This is a translation of my German article Mineralischer Sonnenschutz 8: Naturkosmetik im Test 2018.
Finally! My annual organic sun care post is online. I had to be very patient this year until I had all of the sun care products together – my last purchases were only made last week! A bit of background on these sun protection posts: For the last seven years I have been testing new organic sun care products, usually during the first half of the year because most sun care-related products are launched in January/February. Then I publish a detailed article on Beautyjagd in early summer, usually in June.
In these articles I review the most interesting organic sun protection launches from German, European and international beauty brands. After-sun products and tan-prolonging products are not included; my review articles focus squarely on mineral sun protection. I try to include products from different price categories in my reviews (ranging from own label beauty all the way to premium brands) and I make sure that the brand mix features both mainstream and indie labels. Every product you read about I have tested on myself.
If you click on the links below you’ll see that my Best of Organic Sun Care articles seem to get longer every year, with more product offerings. This development also reflects the rate of innovation in the German and international organic sun care sector – every year interesting new products appear on the market, offering a constantly expanding range of application formats, product textures and active ingredients. So far I have posted seven Mineral Sun Protection – Best of Organic Sun Care review articles.
- The first post appeared in 2012: I talked about sun protection in general and then reviewed products from Eco Cosmetics, Kibio and Florame (Kibio has since disappeared from the market).
- The following year I presented sun creams from Melvita, Eco Cosmetics, ThisWorks, Vivesana and Maienfelser.
- The 2014 article showcased products from Biosolis, Eco Cosmetics, Kimberly Sayer, Lavera, Alverde, Ringana and Bare Minerals.
- In my 2015 sun care post I featured sun care from Eco by Sonya, Bio Beauté by Nuxe, Bioregena, The Organic Pharmacy, John Masters Organics, Lavanila, Badger, Evoa, Eco Cosmetics, Biosolis, Alteya Organics and Ambient. I also tested products from Tea Natura and Bjobj and Lovea.
- My 2016 article presented new products from Algamaris, Acorelle, Biosolis, Innisfree, Balance me, Goddess Garden, Alterra, Lavera and Beyer+Söhne. This was also the first sun care review article that we translated into English so you might want to start here 😉 .
- And last year, 2017, the Best of Organic Sun Care post featured products from Algamaris, De Mamiel, MyChelle, Badger, Eco Cosmetics, Acorelle, Bigood, Sanoflore, Alteya Organics, Kypris, Josh Rosebrook and La Saponaria.
Like every year I have standardised my product descriptions. In each individual review I cover product texture, product comfort/wearability (how comfortable the product feels on my skin) and the whitening factor and then finish with my personal opinion on the product.
- I have divided product comfort/wearability into the categories “imperceptible” – “very pleasant” – “pleasant” – “ok” (which means that the cream felt a bit sticky or pasty on the skin or that I noticed my skin heating up underneath the product after a few hours) and “unpleasant” (the product feels heavy on the skin). Any really “unpleasant“ products are not included in this article because there are way too many fabulous sun creams around to waste time on heavy or sticky products. And speaking of sticky products: I usually test the stickiness and oiliness of a sun cream by applying it on half of my face and then using a blotting paper or tissue to test how much oil was left on the paper or how long the tissue stuck to my skin.
- The whitening factor can be “very light” – “light” – “medium” or “strong” (as an indication: I have light to medium-toned skin).
All of my measurements are of course subjective; I do not have access to lab equipment or tools that are capable of generating actual scientific data. Some of the sun care products I bought myself (I’m beauty crazy and can’t help myself!), others I received as press samples for product reviews. And now: curtains up for the sun care novelties of 2018!
Sunscreen LSF 30 from Mádara for face and body
This is the first sun protection launch in the portfolio of Latvian organic beauty brand Mádara. At Vivaness trade show this year the company presented three new sun care products: The tinted Anti-Pollution CC City Cream with SPF 15 (which I featured on Beautyjagd here) as well as the Sunscreen SPF 30 for the face and the Sunscreen SPF 30 for the body.
