Sephora Favorites: Sun Safety Kit Review
Every spring Sephora launches their Sun Safety Kit, a curated selection of sunscreens packaged in a cute bag to help you play safe in the sun.
My Subscription Addiction paid for this box. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)
About this Sephora Kit
The Box: Sephora Favorites: Sun Safety Kit
The Cost: $39.00
This set contains:
- 0.67 oz/ 20 mL Biossance’s SQUALANE + ZINC SHEER MINERAL SUNSCREEN SPF 30 PA+++
- 1 fl oz/ 30 mL CLINIQUE’s Pep-Start Daily UV Protector Broad Spectrum SPF 50
- 0.24 oz/ 7 mL Dermalogica®’s Dynamic Skin Recovery SPF 50
- 1.7 oz/ 50 mL Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare’s All-Physical Dark Spot Sun Defense Broad Spectrum SPF 50
- 0.13 oz/ 3.95 g HUM® Nutrition’s Here Comes The Sun
- 0.14 oz/ 4 mL Isle of Paradise’s Color Correcting Self-Tanning Drops
- 0.33 oz/ 10 mL Kate Somerville®’s DeliKate Recovery Serum
- 0.33 oz/ 10 mL Lancôme’s UV Expert Aquagel Defense Primer & Moisturizer SPF 50
- 0.8 oz/ 23 mL Murad®’s Essential-C Day Moisture Broad Spectrum SPF 30 PA+++
- 0.17 oz/ 5 mL Peter Thomas Roth’s Water Drench® Broad Spectrum SPF 45 Hyaluronic Cloud Moisturizer
- 0.34 oz/ 10 mL REN Clean Skincare’s Clean Screen Mineral SPF 30 Mattifying Face Sunscreen Broad Spectrum
- 0.23oz / 7 mL Shiseido’s Ultimate Sun Protector Lotion Broad Spectrum SPF 50+
- 0.5 oz/ 15 mL Supergoop!®’s Unseen Sunscreen SPF 40
Shipping: $6.50 if your purchase is under $50.00, free if you are VIB Rouge. This is also available in stores. Currently, you can also use code FREESHIP for free shipping (and I believe that stacks with GWP coupons!).
Sephora Favorites: Sun Safety Kit Review
Everything came packaged in this vibrant tie dye bag, with plenty of room inside for more goodies.
Scanning the QR code on the back of the packaging takes you to this page on the importance of sun safety! The sun safety tips on that website come from Memorial Sloan Kettering, and Sephora will donate $25 from the sale of each set t0 the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, with a minimum donation of $700,000.
Did you know that to get full protection from the sun, you should be applying about a ¼ teaspoon’s worth for your face and neck (and one full ounce for your entire body)? Since I use my measuring spoons for cooking and not skincare, I stick with the three fingers method to apply. I squirt a line of sunscreen down each of my three fingers, and that is enough to give me the full protection from the sun (okay, I used a measuring spoon here, but that was just to prove my point).
Biossance SQUALANE + ZINC SHEER MINERAL SUNSCREEN SPF 30 PA+++, 0.67 oz – Estimated Value $12.00 (buy the 1.7 oz version for $30.00)
This is a new release from Biossance, and I am happy that I am able to try it out through this set. It is formulated with their signature (sugarcane-derived) squalane oil, and has zinc oxide to provide the protection from the sun. It absorbed easily into my skin and didn’t leave a white cast, but nothing about it really sparked my desire to seek this out when the sample is done. I appreciate this generously-sized sample in this kit though!
CLINIQUE Pep-Start Daily UV Protector Broad Spectrum SPF 50, 1 oz – Retail Value $23.00
I wasn’t too excited over this sunscreen because the Clinique brand never really tickles my fancy, but I actually think this was my favorite find in the entire box! The sun protection comes from a 100% mineral formula (titanium dioxide and zinc oxide), but the texture is thinner so it blends into my skin really well. There is a slight tint to the formula, and that tint evened out my skin tone really nicely. This would wear well under makeup, but I wore this on a makeup-free day and still felt like I looked more put together just by wearing this sunscreen.
Dermalogica® Dynamic Skin Recovery SPF 50, 0.24 oz – Estimated Value $10.50 (buy the 1.7 oz version for $75.00)
I am actually just about finished with a full-size bottle of this sunscreen, so if you have any questions about it that this review doesn’t cover, please let me know in the comments below! I am a huge fan of this sunscreen; along with the great SPF 50 coverage, it is also really moisturizing to my dry skin and blends in really easily. This has a thicker texture, so usually on the days I reached for this I applied a heavier serum and then used this as a combo moisturizer and SPF (while making sure I was applying the full ¼ teaspoon for my face and neck for full coverage rather than the typical amount I would use for a moisturizer). Along with the chemical sunscreen ingredients to provide protection from the sun, this formula also has algae extract and antioxidants to help fight fine lines and wrinkles (antioxidants also help to fight free radical damage that can come from pollution in the air, so pairing them with sunscreen in your morning routine is a great idea). The only thing I don’t love about this sunscreen is the cost of the full-size- I won my bottle in an Instagram giveaway, and while I would happily accept gifts of this, I won’t be pulling out my own debit card to restock this one. If your budget allows for this and you’re interested in a sunscreen that can also work as a moisturizer, this is definitely worth checking out.
Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare All-Physical Dark Spot Sun Defense Broad Spectrum SPF 50, 1.7 oz – Retail Value $42.00
This is actually a newly released product from Dr. Dennis Gross, so seeing the full-size in this bag (when the full-size alone is more than the cost of the entire set!!) made this kit feel extra special. This is a mineral (or “physical”) sunscreen made with 16% non-nano zinc oxide, so while protecting against UVA and UVB rays this also works to limit the effects of blue light rays (HEV). This sunscreen also has some nice skincare ingredients like lingonberry and sea buckthorn extract, and these botanicals work as antioxidants to help prevent skin damage. Mineral sunscreens are notorious for being difficult to work with, but luckily in the past few years more brands have figured their formulas out- this had a thinner texture and blended in easily, and it did not leave a white cast on me.
HUM® Nutrition Here Comes The Sun, 3 ct – Buy a 30 ct bottle for $12.00
I am really pleased to see the inclusion of these vitamin D3 supplements in this kit. A lot of your vitamin D absorption comes from being outside in the sun, and not getting enough of it can cause adverse symptoms on both your physical and mental health (vitamin D actually helps with keeping a strong immune system, bone strength, and regulating your moods!). I know first hand how important these supplements can be because I was actually diagnosed as being vitamin D deficient after a blood test by my primary care physician earlier this year. These supplements wouldn’t work for me because one dose is 2000 IU and my doctor has me on a 5000 IU supplement, but that doesn’t mean this won’t work for others who need a vitamin D boost. I appreciate the smaller size of these too; the three together was about the same size as my bigger supplement, as shown in the last photo on the slide.
Isle of Paradise Color Correcting Self-Tanning Drops in Medium, 0.14 oz – Estimated Value $3.87 (buy the 1.01 oz version for $29.00)
I am super pale, and since I burn so easily I have embraced my pastiness rather than strive for that golden glow that looks so amazing on other people. These drops are a really handy way to add color to your skin without going out in the sun- to use, add a few drops to your moisturizer (make sure to wash your hands after!), and wait 4-6 hours to start to see a tan develop. I like using this in my evening moisturizer so I wake up looking a little more sun-kissed, and I like that I can control the color based on how many drops I add (since I like just a hint, I use 2 drops, but if you’re wanting a stronger bronze than IoP recommended 8-12 drops). The medium shade should work for multiple skin types, but this is also offered in a lighter and deeper shade as well. The application is almost fool-proof, and I didn’t notice any streaks (but I did make sure to take my moisturizer down to my neck to make sure there wasn’t a jarring difference between my face and my neck).
Kate Somerville® DeliKate Recovery Serum, 0.33 oz – Estimated Value $29.33 (buy the 1 oz version for $88.00)
I love that this set included a soothing serum- while we can all be as diligent as possible with sunscreen and reapplying it, sometimes the sun just manages to eek out a victory. This serum is formulated with a ceramide and peptide complex designed to help heal your moisture barrier (which can get damaged by sunburns, or even over-exfoliating), and it also has ginger, Tasmanian pepper, and cucumber seed to soothe and calm irritated skin. My moisture barrier has been pretty healthy lately (something I am actually *really* proud of), but I still like to use soothing serums like this as a preventative measure to keep my skin healthy. This was a really lovely serum! It was thin and lightweight, and it layered really well in my routine. If my rosacea was acting up, I could definitely see myself purchasing this to get my skin back on track.
Lancôme UV Expert Aquagel Defense Primer & Moisturizer SPF 50, 0.33 oz – Estimated Value $13.33 (buy the 1 oz version for $40.00)
This sunscreen is designed for those with oily or combination skin, and it has a cooling gel texture that absorbs into my skin easily and leaves behind a smooth finish. It has some silicones in it to give it the feel of a primer to wear under makeup, however since it has both denatured alcohol and peppermint extract this is a sunscreen that doesn’t work for my sensitive skin. If you’re skin isn’t sensitive and you’re looking for an SPF sunscreen to wear under makeup, this may be worth trying out!
