I'm extremely not famous, but I'll let you in on something I share with certified hotties like Kourtney Kardashian, Hailey Bieber, and Drew Barrymore (to name a few): We all love the top-rated UV Clear SPF from EltaMD, an under-hyped skincare brand that specializes in skin-friendly, hydrating sunscreen. Aside from being name-dropped by celebs and beauty editors, EltaMD is a rather unlikely viral beauty hit. For starters, at $37, it faces stiff competition from drugstore juggernauts that clock in at half the price; and it boasts a prescription-quality packaging that runs counter to the minimal, made-for-Instagram branding that’s associated with many of today’s culty beauty brands. But perhaps that unique cosmeceutical crunchiness is part of its draw — at least for me, it is. Ahead, I tried the mystical bottle for myself on my acne-prone skin to see if it could be my sunscreen dream come true.
I've tried a ton of sunscreens in my career as a beauty writer, so I have a pretty good idea of whether or not something will break me out, and EltaMD's UV Clear sunscreen was love at first pump. The texture was lightweight but silky — my oily skin drunk it right up and immediately felt hydrated and bouncy. It dispenses as a white lotion, but blended in completely into my light-medium olive skin. (I also tried the popular tinted version, which is pretty close to my exact skin tone — it's almost like a sheer tinted moisturizer.)
Wearing It Out
After wearing it nonstop for two weeks, it still has yet to cause a pimple — which for my finicky complexion, is no small feat. While I try to go bare-faced most days, I tried wearing some foundation and concealer over the sunscreen to see if it could compare to the makeup-grippiness of Supergoop's Unseen Sunscreen. It was pretty good, but I did end up using some Tatcha Silk Powder to set and reduce shine. This probably would be less of an issue for any dry or combo folks, but when you're as oily as I am, there's a fine line between dewy and greasy.
While $37 is not exactly cheap for a single bottle of sunscreen, EltaMD's UV Clear is a definite upgrade from the drugstore aisle — it just feels expensive. Plus, while the UV Clear is a fan-fave, the brand has a veritable coterie of SPF; there's the aforementioned tinted one if you crave light coverage, and a just-launched glowy-finish one, as well.
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