It takes me a while to write up full sunscreen reviews sometimes, so I thought I’d share the sunscreen spreadsheet that I use to keep track of products I’ve been trying with you guys! When I have a few sunscreens that seem to make sense together I’ll put them into a full review, but I find that this spreadsheet is still really handy for me to refer to.
A few notes on the sunscreen spreadsheet
This spreadsheet only includes products I’ve personally tried on my face. Keep in mind that my skin’s needs probably aren’t the same as yours, and the same sunscreens might not be available to you – I go through how to work out your skin type and conditions, and how to pick a sunscreen in The Lab Muffin Guide to Basic Skincare.
My personal priorities in a sunscreen:
- High UVA protection: Australia doesn’t allow brands to show their exact UVAPF values (only “broad spectrum” is allowed), so I usually just look at the filters to try to gauge this. I prefer the newer filters (Tinosorb S & M, Mexoryl ingredients, Uvinul A Plus).
- White cast: Needs to be minimal. My skin is NC20 for reference.
- Ease of application: It has to feel nice on my skin.
- Eye comfort: I need to apply sunscreen near my eyes since that’s where I can see the wrinkles gathering. My eyes are pretty hardy thanks to years of wearing contact lenses, but they’ll still water a bit with some sunscreens.
Pricing: To make the prices fairer, I’m using the price for the largest pack size under 100 g or 100 mL.
Italicised means it isn’t sold officially in Australia, so the price is an approximated conversion. Exchange rate used is 1 USD = 1.30 AUD. Note that Australia has an “Australia tax”, which is where everything is marked up a bit, so if I used a converted overseas price for the other products they would probably also be cheaper, so italicised prices are a bit lower than usual.
UVAPF: I haven’t included any non-verified (i.e. legally publicised) UVAPF ratings. I know a lot of sunscreen spreadsheets quote the value that the BASF sunscreen calculator puts out, but it doesn’t give accurate estimates since sunscreening power depends on so much more than just the percentages of active ingredients.
Ingredients: I’ve included filter percentages where they’re available. It seems like a lot of Asian sunscreens don’t need to include percentages. I’ve highlighted products with newer photostable UVA filters in green. I’ve used the shortest, most commonly recognised name for each filter, based on my highly subjective judgement. (There are a few common naming conventions – like INCI, INN, and AAN – but I went for ease of navigation in my spreadsheet rather than consistency.)
International differences in sunscreen labelling: The sunscreens are generally the Australian versions. If your sunscreen has the same percentages of filters, then it’s probably the same one – it’s really unlikely that a multinational company will reformulate a sunscreen just for the Australian market.
Also note that sometimes there are changes to SPF labelling for sunscreens sold in Australia, for two reasons. Firstly, the Australian sunscreen system simplifies SPF ratings into a few brackets – 4, 6, 8, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 40, 50 and 50+ (which means 60 or above) – so the rating will need to be rounded down to the appropriate number. Australia also has stricter requirements (TGA-approved manufacturing facilities (it’s rare for smaller overseas brands to be approved in Australia) and UVAPF ≥ 1/3 SPF for broad spectrum, which is required for higher SPF ratings). This means that sometimes the label will be downgraded to comply with Australian regulations. There are also sometimes name changes for the different markets. For example, Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Liquid Daily Sunscreen SPF 70 is sold as Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Fluid SPF 50 in Australia, and Paula’s Choice Resist Skin Restoring Moisturiser is SPF 50 in the US but SPF 15 in Australia.
Related post: What’s the deal with Australian sunscreen?
Sunscreen Mini-Review Spreadsheet
[google-drive-embed url=”https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/14vzFmnE6f1Uy5X1DuGkSOBnZ1pjoZJ6BvKGQXUdeuQI/preview?usp=drivesdk” title=”Lab Muffin’s Sunscreen Spreadsheet” icon=”https://drive-thirdparty.googleusercontent.com/16/type/application/vnd.google-apps.spreadsheet” width=”100%” height=”1200″ style=”embed”]
Some products were provided for review, but this is my honest opinion. This post also contains affiliate links – if you decide to click through and support Lab Muffin financially (at no extra cost to you), thank you! For more information, see Disclosure Policy.