Product Review: Avene High Protection Cream SPF 30

Name: High Protection Cream SPF 30
Brand: Avene
Size: 50ml
Price: €17,00

From the packaging:
Rich in Eau Thermale d’Avene, which has soothing properties, the High Protection Cream SPF30 is designed for the sensitive and dry face skin. Therefore, it is rich, invisible and not greasy, it applies easily and absorbs rapidly. It ensures a broad spectrum protection from UVA and UVB rays.

What I liked:
– protects from both UVA and UVB rays
– easy to spread
– suitable for those with very dry skin
– the packaging

What I didn’t like:
– rich texture is very greasy and takes ages to absorb
– unless you have very dry skin, this will feel like a sticky mess on your face
– leaves a white cast on skin

Let me start by telling you that I never meant to buy this sunscreen. For one thing, this is designed for dry skin while mine is combination. So, why did I buy it? Well, a series of unfortunate coincidences: my bottle of Aveeno sunscreen had almost run out and I didn’t have time to go to the pharmacy to get another one, so my mum who had to go buy some eye drops for my gran offered to get it for me. Well, she must have misunderstood the name of the brand because she came home with Avene High Protection Cream SPF30.

Not wanting it to go to waste (we have awful return policies here in Italy), I tried it on anyway. But as it turns out, unless you have seriously dry and dehydrated skin, this white cream is completely unwearable! The texture is very thick and so greasy! Usually I can put up with sunscreens that are slightly greasy if they keep me well protected from the sun as I feel like the inconvenience is worth it, but this is the greasiest thing I have ever come across!

Even if I apply the thinnest layer on my face (which by the way isn’t enough to protect your skin against the sun, especially not in the hot summer months), my skin feels like a greasy and sticky mess for the rest of the day and I can’t wait to wash it all off my face. And that’s why, even though I usually wait a month before reviewing sunscreens and skincare products, I had to stop using this after a week. It was just unbearable! Oh, and it leaves a white cast on skin, but mine is already so pale it’s not really a problem for me.

It’s such a shame about the greasy texture cos the sunscreen is well formulated and offers broad-spectrum protection against both UVA and UVB rays, thus preventing sunburn and premature aging. The main ingredients are Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate (or Octinoxate), a sunscreen agent that protects against UVB rays and sunburn, Bis-ethylexyloxyphenol Methoxyphenyl Triazine and Methylene Bis-Benzotriazolyl Tetramethylbutylphenol (what a mouthful, huh?), both of which can be included in sunscreens products in Europe to absorb both UVA and UVB rays. In much lower concentrations, Titanium Dioxide and Zinc Oxide, two physical blockers that protect against both UVA and UVB rays as well, are present too.

Thanks to all these ingredients, in the week I used this (it was in the summer so this review is long overdue, sorry!), my skin was well-protected and I didn’t sunburn or anything. Its performance is excellent, apart from the horrible texture. I’ve also heard people complain that this sunscreen caused them to breakout, but that didn’t happen to me. Although that could be because I didn’t use this product long enough!

Available at: pharmacies

I gave Avene High Protection Cream SPF 30 a 3 rating because this sunscreen promises to offer broad spectrum protection against UVA and UVB rays, sunburn and the other damaging effects of the sun, and it actually delivers. Unfortunately, it also promises to have an invisible, not-greasy texture that absorbs rapidly and that’s where it miserably fails. The consistency is so thick and greasy that it makes your face a sticky mess for the entire day! And it never seems to absorb! I’d only recommend it to those with seriously dry skin as such a rich texture may benefit them. Anyone else, avoid!

Rating: 3/5

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  1. Lisi says

    I tested the avene sunscreen as well – I wouldn’t have a problem with the white cast, but: I asked Avene on their website contact if I could wear make up over it and they said NO, it would weaken its performance in UVA and UVB protection!

    • beautifulwithbrains says

      Lisi, that sounds weird to me. Most people wear makeup on top of sunscreen and I’ve never heard that by doing so the protection they offer is weakened. Did they explain why that is? I actually did wear makeup over it but that just made my face even greasier so I stopped.

  2. says

    Yikes it sounds disgusting! LOL! I haaaaaaate greasy stuff with a passion!! Even the Cleanance version, which is supposed to be for acne prone skin, is greasy and sticky! I want to try La Roche Posay Anthelios next, a couple of girls have told me on my blog that it’s super light and it not greasy or sticky at all !!!
    Stavroula Plag´s last blog post ..Random Tip of the Day 04112010My Profile

    • beautifulwithbrains says

      Stavroula, it is horrible! Those with oily skin needs to stay far, far, far away from it!

      I’ve heard positive things about La Rochay Posay Anthelios but haven’t tried it because it contains Alcohol Denat. Sadly most sunscreens do as alcohol makes the consistency really light and not greasy but it can also be irritating and drying. I guess the perfect sunscreen hasn’t been invented yet but if one has really oily skin then using a product with alcohol may be worth it. :)

  3. Giorgia says

    I had the same problem, but instead of the SPF 30 I used the SPF 50, plus the smell of the cream is too strong for my tastes, I would like to try La Roche Posey Anthelios too I read good reviews about it.

    • beautifulwithbrains says

      Giorgia, it’s a shame to hear that the other products in this range still have the same problem. They do should something about the texture cos unless one has really dehydrated skin, it’s just unwearable! I heard La Roche Posey Anthelios works well too but I don’t really like products with alcohol that much. :(

    • beautifulwithbrains says

      Trisha, this sunscren never absorbs, it’s a nightmare. I have an oily t-zone but my cheeks are normal to dry and it felt so greasy and uncomfortable! It’s a shame really cos it provides broad spectrum protection.

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