harm, I know for those on a budget is hard to see that money leaving you... sunscreens aren't cheap! Cate and I have included a range of drugstore sunscreens in varying prices to help you find one that works for you!


Walgreens Sunscreen Lotion in SPF 30 - 2 for $5 or 1 for $2.99 USD
This broad spectrum sunscreen is a bargain if I ever saw one. My boyfriend and I picked these up when we were in Vegas. We didn't want anything expensive, just something that would do the job. I expected it to be greasy and leave my skin oily, but I don't have that many complaints! It's not as great to use on your face as the ones specifically designed for that use, but it's definitely usable. SPF 30 is the minimum I use so it fits the bill there, and I'll mostly stick to using it on my body now that I'm home, especially with my ever-expanding sunscreen collection.

Ombrelle SPF 60 Kids Waterproof Lotion - $13.97 - 20.00 CAN
This is one of the sunscreens I ended up getting at London Drugs on sale for $9.99 which is such a steal as you can see from this post that depending on where you look the prices can vary. Given the choice between adult and kids versions I usually go with the kids as they are often higher SPF, fragrance free, and for more sensitive skin. This Ombrelle lotion is hypoallergenic, fragrance free, colorant free and has quick absorption. I have always associated Ombrelle with sunscreen for sensitive skin because this was one of the only sunscreens my incredibly choose-y grandmother would, and still does, use on her delicate skin.

Aveeno Baby Sensitive Skin Mineral Sunscreen Stick - $9.08 - 12.99 USD
This is a mineral sunscreen which differs from the classic sunscreens above... Where as classic sunscreens use chemicals to absorb the sun's rays, mineral sunscreens use physical ingredients to reflect them. I've read a lot of conflicting information on sunscreens and their benefits and drawbacks, a lot of which is very confusing, but it seems mineral sunscreens may be the better choice as they don't often contain hormone disrupters. If you're looking for safer sunscreens, Audubon Magazine put out this list with some great suggestions.

This Aveeno Baby Sunscreen Stick is incredibly convenient because of it's small packaging (easy to slip in your purse or travel with). I also liked how it felt in my skin, it's not sticky, but is quite smooth. It's harder to rub in than a traditional sunscreen, but once I worked it into my skin and put on some moisturizer or foundation I didn't feel the difference- it wasn't heavy at all. This stick can really only be used on your face and neck, otherwise it would take forever and you would run out really fast! However, I use it on my tattoo as well- gotta keep 'em covered up lest the sun fade it!


This is one of those sunscreens that we always having lying around the house in case we run out of others. Banana Boat is just one of those brands that is synonymous with SPF. I have used this sunscreen on many occasions and I will say that in terms of being a waterproof sunscreen it really does hold up against water and sweat but that may be the best thing. This sunscreen is quite thick and has that god awful SPF smell. It also leaves a white overcast on skin which is also highly unflattering. I would definitely put this sunscreen in a beach bag if you are heading out to enjoy the water but other than that I would skip. 

This sunscreen I received in a Shopper's Drug Mart Sample pack and I was excited to try it because it is normally quite pricey and not what I would generally want to spend on sunscreen, especially when you can get good ones for a much cheaper price but I really liked this. It is a very light weight consistency that absorbs really fast into the skin so you can put on your makeup over top without looking like a ghost. 

This is by far my favourite sunscreen. It looks like both Meg and I can agree that Aveeno is doing sunscreens really well. This one is the perfect consistency, not too light but not unbearably thick and goopy. It also has a very pleasant scent, the same scent that is found in other Aveeno skincare products from their Active Naturals dance. Although I have not tested it in the water, I will say that it is sweat proof. I tend to sweat on my forehead the most and I did notice that compared to the one by Avene, this seemed to stay put. 

I hope you enjoyed this post and hopefully you got some ideas on which sunscreens to test out this year. 

Make sure to let us know your favourite drugstore sunscreens in the comments. 

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