The two new sunscreens immediately caught my attention: the Sunscreen SPF 30 for the face is lightly tinted (so there is almost no whitening) but without any coverage; it merely evens out the skin tone a bit. This shade should be suitable for almost all skin colours (for very light skin tones the sun cream might be a little too dark). The whitening factor of the Sunscreen SPF 30 for the body is also very low (you can barely see it). Both sun protection creams are packaged in tubes and are easy to distribute on the skin; the scent is subtle and fresh. The texture of the Sunscreen for the face felt more protective and a bit richer (product comfort pleasant to very pleasant), with a glowy finish (I need a mattifying powder on top). The only skin care product I wear underneath the sun cream is a light fluid or serum. The body sun protection cream is almost non-oily and has a silky finish.
The sun protection filter in both products is zinc oxide, it’s the second ingredient listed (both products are based on aloe vera). The product formulas also contain antioxidant ingredients such as raspberry seed oil or plant stem cells derived from the Northern Dragonhead plant. The INCI does not list any nano particles. The products offer both UVA and UVB protection. Certified by Ecocert; not vegan (beeswax). Contains 40ml (Face) resp. 100ml (Body). Price: 27 Euro (Face) resp. 19 Euro (Body). Available in selected organic beauty stores and online, for example at Wolkenseifen or najoba.
My tip: You can also use the body sun cream on your face. I think Mádara did a great job with these two sun care products!
Sunsprays from Eco Cosmetics
Finally German brand Eco Cosmetics is also offering sun sprays! I selected the Sunspray SPF 30 Sensitive (fragrance free) and the Sunspray SPF 50 Q10 Toned for my product testing. Both products need to be shaken well before use: they are based on processed plant oils instead of water, with a watery texture which reminds me of the sprays from French brands Laboratoires de Biarritz Algamaris or Acorelle. On the skin the sprays feel smooth and not oily, the finish is glowy and the product comfort is very pleasant. The Sunspray SPF 30 Sensitive has a light whitening effect while the lightly tinted Sunspray SPF 50 doesn’t whiten the skin at all. The shade should be suitable for light to medium dark skin tones.
The UV filter is titanium dioxide and antioxidant ingredients like oryzanol, raspberry seed oil or – in the case of the Sunspray SPF 50 – Q10. The spray has a light, sweet fragrance which I find very pleasant. The products offer UVA and UVB protection; certified organic by Cosmebio/Ecocert; no nano particles. Vegan. Contains 100ml in a tube which is equipped with an atomiser top. Price: 24.90 Euro resp. 29.90 Euro. Available in organic supermarkets or online, for example at Naturdrogerie.
My tip: You can use the sprays for both face and body. I spray the product into my hands first and then distribute the liquid on the skin. A very pleasant, light but non-hydrating texture – I wear a serum underneath.
Sun Sprays from Ey!
An unexpected surprise at Vivaness this year: Eco Cosmetics‘ new younger sun care sub-brand Ey! offers sun protection sprays at a lower price than the usual Eco Cosmetics products. The company says that the oil ingredients used in the Ey! sprays are more affordable than the ingredients in Eco Cosmetics‘ sun sprays – the Ey! products do not contain pomegranate or raspberry oils, for example. The Sun Sprays from Ey! are based on processed plant oils and therefore have the typical almost silicone-like texture (which, of course, does not contain silicone). The UV filters are titanium dioxide and antioxidant oryzanol. The sprays have a summery-sweet fragrance and the very liquid texture feels very pleasant on the skin; with a glowy finish. The Eco Cosmetics sprays I mentioned above maybe feel a little bit lighter on the skin.
The Sun Spray SPF 30 has a light whitening effect, the whitening factor of the Sun Spray SPF 50 is light to medium. UVA and UVB protection. Certified organic by Cosmebio/Ecocert. No nano particles; vegan. Contains 100ml in a tube which comes with an atomiser top. Price: 17.90 Euro resp. 18.90 Euro. Availability: at Vivaness the product manager told me that the Ey! range will also be sold in drugstores, in addition to the usual organic supermarkets. The products are already available in-store or online, for example at Naturdrogerie or najoba.
My tip: A good choice for younger consumers and for people who like summery sweet sun care fragrances.
