Here Comes the Sun

Despite it technically still being spring, the Victoria Day weekend marks the unofficial start of summer in our fair city.  Over the past few weeks, I’ve tested out 5 different sunscreen products – plus a sunless tanning foam – to make sure your skin is ready for the heat!

{Here Comes the Sun:
6 Great Sunscreen and Sunless Tanning Products To Protect Your Skin}

Disclaimer: I received the products below at no cost for editorial consideration. All opinions are my own. 


There are a huge amount of sunscreen products available on the market nowadays. We all know why it’s important to wear SPF, but what type should you choose? Picking the right brand, formula, product, and SPF level can be a real headache! I’ve tried out 5 different sunscreen products and 1 sunless tanning product to help you narrow down your search.

Read on to find out more about offerings from:

  • Shiseido
  • Clé de peau beauté
  • CeraVe
  • Paula’s Choice
  • Apothekari Dermaceuticals, and
  • Vita Liberata


Shiseido UV Protective Stick Foundation

This foundation packs a broad spectrum SPF punch of 37, which is slightly higher than the industry standard of SPF 30 for face sunscreen. The formula glides on easily, and successfully protected my skin during my outdoor tests. It’s also water-resistant for up to 80 minutes, which is definitely a bonus. The formula blends well, leaving a slightly dewy finish. The product’s compact size, and the fact that it is a solid “stick”, mean that this is one sunscreen option that would be easy to travel with.  One major downside, however, is that the Protective Stick Foundation ($35) is currently only available in 3 shades, all in the ivory-beige range. The brand does have some translucent options as well, but hopefully Shiseido extends its foundation shade range in the near future to be more inclusive of folks with darker skin tones!


Clé de Peau Beauté Broad Spectrum SPF 25 Concealer Stick

Since the skin around our eyes is the thinnest and most sensitive on the face, it’s extremely important to protect. Many suncreens, however, can make your eyes sting and are not meant to be applied around the eye contour. A concealer that contains SPF is a great way to correct any dark circles you may have while simultaneously protecting this sensitive skin from sun damage. Clé de Peau Beauté’s Broad Spectrum SPF 25 Concealer Stick ($95) is a solid option in this category. It’s pricey, but the formula is so rich that you don’t need very much product to cover the eye area, so one tube will last for months. The concealer blends seamlessly and contains an illuminating powder to brighten as it covers. Unfortunately, the shade range for this sunscreen product is also fairly limited, with just 6 shades available.


CeraVe Ultra-Light Moisturizing Lotion SPF 30

DJS has been loving CeraVe’s SA Facial Cleanser, but my top pick from the brand lately has been the Ultra-Light Moisturizing Lotion SPF 30 ($17.99). As with all of CeraVe’s products, this moisturizing sunscreen is developed with dermatologists, so it’s great for anyone with sensitive skin. And the formula really is true to its name: it’s incredibly light, absorbing quickly and leaving a matte finish. The ceramides and hyaluronic acid included in the formula mean that this baby is extremely hydrating, helping your skin restore its natural barrier so sun protection is even more effective. Unsurprisingly, this lotion performed extremely well in my tests, protecting my skin against some intense noontime rays with no problem at all.


Paula’s Choice On-the-Go Shielding Powder Broad Spectrum SPF 30

Raise your hand if you’ve ever had on a full face of makeup when you realized that you needed to reapply your sunscreen. In the past, your options in that situation have been to wash your face, then reapply sunscreen and your makeup (LOL no), try to smear some sunscreen on top of your makeup (hi, clumps), or hope that your sunscreen from this morning is still holding out (unwise). Rest easy, friends: Paula’s Choice’s On-the-Go Shielding Powder Broad Spectrum SPF 30 ($29 USD) is here to save the day!

This brush-on powder sunscreen is a great way to touch up your sun protection throughout the day. I wouldn’t use it as my only sunscreen (that didn’t work too well during my testing, nor does the brand recommend it), but this powder is perfect as an added layer on days when you need an extra shield. It’s also mattifying and pore minimizing, so you’re touching up your sun protection and your complexion at the same time! The brush head is magnetic, and can be easily removed for cleaning, which is a brilliant move. Patio season, meet your new best friend.


Apothekari Dermaceuticals Shade SPF 30

If you’re looking for a more natural sunscreen that still provides protection, this one is for you. Apothekari Dermaceuticals is a Canadian brand that offers a selection of skincare products, all formulated without parabens, SLS or SLES, sulfates, silicone, phthalates, or other irritants. Their Shade SPF 30 Broad Spectrum Mineral Sunscreen ($45) is completely fragrance-free, and makes use of ingredients like zinc oxide and red algae extract to protect your skin from the sun’s rays. It has a slightly thicker formula than many facial sunscreens, but absorbs well and doesn’t leave any greasy residue. Shade performed just as well as the CeraVe sunscreen in my testing, which is impressive for a natural formulation.

Vita Liberata Invisi Foaming Tan Water

While no one wants to have sun damage, some of us do still like the look of a full-body tan. Unfortunately, many sunless tanning products are absolutely riddled with chemicals, and are notorious for staining clothes and even furniture post-use! Vita Liberata’s Invisi Foaming Tan Water ($49) is quite literally a clean alternative.

Its transparent formula goes on clear and is completely transfer- and odor-free. Plus the brand uses natural and organic materials like pomegranate, licorice, and ginkgo biloba in its formulations, leaving your skin soft, hydrated, and soothed post-tan. Vita Liberata products are free from parabens, perfume, alcohol, sulfates, and other nasties, but still create a gorgeous deep tan that can last for up to a week.  As a tanning newbie, I still found the product easy to use, and I got a lovely, natural-looking glow within a few hours of application. I used maybe 1/5 of the bottle to cover my whole body, so I can definitely keep my natural sunless tan going all summer.


How do you keep your skin safe during summer months? Did your go-to sunscreen make our list? 

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