As we’re in the middle of a heat wave in the UK it seemed like the perfect time to do a review of a sun cream I’ve had since December. I got this mini sized tube of Ultrasun Face in SPF 30 in the Marks and Spencer Advent Calendar and have been keeping it in case we had some sun this summer. I’ve been using it the past week and it’s still going so, although it’s a mini size, it has a fair amount of product in it.
This is a 25ml mini tube, the size you find in quite a few of their sets, but it’s also available in full sized 50ml (£16 – £20) and 100ml (£25 – £30). I’ve found it on a few sites so the prices may vary slightly. This is also the 30 SPF version, it’s the one I got but the one I’d probably choose anyway, though it’s also available in both 15 SPF and 50 SPF, some also seem to have a 50+ but I’m not sure if that’s the same as the 50 SPF. There are also anti pigmentation varieties and tinted ones so they pretty much cater for everything I can think of in the range of face sun protection.
Ultrasun isn’t available in many physical stores in the UK, online it’s available in a lot of places, the two I’ve bought from in the past are Marks and Spencer (though they don’t stock the SPF 30 at the moment) and QVC.
The tube for this is the mini one and the packaging for the 50ml seems to be a pump going by pictures but the 100ml is also this tube style. It is a very nice plastic, which sounds weird to say, but it’s soft and has a slight matte feel which does seem to make it easier to grip with greasy hands Han a lot if sun cream tubes I’ve had in the past. The lid also twists off easily so, again, easy to use when applying sun cream, but also holds on well by itself, I’ve had it In my bag with no worries about it coming off and making a mess.
Before I start saying about the sun cream side of this I should probably say about my skin as I know in the past I’ve had so many problems with sun creams and my skin that other people have loved so if you have a similar skin type to me it may work the same for you. My skin is dry, sensitive and acne prone, the main problems with most face sun creams is how greasy they leave my skin and cause flare ups or they react with my skin. Also I have very pale skin so, although I prefer to stay in the shade and don’t really want a tan, I find I have to acclimatise my skin to sun exposure over a couple of weeks as I always get an uncomfortable heat rash and I’d rather this happen when I’m at home so it doesn’t ruin any trips out. This means I do need a high SPF sun cream for when I’m getting my sun exposure, though I tend to go for factor 30 anyway even in the shade.
That’s enough about my skin, onto the sun cream itself. The formula for this is really nice, it spreads evenly on the skin and you didn’t really need much to cover your face, the small amount on my finger in the picture covers my face and neck. It doesn’t have a greasy feel, it does leave a slightly tacky feel to start with, a bit like some primers or serums do, but this leaves within ten minutes and ends up with nice, soft feeling skin that does feel moisturised but not overly so. It doesn’t leave an especially matte finish, more like my skin looks naturally, which I actually like in the summer.
It does work really well as a makeup base, I gave it a go to see how it would last and it survived well even on a hot days hich surprised me. It doesn’t make the foundation slip during the day or hold it so much it appears cakey. I don’t think it works well with a primer as well but it might for you, it probably depends on the type of primer, but with both it felt too heavy for me.
One of the benefits of this brand is that they claim it lasts all day without reapplying so, even though it’s more expensive per bottle, each bottle lasts longer because you use less each day. This does seem to work for me, I’ve used this face sun block as the only one with one application in a day when it was 30 degrees centigrade and sunny and my skin didn’t burn. I did work up to this as I don’t normally trust these that say they last all day but this one really seems to.
It claims to have anti-ageing properties though I don’t know how much of an effect these would have as I don’t use anti-ageing products to ensure able to compare it to. I’d say my skin does feel nice and firm though so I can see it helping with any lines you may want to smooth out. I should probably start using more anti-ageing products anyway, the age they say to start seems to get younger all the time so it’s always a good bonus in these kinds of products.
As far as the waterproof claim goes I would say this one is pretty good. I have used it in my hands a few times and it survived going in the pool, though I’m not so sure about actually washing them. One definite bonus is that it doesn’t leave an oil slick look on the surface of the pool so you don’t have that build up if you have a small paddling pool like we do.
Overall I am very impressed with this sun cream. I wasn’t sure what to expect given the cost of it but decide ld to try it as I have it and I am very glad I did. I’m definitely going to be buying this, probably in a bigger size as it’s better value, and maybe even try some of their other sun creams. As I’m meant to use SPF all year round because of medication even in the winte I might even get the 15 SPF tube for then, let’s face it the UK in winter isn’t the sunniest so I think most people don’t then so it may be overkill but I’d rather be safe and it’s actually a really nice moisturising cream as well anyway.
If you have sensitive or acne prone skin I would definitely recommend it. I think it’s good for normal skin types and I can see it working for oilier skin too as it really isn’t very greasy feeling but it might be a bit moisturising. It does work for dry skin but it isn’t the most moisturising so I definitely need a proper moisturiser in the evening for the dry patches but it might be enough for you. As far as the claims of waterproof, one application a day and that it works as a moisturiser I would definitely say it lives up to the them for me and, despite the high price range for me for a sun protection or just skin care product, it’s definitely worth it.
As I bought a full sized version of this I thought I would add on the end the information on this. The 50ml bottle is a pump at the top and one pump is more than enough for my face. It is a bit of an odd pump dispenser in that it has a ball in the end, though this does keep it sealed and stops it from drying out and becoming blocked once it’s started. It does also somehow seem to aerate the cream and seems to make it easier to apply as well.
There is also a chart on the inside of the box that shows how long it’s recommended you can stay in the sun with spf 30 on for various skin types which I think is useful to know anyway, even if you don’t get this particular sun block, so I’ve included it here. This is just a guideline though, you know your skin and this is a maximum, not the recommended time, so if you know that within an hour even with a high spf on your skin will burn then stick to the shade.