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I’ve been looking for a lighter sunblock to replace my thicker Neutrogena Dry-Touch Sunblock (review here), so when I was given the Biore UV AQUA Rich Sunblock with SPF50+ to try, I thought, “Hey, maybe this could be it!”. Read on to find out:

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Unlike my Neutrogena staple, Biore’s version is less thick, less creamy and has a cooling, water-like effect on the skin. I have on occasion substituted this for my moisturizer just to see if it was moisturizing enough (heck, with a name like AQUA Rich Water Essence, why not?) and it was quite comfortable on my skin, on especially hot days when I didn’t want too many layers. It was moisturizing enough but I wouldn’t recommend using this as a substitute in the long run, as I’m not sure if it’s non-comedogenic, unlike the Neutrogena sunblock.

While it was definitely non-greasy and non-sticky, oil control properties are almost non-existent so if you have oily skin, you’ll get shiny in a few hours.

A plus point, however is that this sunblock protects against both UVA and UVB rays. SPF ratings refer to protection levels from UVB rays (which cause sunburns), whereas PA refers to protection levels from UVA rays (which cause long-term skin damage, such as wrinkles and dark spots). The higher the SPF ratings and the more pluses behind the PA ratings, the higher the protection levels. So, with a rating of SPF50+ and PA+++, Biore’s UV AQUA indicates high protection from UVA and UVB rays.

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I didn’t experience any whitening with this product, but it has a very pleasant fragrance that wasn’t too overpowering.

When I looked at the ingredients list, after water, the next ingredient is ethylhexyl methoxycinnamate, which is water insoluble. This is the active ingredient in sunscreen protection and absorbs both UVA and UVB rays. It can also reduce the appearance of scars, but I’m a bit wary of how this works with the next ingredient, alcohol. So you better make sure you use a very good makeup remover or cleanser because this is not easily removable and may lead to clogged pores or other problems.

Right after this is alcohol, the third on the list, and alcohol tends to be quite drying, thus resulting in increased sebum production. With scar/mark formations, the best way to deal with them besides having scar reducers is to ensure optimal hydration of the skin, so in a way, I find that mixing high amounts of alcohol with the blocker above kind of cancels each other out? I also found it odd that xylitol was on the list, 7th from the top, which is a sugar alcohol sweetener. Fragrance is mid-way up the list, which can be an irritant, and sodium hyaluronate, which is the moisturizing agent, is very low down the list (probably less than 1% of the whole lot).

This retails for RM32.90 in major pharmacies, and while it appeared to be quite a good product, I don’t think I’ll be buying this due to the amount of alcohol in this product. Looks like I’ll still need to hunt for a lightweight, doesn’t-break-the-bank sunscreen product!

Disclaimer: This product was provided to us for review purposes. We strive to be as honest and objective in our reviews as much as possible.

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3 thoughts on “Review: Biore UV AQUA Rich Watery Essence Sunblock SPF50+/PA+++

  1. oops, I never really quite bother with the ingredient list, though I know alcohol level is usually quite high on the list for Biore’s product. So far I never had much problem using them, except that in drier climates I’d get a bit of a dry skin, but our weather here, just perfect!

    Didn’t like Neutrogena, felt that it’s a bit too thick for my liking.

    • I’m starting to not like my Neutrogena one as well. I discovered it has beeswax and it’s potentially pore-clogging. Yikes!

      • i only use the neutrogena on body! it feels terribly thick on my face…. haha, i am not bothered by the ingredients! am using this one!

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