I test out a lot of products for my job, but if there’s one thing I tend to hoard like crazy, it’s sunscreen. Not only is it a key step in my daily skin-care routine, but ever since I moved from Brooklyn to Miami, I find myself going through tube after tube. I’m not snobby about brands, but I do prefer mineral formulas since they tend to be friendlier to my oily, acne-prone skin. Plus, the zinc and titanium dioxide particles that physically block UV rays in mineral formulas feel a little less scary than the chemical-sunscreen ingredients that “work like a sponge” to soak up ultraviolet radiation before it has a chance to damage your skin. My latest fave: Tula’s lightweight mineral SPF lotion, which has become a runaway hit with me — and one I fully intend to slather on nonstop as I spend more time outside.
Earlier this year, I waxed poetic about Tula’s biodegradable acne toner pads — in other words, they know what they’re doing when it comes to products that are gentle yet effective. Sunscreens literally have one job, and that's to protect your skin from UV rays. However, this one is special — magical, one might even say — because it also brightens and provides oil control. Top it all off with a satiny-matte finish and you've got yourself a sunscreen that, for me, checks many a skincare box.
The lotion has a light peach tint, but don't be fooled into thinking it's a high-coverage product. It's very sheer (much more so than my tinted SPF of choice), and the lotion blended invisibly into my medium olive skin. The texture reminded me of some of my favorite Japanese sunscreens, which is to say, it was hyper-lightweight, with a runny, fluid-like consistency. (Tula's first sunscreen, Protect + Glow, has a dewy, gel-cream texture with a luminous finish.)
I squeezed a quarter-sized dollop onto my hand and applied it all over my face. It absorbed within seconds, leaving behind a velvety matte sheen. (Pro tip: This also worked great as an SPF-infused makeup primer.) The lotion is free of synthetic fragrances and didn't really have a noticeable scent. It's also got Tula's proprietary cocktail of six types of prebiotics and probiotic extracts, which can aid in maintaining happy, balanced skin. I can't say yet if it's made a dramatic difference in my overall tone and texture, but the immediate results were decided filter-like. The coverage is extremely sheer, so my skin still looks like bare skin — only slightly more evened out.
For $38, it's much more expensive than what you'll find in the drugstore aisle. On the other hand, this is far from your basic sunscreen. From the unique texture to the way it looks on, this is a true game-changer for oily folks like me. And with summer just around the corner (aka peak sweaty szn), I will be reaching for this grease-absorbing SPF nonstop.
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