CC Cream SPF 30 from Eco Cosmetics
And another novelty from Eco Cosmetics! I was impatient to try out the CC Creams because I had already seen the clever airless dispenser packaging at Vivaness: You stroke the raised bump on the surface of the lid and the CC Cream is then dispensed from a small opening. The CC Creams from Eco Cosmetics are available as SPF 30 and SPF 50, each product comes in a lighter and a darker shade. The UV filters are titanium dioxide and a bit of zinc oxide plus antioxidants derived from grape seeds and oryzanol as well as karanja oil. The formula also includes Q10 and hyaluronic acid. The emulsion is based on water and processed oils so the texture is light – the product almost feels like a fluid. Because it is lightly tinted the whitening factor of the CC Cream SPF 30 is practically non-existent. However, the lighter CC Cream shade isn’t particularly light, I’d recommend it for lighter to medium-toned complexions. Coverage is light and the finish is shiny; I need a mattifying powder on top. The product comfort is pleasant (I apply a hydrating serum underneath, nothing else) and the fragrance is a light tropically-floral fragrance. UVA and UVB protection, certified organic by Cosmebio/Ecocert. No nano particles. Vegan. Contains 60ml in an airless jar. Price: 35.50 Euro. Availability: in organic supermarkets or online, for example at Naturdrogerie.
My tip: This is a good everyday sun protection product which combines colour and hydration with a high SPF. The airless pack, made from plastic, protects the antioxidant ingredients in the product formula well.
Mineral Sun Milk and Sun Cream from Weleda
Many years ago Weleda offered sun protection but the products were then taken off the market. Now the sun creams have been reformulated and are available again! However, the four new Edelweiss sun care products do not resemble Weleda‘s Japan-made Sun Cream SPF 33 – the German product formulas of the two sun creams and two sun milks have a different composition of ingredients. The Edelweiss Sun Milk Sensitive SPF 30 is non-scented and was especially developed for babies and children. The Edelweiss Sun Cream Face SPF 30, on the other hand, has the typically floral-medicinal Weleda fragrance. The sun cream for the face has a non-oily and comparatively liquid texture, the product comfort is pleasant because the cream is not too sticky. The Sensitive Sun Milk, however, is richer and the texture is thicker and more pasty although the product comfort is still ok; the finish is glowy. Both products leave a perceptibly whitish cast on the skin: the whitening factor of the face cream is medium, the sun milk‘s whitening factor is medium to strong.
In all products the UV filter is titanium dioxide combined with antioxidant and cell-protecting edelweiss extract. UVA and UVB protection. Certified organic by Natrue. No nano particles. Should be vegan (no seal). Contains 50ml resp. 150ml, packaged in tubes. Price: 13.99 Euro resp. 19.95 Euro. Availability: in drugstores, pharmacies, organic supermarkets or online, for example through najoba.
My tip: Suitable for babies and children because the products are waterproof. For use in the office or on the streets the sun creams are too whitening for my taste. By the way, Weleda is aware of the strong whitening factor or the products and the company has decided to handle this proactively: the packaging features the claim „you can see natural sun protection“.
Sunscreen Fluid SPF 30 from Officina Naturae
After I had visited the booth of Italian beauty brand Officina Naturae at Vivaness trade show I bought their Sunscreen Fluid SPF 30. The texture feels like a richer fluid which, however, is easy to distribute on the skin. The product comfort is pleasant to ok (it doesn’t feel super light on the skin), with a glowy finish and a subtle herbal-oily fragrance (although the product doesn’t include any fragrance ingredients). The whitening factor is light; the UV filters are zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, the second ingredient in the INCI declaration is karanja oil and the formula includes further antioxidant and soothing plant ingredients. Shake well before use! UVA and UVB protection, certified organic by ICEA. No nano particles. Vegan. Contains 125ml in a tube. Price: 18.49 Euro. Availability: Online, for example through Ecco Verde.
My tip: Two mineral sun filters plus a range of antioxidants in a richer fluid texture with low whitening and a fragrance-free product formula – from Bella Italia!
Sun Spray SPF 30 from Biosolis
Belgian brand Biosolis presented two reformulated sun protection products at this year’s Vivaness: The Sun Spray SPF 30 and the Anti-Aging Face Cream SPF 30. I wrote about the Face Cream SPF 30 from Biosolis four years ago on Beautyjagd; this product has now been relaunched with an additional DNA Protector complex (cell-protecting brown algae extract). The pale yellow-tinted product has a creamy texture and is easy to distribute on the skin; it feels a little oilier and richer so the product comfort is pleasant to ok. The whitening factor, on the other hand, is light to medium; probably because of the yellow tint. The product formula is based on aloe vera, the UV filters are zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. – The Sun Spray SPF 30 has a liquid texture which is tinted pale yellow. The whitening factor seems lower than the whitening effect of the face cream (I’d say it is light); the spray is pleasant and non-sticky on the skin although the texture feels a little richer on the skin (I apply a moisturising serum underneath). The spray is based on rape seed oil and has a light, fresh herbal fragrance. The sun filter is titanium dioxide and zinc oxide as well as antioxidant karanja oil. Shake well before use! Offers UVA and UVB protection, certified organic by Ecocert. No nano particles. Vegan. Contains 50ml in a tube resp. 100ml with an atomiser button. Availability: At Naturshop outlets of the Müller drugstore chain, in organic supermarkets or online (I found the relaunched Spray SPF 30 on Green Glam; haven’t been able to track down the relaunched face cream yet).
