As you know, I'm vacationing on Portimão, Algarve with my family... And this year, it's more important than ever that I protect my skin against the sun. I'm back on isotretinoin and my skin is suuuuper sensitive all over, so I really should avoid direct sun exposure.
As always, between 11 AM and 5 PM, I stay out of the sun... Sometimes, at 10 AM I'll stay poolside for a while, but always in the shadow and, on the not-so-steaming-hot days, I'll go to the beach around 6 or 7 PM and stay under the parasol... But still, and always, very, super, uper, duper protected.
I've realized quite a few years ago that tan is not something I'm meant to get along with so I avoid the sacrifice of spending hours and hours under the sun, leathering up the skin (I never quite did this, but you know what I'm talking about) - it's just dangerous and uncomfortable really... And I must admit I have learned to love my pale, "sickly" skin (no, I'm not mad :p).
Here I introduce my team then:
For my body, I selected these two loves - the Ultrasun SPF 50+ and the Bioderma Photoderm Kid SPF 50+. The first one is one of those white-cast, pasty, pain in the ass, sticky sunscreens for very sensitive skin types that protects REALLY well. It's possible to apply it and not be white, but you'll always tell when you get in the water... And in the hairy areas, like, for me, the arms, it can be complicated. If you want something super comfortable to apply and non-white, this is not the product for you. It has a scent that's a little bit weird and chemical-like at first, but, as soon as it sinks into the skin, it smells truly deliciously like candy or gummy bears - love it! It claims not to have fragrance, oils or emulsifiers added and it's pretty resistent to water... With that I mean that after I go to the pool or the sea, even after swimming for a while, I can still see the white cast on my skin - I always reapply, however, because I do need to be as careful as I can.
The Bioderma is still pretty good and hasn't failed me, as I do apply generously and very often, but I don't think it's as water-resistent - it's more of a milky texture, instead of a thick cream, and it's blue and less difficult to apply... I end up spending more of this though.
Body-wise still, I have this Sunific Solaire Iridiscent Milk Spray SPF 30 by Lierac*, generously offered by the national pharmacy Farmácia Marques. Actually, SPF 30 is not that much different from SPF 50 or 50+ in terms of protection, so 30 is still pretty high... However, I do notice it on my skin... Maybe less pale and less sensitive people don't, but I sure do - I need to apply more often and more generously.
Anyway, this sunscreen has absolutely nothing to do with the last two. Well, this is easy to apply, with a bronzed-glittery milky texture and it is "tan-activating". I haven't tested it to the tan, because I frankly don't care and I don't use when I'm facing direct sun exposure... As I am this sensitive, I saved this product for daily use (I use it all over because it's been really sunny and hot, and even just taking a walk is harmful for my super sensitive skin now). I pretty much love it - it's easily absorbed and non-sticky and it has a strong perfume-y scent that might be a little too much for the sensitive noses but, for me, it's just perfect! The only thing I'd change: I'd love it if there was a SPF 50+ of this for me... However, it's still pretty wonderful and I recommend it!
On my face, I trusted the care to Bioderma with the Photoderm AR SPF 50+*. It's a lightly shaded tinted sunscreen that melts right into the skin, specially fair or medium tones (even mine, that is extremely fair). Its texture is a bit more dense than the average face sunscreen. I was already using the daily care from this Anti-Redness range by the brand - because, with the meds, my skin got really sensitized and got occasional rosacea -, and I really like it. So I decided to take the risk on this and I'm glad I did! Besides lightly covering some redness (nothing too heavy, but it helps), it really works, protects the skin really well with no irritation.
The Thermal Spring Water (by Avène) is, of course, always a loyal friend to calm the skin that's being pissed off by salt or chlorine. And we still have the localized care for the lips: Avène SPF 30 and Bioderma Photoderm MAX SPF 50+. I use the first daily and the second one in the beach and poolside (direct sun exposure). However, the first one is much more moisturizing than the second one. My lips have been reaaaally dry (also because of the meds, damn them!) and, with the Avène, I can hold off the lip balm a little bit, but, with the Bioderma, it just can't be done - I have to reach for it. But none of them leave a white cast.
Finally, we have the Sisley Super Stick Solaire SPF 30* for sensitive zones. Oh my... I tell you, I have tried a lot of these localized sticks, but none as resistant to the water. At the time I thought this should be SPF 50+... However, the 30 didn't disappoint! Furthermore, ignoring my sensitivity, I covered myself in white and went ahead to the Slide & Splash water park with my sister, as we always do, and this stick was my best friend (no dirty minds aloud)... Even going on like five rides and waiting in line for them, the white cast stayed put! I've almost run out of it and I can tell you it is so worth it. There's a tinted version but mine is colorless. As I don't mind people staring at the white (because they stare at my paleness anyway), this is a must! It's a bit expensive, as you must guess, and, for that reason, it's probably out of range for some of us, but, if you're into Sisley or splurging on sunscreen, this is the one to aim at! I loved it!
Now, tell me everything: have you vacationed this year yet? What will you use? Do you have a favourite solar skincare brand?