It’s interesting that La Roche-Posay’s Anthelios 60 sunscreens do not contain Mexoryl SX (ecamsule), the UVA-protecting active ingredient patented by their parent company L’Oreal. Instead, Anthelios 60 contains avobenzone for UVA protection. The big thing with this lightweight, matte-finish lotion is the claim that it contains powerful antioxidants. It does contain antioxidants, but only two—vitamin E and Cassia alata leaf—and they are barely present so they aren’t particularly powerful or potent anyway.
On the plus side, this sunscreen provides broad-spectrum protection and has a texture those with normal to very oily skin will appreciate. In fact, if you don't mind that shortcoming, this is a good option to consider when used on top of an antioxidant-rich serum to boost your skin's free-radical defense.
Had this formula not made much ado about its antioxidant load, it would have easily made our highest rating for a sunscreen. Unfortunately, we have to judge it in part based upon its marketing claims, and it doesn’t “walk the talk” when it comes to providing a superior antioxidant boost, and what antioxidants are present are at the end of the ingredient list.
Sunscreens That Lack Antioxidants: While this sunscreen goes the distance in terms of providing broad-spectrum sunscreen protection, a high SPF rating and unique aesthetics (making it one you’ll actually wear and apply liberally every day), it lacks a comprehensive array of added antioxidants. Research has demonstrated that antioxidants, when formulated into a broad-spectrum sunscreen formula, boost its effectiveness in defending your skin against UV and other environmental free radicals (Journal of Long Term Effects of Medical Implants, 2004 and Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, 2012).
Thus, if you decide to try this sunscreen, we would strongly recommend you layer it over a well-formulated antioxidant rich serum. Serums are available in water-light textures for oily or combination skin, or hydrating formulas for normal to dry skin. Wearing one under your sunscreen every day will pay dividends in defending your skin against free-radical damage and inflammation that destroy the skin’s ability to heal, remain healthy and firm over time (Journal of Pathology, 2007 and Dermatology Research and Practice, 2012).
Don’t have a favorite serum yet? Check out list of top recommended serums to find one that suits your skin type and concerns.
Anthelios 60 Melt-In Sunscreen Milk with Cell-Ox Shield is a synergistic combination of patented high efficacy sun filters and powerful anti-oxidants to further protect your skin. This fast absorbing, non-greasy milk provides SPF 60 and broad spectrum UVA/UVB protection with the breakthrough Cell-Ox Shield, to protect your skin, even at the cellular level. It's excellent for use outdoors and at the beach. The advanced UV filtering system of Anthelios 60 is a unique association of photostablized sunscreens for broad-spectrum and longer-lasting protection, with advanced efficiency against UVA rays. Anthelios 60 also uses a powerful anti-oxidant complex called Senna Alata, a tropical leaf extract known to defend skin cells.
Active: Avobenzone (3%), Homosalate (15%), Octisalate (5%), Octocrylene (5%), Oxybenzone (6%), Other: Water, Styrene/Acrylates Copolymer, Silica, Butyloctyl Salicylate, Cyclopentasiloxane, Glycerin, Alcohol Denatured, Poly C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate, Diethylhexyl Syringylidenemalonate, Polymethylsilsesquioxane, Caprylyl Methicone, Trisiloxane, Acrylates/Dimethicone Copolymer, PEG-100 Stearate, Glyceryl Stearate, Phenoxyethanol, Potassium Cetyl Phosphate, Dimethicone, Tocopheryl Acetate, Caprylyl Glycol, Methylparaben, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Chlorphenesin, Inulin Lauryl Carbamate, Triethanolamine, Ethylparaben, Xanthan Gum, Ethylhexylglycerin, Disodium EDTA, Cassia Alata Leaf Extract, Maltodextrin
La Roche-Posay At-A-Glance
L'Oreal-owned La Roche-Posay has a pharmaceutical lineage based in France, and the company speaks of their thermal spring water as the cornerstone of their commitment to dermatological skin care. In fact, the name La Roche-Posay comes from the French town that is the source of this water, which is said to be a rich in selenium. While selenium is an element that has potent antioxidant ability, it's unclear how much the water La Roche-Posay uses contains, since all water has to go through purification processes to be to used in cosmetic products.
That aside, this brand does have a number of standout products, including some good sunscreens and anti-aging treatments. Another positive: All of its skincare is packaged in containers that will keep beneficial products protected from light and air (no jar packaging here!). Unfortunately there are some missteps, namely that some otherwise-excellent products include potentially-irritating amounts of alcohol, fragrance, or other irritants. The line could also benefit from additional products that contain more state-of-the-art ingredients. Still, for a no-frills approach to serious skin care, there are some finds to be had!
For more information about La Roche-Posay, owned by L'Oreal, call (888) 577-5226 or visit www.laroche-posay.com.
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