My tip: An all-rounder with titanium dioxide, zinc oxide and karanja oil for skin that needs lipids; the additional cell-protecting ingredient in the face cream is interesting.
Sun Milk SPF 30 from Terra Naturi
The German drugstore retailers‘ certified organic own label brands Alverde (DM) and Alterra (Rossmann) have been offering sun care for years. Now the number three in the market, the Müller chain’s Terra Naturi, has also launched sun protection in its product portfolio. I bought the Sun Milk SPF 30 which has a creamy to paste-like texture. The strong whitening factor at the beginning began to disappear once I had worked the product into my skin (resulting in medium whitening; you could probably achieve a lower whitening effect by using less product). Product comfort is quite ok to pleasant, the finish is, of course, glowy (less shine than most other sun creams) and the subtle scent reminded me of bubblegum (a rather unusual fragrance for an organic product. Not bad!). The UV filters are zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. No nano particles; UVA and UVB protection. Certified organic by Natrue. Contains 200ml. Price: 5.99 Euro. Availability: in all outlets of the Müller chain.
My tip: The most affordable sun milk in this line-up and the product is quite good! A good alternative to the sun care products from Alterra and Alverde.
Sun Cream SPF 50 and Sun Pact SPF 50 Natural Expression from Whamisa
I already saw Korean beauty brand Whamisa’s new sun protection products at Cosmoprof Asia last autumn. Now the products have finally come to Germany: The Organic Flowers Sun Cream SPF 50+ in a tube and the Organic Flowers Sun Pact SPF 50+ in a jar (both Sun Pacts are available in a tinted and non-tinted version). The products have a similar formulation, they are based on aloe maculata extract, the UV filter is zinc oxide. The formula also includes a whole range of antioxidant fermented plant extracts and rice extract. The Sun Cream with its very high SPF 50+ has a creamy protective but non-oily texture which leaves a glowy finish. Like a Korean cushion foundation the Sun Pact Natural Expression is packaged in a jar with lid; the fluid is tinted a light pink (the texture is lighter than the sun cream) and is dispensed from the small holes in the inner lid. You apply it with a sponge applicator which is included. Don’t worry, the rosé tint will not turn your complexion pink, instead it gently evens out the skin tone.
The whitening factor in both products is low (the Sun Pact has even less whitening) which is impressive considering the high SPF. The finish is glowy to shimmering and the product comfort is pleasant (the Sun Pact feels very pleasant). The product fragrance comes from rosewood and peppermint essential oils but the scent is barely perceptible. Offers UVA and UVB protection. Certified organic by Cosmos/BDIH. No nano particles. Vegan (I think). Contains 60ml in a tube resp. 16ml in the jar. Price: 36.00 Euro for the Sun Pact, 35.00 Euro for the Sun Cream. Availability in Germany: Naturdrogerie or whamisa.de .
My tip: For K-Beauty fans and everyone who prefers to apply their sun protection with an applicator (like a light foundation) – and who want very high sun protection combined with a low whitening factor.
Fresh Sunscreen LSF 20 from Ringana
Four years ago I introduced the Fresh Sunscreen SPF 20 from Austrian organic beauty brand Ringana on the blog (the product had a different name back then). Ringana has now reformulated and relaunched the Fresh Sunscreen so I decided to include it in this overview. The fluid creamy sun cream is packaged in a pump dispenser and is based on water, followed by the UV filter zinc oxide plus various antioxidant and soothing plant based extracts such as karanja oil or bisabolol. The Sunscreen is fragrance-free, the whitening factor is light and the finish glowy. Product comfort is pleasant to very pleasant and not sticky. UVA and UVB protection, no nano particles. Not certified organic but the ingredients could easily be certified. Contains 125ml. Price: Around 38.00 Euro. Availability: Only through the Ringana partner store system and online through the brand’s webshop.
