Sunday, June 7, 2015

Review: Elta MD UV Shield SPF 45

I bought the Elta MD UV Shield sunscreen quite a while ago, but I've only recently started wearing it often enough, daily for the last week and a half, to give a review. (It seems like I also neglected to include it in my monthly shopping budgets, oops! I ordered it right at the tail end of April after putting together my budget post for the month and forgot about it.) At $21.50 for the 3 oz size, it is a little pricier than a drugstore sunscreen would typically be, but is a fair bit cheaper per oz than the sunscreens I typically use from Shiseido and Biore's product line for Japan and Taiwan. 

Because the Shiseido one left a heavy white cast on the face after application and seems to have been reformulated without solving that problem, I've been looking for something new that is easy to buy in the United States. I've seen Elta MD mentioned on r/Skincare Addiction, and a friend also uses it and recommended it.

So far the Elta MD is working for me! As promised, it is invisible when rubbed in, and it absorbs very quickly. Although I typically prefer a lighter, liquid texture to my sunscreen (common with Asian products) and the Elta MD UV Shield is a lotion, the Elta MD feels light on the skin, though maybe just a touch heavier than the Biore one I like best. Either way, the Elta MD sunscreen is absorbed well enough that it doesn't cause any problems when I apply makeup. It also doesn't cause breakouts, which is the biggest thing I worry about when trying a new product. 

I generally don't like most American drugstore-brand sunscreens because they tend to sting on contact or when it gets in the eyes a while after application, often without my having gone out or done anything to cause the sunscreen to get in my eyes. I also dislike that heavier, lotion texture in sunscreens when they don't absorb well into the face. (I've tried an Oil of Olay moisturizer with sunscreen, the Neutrogena Ultra Sheer lotion sunscreen, and also Neutrogena's liquid formulation, all of which had various combinations of those problems.)

Pros: Absorbs well, doesn't cause problems with makeup application. No white cast on the skin after application. It doesn't cause breakouts for me. It is a good value compared to my other preferred sunscreens, especially in the 7 oz size.

Cons: More expensive than most drugstore sunscreens. It does feel a hair's-breadth heavier on the skin than the liquid-type Asian formulations I usually prefer. Some of the ingredients might exacerbate acne in others. 


  1. I feel like shisedio used to be so awesome, used their teal bottle ones for years, but now they leave a white cast on me, I don't use it anymore.

  2. I'm on my second or third (pre-reformulation) bottle at the moment, and the white cast is extreme! I swear it was never quite this dramatic before, alas...


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