If it's lightweight, non-greasy sun protection you seek, Anthelios AOX Daily Antioxidant Serum Broad Spectrum SPF 50 fits the bill with a fragrance-free formula ideal for normal to combination/oily skin. Our only bone to pick is that for a product claiming to be loaded with antioxidants, this pricey (for the drugstore) formula is a bit more bare bones than we'd expect. Still, there's a lot to love…
The thin, lotion-like texture offers an excellent compromise for combination skin and absorbs down into a natural, shine-free finish (oily skin types rejoice!). For those of you who aren't a fan of the white cast of mineral sunscreens, the synthetic broad-spectrum sun protection blends imperceptibly over skin.
So why doesn't this earn our highest rating? While this "serum" contains a notable amount of vitamin E (tocopherol), it's disappointing that the other antioxidants are included in such minute concentrations, especially given that this is advertised as a "high-potent antioxidant complex." We wish La-Roche-Posay would have included more, but we'll take any we can get since the research is clear that combining antioxidants with sunscreen gives skin a significant environmental boost and helps to further offset the damaging effects of UV light.
Speaking of antioxidants, the pump bottle packaging is a nice touch to help keep the delicate air/light-sensitive ingredients stable. Although it's hard to tell if the bottle is transparent or not, we took ours apart to confirm that the inside is indeed coated to help prevent light from getting in. See what we do to make sure you're getting all the details?
As far as the claim that you'll see improvement in the appearance of dark spots goes, don't get your hopes up there. This formula lacks the skin-lightening ingredients needed to do that, but at least the sun protection will help prevent sun-damaged induced dark spots from getting worse.
All in all, while this may not be the most state-of-the-art antioxidant formula out there, it's not a bad one, either. If you have combination/oily skin the light texture alone may win you over, and the broad-spectrum sun protection certainly doesn't hurt. Reason enough to buy? We'll let you be the judge.
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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