As experimental as I get with my skincare, there is one category that I’m slavish to sticking to a product that works, and that is sunscreen. When I found the sunscreen of my dreams, I stuck with it. I keep backups because I’m afraid of running out, and I’m very happy with it.
But because I like exploring different products, I jumped at the chance to try some new sunscreen in the market, especially one that claims to be kind to corals and marine life. Quite often, the one time that people will be more diligent about using sunscreen will be when they head to the beach for some Vitamin Sea, and this brand claims that their sunscreen will not endanger marine life.
Algotherm is a French brand of skincare that isn’t widely available, from what I can tell. I’ve stumbled across one or two of their products over the years, and while I’d been interested to try more, the lack of access daunts me. Locally, they are sold through selected salons and personally, I’m not one to hunt down a salon just to try or buy a product. Besides, I’m put off because often, you’re given the hardsell treatment.
Yet, when I was given the opportunity to try the Algotherm Algosun Age Protect Sun Cream and Sun Lotion (without having to traipse off to a salon – whew!), I must say that I was pretty impressed.
The Algotherm Algosun range claims to be mineral sunscreen, using titanium dioxide and zinc oxide as their UV blockers, and they are broad-spectrum sunscreens protecting against UVA and UVB rays. In addition to protecting the skin from sun damage, which makes skin age more quickly, the formula is supposed to be friendly to marine life so it isn’t toxic when you wear this and go into the sea.
There are 2 formula available – Sun Cream SPF50+ and Sun Lotion SPF30.
Algotherm Algosun Age Protect Sun Cream SPF50+ – RM190.80/ 50ml
I picked this one to try first, as based on my personal preference, I wear SPF50 all the time, rain or shine. No matter what anyone says, I don’t believe that SPF30 is sufficient when you’re dealing with our sort of scorching sun.
As it says it is a Sun Cream I expected the texture to be fairly creamy and thick, and it is. I haven’t used a cream based sunscreen for a while so it took some getting used to. The first impression I had was that it was a little too thick, but after a while, I got used to it. If you have drier skin or are in cold, dry weather, or are by the beach and don’t care that your skin may look greasy then I think this is the better option. For everyday, in our tropical heat, it can feel a little too much and cause makeup to slide. If you have oily skin, this is NOT for you.
The other thing I noticed was how the Sun Cream has a bit of tint to it. It goes on skin and leaves a bit of a whitish cast on the skin. This, I attribute to the titanium dioxide and zinc oxide. In many ways, this is a typical texture of a mineral sunscreen – thick and leaves a bit of a cast on skin. I did not find it drying, which was a boon, and it did not break me out.
In terms of protection, how can we really tell? 😛 I don’t turn too red in the sun, but it will then start to shine, so it can cause a bit of havoc if you’re wearing the wrong makeup for the day. Because it’s thick, people might end up using less product that they should to avoid the thick texture and cast, and that might then diminish the efficacy.
While I’ll use it, and sometimes, quite like it (it makes a very nice emollient base for more drying foundation) I don’t see myself putting it on any pedestal. I’d revert to my usual sunscreen in a heartbeat simply because the texture agrees better with me.
Algotherm Algosun Age Protect Sun Cream (left) Sun Lotion (right)
Algotherm Algosun Age Protect Sun Lotion SPF30 – RM233.20 / 100ml
The Sun Lotion is a lighter textured version of the Sun Cream with a lower SPF30. It isn’t terribly light though. It still feels quite creamy but it feels much lighter on the skin as compared to the Sun Cream so it is more pleasing to use and will therefore be the one that appeals to most people. You must shake it up first, before squirting into your palm, but it doesn’t quite feel like the usual runny texture of Japanese sunscreen. This feels more emollient and doesn’t have a dry-touch finish. If you compare it to Japanese brand sunscreens, you’d run screaming in the opposite direction because this feels like cake batter next to Japanese sunscreen! My only problem is with the SPF30 which I feel is insufficient for me (opinions vary and this is mine). If however, you feel that SPF30 is good enough, then this one is decent because it’s easy to use not only on face, but on body as well.
You can see how the texture is more runny, although it too leaves a bit of a white cast on the skin which again isn’t very surprising in a mineral sunscreen. Because of the texture, I use it on my body for the day, since I have it.
IN A NUTSHELL
The Algotherm Algosun Age Protect Sun Cream SPF50+ and Sun Lotion SPF30 are both mineral sunscreens with titanium dioxide and zinc oxide as their UV blockers, although no mention is made of their percentage. The Sun Cream has a thicker texture, while the Sun Lotion has a lighter texture, but both leave a bit of a white cast on skin and do not dry down to a powder finish, so shine is quite prevalent. This should not bother you if you’re by the sea, but in a tropical climate where it’s hot all the time, it can cause havoc with your makeup. I experienced no breakouts, and while I thought they were both decent enough products, I wasn’t too smitten. The lack of availability options bug me as well.
PROS: Not drying, Mineral sunscreen broad-spectrum formula, Different formula suitable for different skin types, High SPF, Easy to use
CONS: Hard to find, Slight white cast on skin, Can make skin look oily, Slight fragrance, Pricey
WHO WILL LIKE THIS: Anyone who wants a marine friendly sunscreen formula, Anyone who prefers using mineral sunscreen
PRICE: Sun Cream RM190.80/50ml Sun Lotion RM233.20/100ml
AVAILABILITY: Selected Algotherm salons (Find out from their facebook page)
For those interested, here are the ingredient lists for both the Algosun Sun Cream and Sun Lotion.
Have you tried this sunscreen or any other products from Algotherm?
I used a facial wash once that I quite liked but for some reason I just didn’t feel sufficiently driven to blog about it, due primarily to the price and availability. Salon brands tend to be expensive and elusive and that does bug me because sometimes, they are pretty good stuff! Now, about Algotherm – what have you tried? 🙂