My tip: The Sunscreen feels pleasant on the face but „only“ offers SPF 20 (which, however, should be enough for most everyday outdoor situations).
Carrot Tinted Face Sunscreen Cream SPF 30 from Fitocose
Fitocose is one of my more recent discoveries from Italy; I already wrote about the organic beauty pioneer in this article here. Directly afterwards I ordered two sun protection creams from Fitocose – not only do the products sound interesting but the price-performance ration of this brand is really good. The Carrot Tinted Face Sunscreen Cream SPF 30 is packaged in an airless pump dispenser and has a light tint. If your skin tone matches the product colour the whitening factor is almost zero. Coverage is light to medium with a satinised to glowy finish (more matte than, for example, the CC Cream from Eco Cosmetics). Feels pleasant to very pleasant on the skin; not sticky or oily, with a drier texture that makes this product a good choice if you have oily skin – if you have dry patches, however, these will be more obvious when you wear the cream (it is also more difficult to distribute the cream on drier skin). The Sunscreen is fragrance-free. The formula is based on water and sunflower oil-macerated carrot extract which has an antioxidant effect. The UV filter is titanium dioxide. Offers UVA and UVB protection. No nano particles in the INCI declaration (the Sun Lotion, however, lists nano ingredients). Certified organic by AIAB. Contains 50ml. Price: Around 13.00 Euro. Availability: At the moment only online through Ecco Verde.
My tip: The floral-scented Sun Lotion from Fitocose is more affordable than the cream but the texture isn’t really that much lighter than the sun cream; with light whitening. The Carrot Tinted Face Sunscreen Cream SP 30 is my recommendation for oily skin!
Sun Lotion LSF 30 from Tea Natura
Italian brand Tea Natura recently relaunched its sun protection product portfolio. Three years ago I introduced Tea Natura‘s Sun Cream with Tiaré Scent on the blog – at that time, however, the brand only listed an approximate sun protection filter. I was curious about the new products and ordered the Sun Lotion SPF 30 from Tea Natura. The product fragrance is still intensive and a little bit too sweetish and heavy for my taste (still, it does smell rather Italian: the scent is described as a blend of orange, vanilla and tiaré). Shake well before use! The fluid is easy to distribute on the skin and feels pliable on the skin – the product is based on processed oils instead of water. Product comfort is pleasant but with a medium whitening factor which means that it is visible on my skin. The UV filters are titanium dioxide and zinc oxide; buriti oil has an antioxidant effect. UVA and UVB protection, no nano particles. Certification: Biodizionario approved. Contains 100ml. Price: Around 19.00 Euro at Ecco Verde.
My tip: Scented sun protection with a soft water-free texture and moderate whitening. The UV filters are titanium dioxide and zinc oxide.
Sun protection from cobicos, Mádara and Alteya Organics
I also want to include three sun protection products that I already presented on Beautyjagd this year: the Sunny Day Cream from cobicos with SPF 15 (good as an everyday product – the Sunny Day Cream has a hydrating texture with lots of antioxidants and titanium dioxide as UV filter). – I recently bought the Rose Face Age Defense Sunscreen SPF 30 from Alteya Organics (a rosé-tinted fluid with zinc oxide as a UV filter) in an organic beauty store here in Nuremberg. – I already mentioned the Anti-Pollution City CC Cream from Mádara which is available in two shades (I use Light Beige). The City Cream combines SPF 15 (zinc oxide and titanium dioxide) with light to medium coverage.
To sum up: Mádara has done a very good job with its new sun protection products; I can recommend all three of them. Eco Cosmetics and its younger sister brand Ey! is finally offering sun sprays with a lighter texture. If you’re looking for ultra high SPF50+ protection with little whitening, check out Whamisa. The Terra Naturi sun milk is pretty good too, especially when you consider the low product price. If you have oily skin you might want to check out the Face Sunscreen SPF30 from Fitocose. And definitely have a look at the sun protection posts from the last few years; most of the products are still available now – and there are some excellent options, for example Laboratoires de Biarritz Algamaris or Kypris!
- Organic Sun Care 2012
- Organic Sun Care 2013
- Organic Sun Care 2014
- Organic Sun Care 2015
- Organic Sun Care 2016
- Organic Sun Care 2017
[Click here for all INCIs and the original German article Mineralischer Sonnenschutz 8: Naturkosmetik im Test 2018]