Although I wear sunblock on my face all year ’round, I’m especially conscious of the need for protection on sunny summer days. I recently tried out a new product, Bare Minerals’ Advanced Protection SPF 20 Moisturizer for Combination Skin, which boasts a “proprietary ActiveSoil Complex” as well as hydration and a mineral-based sun shield.
I’m not much of a “mineral makeup” person, so I’m not an expert on the Bare Minerals brand, but combination moisturizer/sunblock products always interest me. I found a few things to like about Bare Minerals Advanced Protection: the inclusion of titanium dioxide and zinc oxide, a non-greasy lotion texture, and practical but visually appealing package design. I applied this product to my freshly cleaned face in the morning and I found that it absorbed easily and invisibly, provided a smooth base for my makeup, and seemed to lessen the shine that usually develops in my “t-zone” throughout the day.
Those are the “pros” in my testing of Advanced Protection SPF 20 Moisturizer. However, there were also a few “cons.” As you can see on the label below , this product contains relatively low amounts of titanium dioxide and zinc oxide (5%) and zinc oxide (3%)—much less than some other facial sunblocks on the market, and less sun protection than I need if I’m going to be outside for any length of time. Second, although the hydrating ingredients (both natural and synthetic) gave my skin just enough moisture for a summer day, they wouldn’t suffice for cooler or drier weather.
In addition to lacking strong sun protection or adequate year-round moisturization, Advanced Protection SPF Moisturizer has an odd, chalky-earthy smell—and I usually like fragrances blended from essential oils and so on, but this one seems like a fake attempt to copy a natural scent. Lastly, it gave me some minor break-outs after a few days’ use. I’m blaming the inclusion of certain silicones, which make the lotion apply so smoothly and last well, but have a tendency to clog my pores.
This formula does include tea extracts, which are known for their antioxidant properties, but the “soil minerals” appear so low down in the ingredients list that they can’t be having much of an effect, whatever they are.
In the end, I’ll stick with my tried-and-true Pratima Neem Rose Sunscreen (over moisturizer) and 100% Pure Pomegranate Antioxidant Hydration. I guess I won’t be turning into a Bare Minerals customer after all, but at least I gave this brand a try, right?
Disclaimer: I received this trial-size product as a Beauty Insider free sample at Sephora.
Images: top image via Corbis; product photos by Tinsel Creation.