Murad Essential-C Day Moisture Broad Spectrum SPF 30 PA+++, 0.8 oz – Estimated Value $30.59 (buy the 1.7 oz version for $65.00)
I’ve tried this before, and I think I even got the full-size in a Glam Bag Plus from Ipsy a year or so ago. This is another moisturizer/SPF combo, only it has a much lighter formula than the one from Dermalogica. I appreciate that a generous size was sent- this is a little less than half the amount of the full-size version, which is nice when the full-size is on the pricier end.
Peter Thomas Roth Water Drench® Broad Spectrum SPF 45 Hyaluronic Cloud Moisturizer, 0.17 oz – Estimated Value $5.50 (buy the 0.67 oz version for $22.00)
Like the Dermalogica sunscreen, I also have the full-size version of this and I am working my way through it. Also, like the Dermalogica, this is a heavier sunscreen that could definitely work as a combo moisturizer/SPF step in your routine. I love the entire Water Drench line from Peter Thomas Roth (this bubble mask is an especially fun treat), and this has the same 30% hyaluronic acid complex to keep your skin hydrated throughout the day, while also having broad spectrum SPF 40 coverage. This does take about a second or two longer to rub into my skin, but I still really enjoy it.
REN Clean Skincare Clean Screen Mineral SPF 30 Mattifying Face Sunscreen, 0.34 oz – Estimated Value $7.60 (buy the 1.7 oz version for $38.00)
This was the big miss in the set for me- luckily it was only a mini instead of one of the bigger sizes! To start with, the packaging had a lot of air in it, so even getting the product out took some elbow grease (I may or may not have used my teeth to squeeze the tube enough to get it out *shrug emoji*). The texture of this was thick and it took a while to rub into my skin, and it felt like there was a residue sitting on my face rather than absorbed into my skin. While this didn’t leave a white cast on me per se, I really don’t think this would work on those with deeper complexions. The nail in the coffin was that after I applied it my face felt a bit tingly like it was having a reaction. There are a lot of potential culprits in the ingredients list (added fragrance, citrus oils, botanical extracts my skin isn’t used to…), and overall this is just not the sunscreen for me.
Shiseido Ultimate Sun Protector Lotion Broad Spectrum SPF 50+, 0.23 oz – Estimated Value $3.50 (buy the 2 oz version for $25.00)
This is actually one of the few water-resistant sunscreens we received in this kit thanks to Shiseido’s “wet force” technology, and I really appreciate that. For best results you should apply this about thirty minutes before you plan on getting wet (or sweating heavily), and then make sure to reapply after 80 minutes to keep that skin protected. This went onto my skin clear, and I really liked the light texture of it. It does have a bit of that traditional sunscreen scent, but that just leaves me wishing for a warm sunny day and the beach.
Supergoop!® Unseen Sunscreen SPF 40, 0.5 oz – Retail Value $17.00
If you’ve been into subscription boxes for a while, chances are that you’ve already tried this sunscreen. I’ve received it plenty of times, but I am still happy to have another travel-sized tube to add to my arsenal. I actually didn’t love this sunscreen when I first tried it a few years ago- it has a silicone base that makes the texture super similar to the OG Smashbox Primer. But, it kept coming in boxes and I continued to try it, and now I really enjoy it. I like to use this sunscreen when I will be wearing makeup, and this will work as a primer for me while also protecting me from the sun.
The Wrap Up:
The Verdict: This was an absolute winner of a set from Sephora. Multiple full-sized sunscreens? Check. Multiple generously-sized samples? Check. A wide variety of textures and formulas to explore? Check. Newly released products from popular brands? Check. Everyone should be wearing sunscreen during the day, and because of that I think almost everyone would enjoy this kit. Honestly, in bag of 10 sunscreens, I am pleasantly surprised there was only one I didn’t like. Plus, the value on this is such a great deal- everything except the Hum supplements adds up to $198.22. While that is admittedly short of the promised $221.00 value (maybe some of that missing value is in the nice makeup bag?), the value is still worth more than five times the cost of the kit. All of that combined with the fact that $25.00 from every purchase is donated to the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center? If you’re on the fence, this is your sign to buy this set before it sells out. If you’re not on the fence, well, let me know in the comments how I can improve my writing style, because I think this is one of my all-time favorite sets Sephora has ever curated.
Value Breakdown: This kit costs $39.00 and has a value of $198.22. That means you’re paying approximately the following for each item:
- Biossance: $2.36
- Clinique: $4.52
- Dermalogica: $2.06
- Dr. Dennis Gross: $8.26
- Isle of Paradise: $0.76
- Kate Sommerville: $5.77
- Lancome: $2.62
- Murad: $6.02
- Peter Thomas Roth: $1.08
- Ren: $1.49
- Shiseido: $0.69
- Supergoop: $3.34
- Hum Nutrition: N/A
What do you think of the Sephora Favorites: Sun Safety Kit? What is your favorite sunscreen?