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Add to Cart: Glow Recipe Watermelon Glow Niacinamide Sunscreen

Megan K.
ByMegan K.Mar 28, 2022 | 8 comments

Add to Cart is a reader interest series that breaks down products and launches in beauty and skincare from your wish list. Has something caught your eye and preoccupied your desires? What products are you curious to learn more about? Let us know what's living on your wish list in the comments - each month, we'll select, buy, and review one product to see if it lives up to the hype!

Welcome to another round of Add to Cart! As I hinted at last month, I have been waiting for this month's product to launch in anticipation of reviewing it. Glow Recipe is such a fun and well-formulated brand and I was thrilled when I saw them releasing an SPF!

The Product I Chose: Glow Recipe Watermelon Glow Niacinamide Sunscreen, 1.7 fl oz - $34

My Subscription Addiction paid for this product. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes).

Real talk: SPF continues to be one of the best things you can do for your skin in terms of skin cancer prevention and anti-aging. Don't believe me? Ask literally any dermatologist. And, sure, I get it. SPF is a boring beauty purchase. And often, it feels gross on your face, leaves a chalky cast, or smells like the bottom of your beach tote. Gross. But there are a ton of great options out there now that have changed the SPF game, and this is a great new addition to any routine if you are looking to add SPF to your daily routine or (maybe you just want something a little more fun).

The Ingredients


Here is a closer look at the ingredient list:

Homosalate 8.5%, Octisalate 5.0%, Octocrylene 8.5%, Zinc Oxide 12.1%

Water/Aqua/Eau, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Propanediol, Glycerin, Cetearyl Olivate, Polyhydroxystearic Acid, Ethylhexyl Methoxycrylene, Potassium Cetyl Phosphate, Lauroyl Lysine, Phenyl Trimethicone, Dimethicone, Sorbitan Olivate, Inulin Lauryl Carbamate, Xanthan Gum, Triethoxycaprylylsilane, 1,2-Hexanediol, Caprylyl Glycol, Hydroxyacetophenone, Polyester-8, Diethylhexyl Syringylidenemalonate, Cetearyl Alcohol, Menthone Glycerin Acetal, Lactic acid, Arachidyl Alcohol, Chlorphenesin, Citrullus Lanatus (Watermelon) Fruit Extract, Niacinamide, Sodium Stearoyl Glutamate, Coco-Glucoside, Behenyl Alcohol, Trisodium Ethylenediamine Disuccinate, Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe Vera) Leaf Juice, Silica, Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Arachidyl Glucoside, Sodium Citrate, Fragrance (Parfum)*, Sodium Hyaluronate, Magnesium Aspartate, Zinc Gluconate, Phenoxyethanol, Copper Gluconate

The Key Players and What They Do

Chemical and Mineral Filter Blend: Chemical SPFs filters absorb into your skin and absorb UV rays. Physical SPFs sit on top and block UV rays. A lot of people prefer chemical because it avoids any issues with chalkiness, but others prefer physical because they can be more gentle on the skin. Glow Recipe has chosen a blend of these two types for a combined SPF of 50, which is fantastic.

Niacinamide: We know her, we love her. Niacinamide is one of those wonder ingredients that add dewiness and brightness while helping minimize pores.

Hyaluronic Acid: AKA a big moisture bomb. HA holds 1000 times its own weight in water and adds hydration to the skin.

Watermelon: This is great for your skin in the same way that is it great for your tummy: it has antioxidants, loads of vitamins, and some minerals too. It also is another ingredient that helps protect against UV damage.

Aloe: Soothing and hydrating. Just what your skin needs in and out of the sun.

Lactic Acid: An exfoliator and brightener.

My Takeaway

What Does It Smell Like?

Exactly like the other watermelon formulas in the Glow Recipe line! So if you love that mix of genuine watermelon+watermelon jolly rancher, you are in for a treat. I do think it faded faster than some of the other GR products, which might be nice if you aren't a fan of this iconic smell.

What Does It Feel Like?

I feel like texture is one of the most important factors when it comes to truly loving a particular sunscreen. And this one is smooth and absorbs easily, which gave me a big sigh of relief. I would classify it as a medium-weight cream that doesn't leave any white cast or weird grittiness behind. It is the sort of cream you can feel on your face until it completely absorbs. After that, I just noticed a nice velvet finish.

As far as that glowy finish this brand is known for, it is pretty subtle. There is no mica or anything else glittery. But it still gives a glow, very much like the Glow Recipe Niacinamide Dew Drops. It is more of a dewiness that comes from good ingredients and hydration rather than a physical additive. Still, two thumbs up!

When Should I Apply This?

As my dermatologist has always said:

If it's bright enough to read a book or for a plant to grow, you need SPF on your face. 

What she means by this is that yeah, you should have SPF on, even inside. Every day. The really great thing about this SPF is that it makes an utterly fantastic primer. It gives skin a nice dewy finish and has the grip I would want to see in a decent primer anyways. I also would use this as a replacement to my daily moisturizer since the ingredient list has most of the things I would want to see there anyways. It is an easy one-step layer for sun protection, glow, AND moisturization.

Who Is It For?

Anyone who needs a good SPF in their routine should give this a try. I think it will be especially thrilling to those who are already big Glow Recipe fans!

You didn't think I would review this new SPF without comparing it to my holy grail Glow Screen, did you?

SuperGoop Glow Screen VS Glow Recipe Watermelon Glow Niacinamide Sunscreen:

Ok, ok. I mention Glow Screen a lot. Literally, my love for this product is still growing, even after using it daily for all this time. And... well, it is still my favorite. Even over this new treat from Glow Recipe. This boils down to a few key points for me:

I prefer the luster that I get from Glow Screen. 

I am dry and dull without extra help and I just really love the pearly blur that I get from Glow Screen. The Glow Recipe formula does have dewiness and makes my skin look amazing, but I think if you still feel a little "naked", Glow Screen is going to be your pick here.

SuperGoop's Glow Screen feels lighter on my face.

Glow Screen has a lighter finish than Glow Recipe's sunscreen. This is neither good nor bad, but I generally hit the gym first thing in the morning with my SPF on. And I sweat a lot. The Glow Screen just feels better during the stair climber.

Where the Glow Recipe beats my beloved Glow Screen is in SPF rating. SPF50 is awesome!

Should You Buy Glow Recipe Watermelon Glow Niacinamide Sunscreen?

I think everyone should have a sunscreen they absolutely love. And I can see a lot of people falling madly in love with this new Glow Recipe formula. It's adorable, smells awesome, feels great, and performs more like a skincare+makeup hybrid. While I will still be reaching for my SuperGoop over it, I absolutely plan on using this bottle up when I run out of Glow Screen. And I wouldn't hesitate to recommend either to anyone.

Ready to Add to Cart? Get it here!

What's Next?

Here are the products living their best life in my shopping cart:


What new launch has you wondering if it is worth an Add to Cart? Let me know in the comments below!

Megan K.
Megan K.
I love natural/vegan beauty products, Korean skincare, unique jewelry, and weird candies from far away places. When I am not waiting for my next exciting box you can find me painting or taking photographs of interesting people. I never leave home without pug hair somewhere on my shirt and a bold lipstick on my smile.

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I love love love Glow Recipe products, so I jumped at this the second it went on sale! Living in Florida, I constantly need to have a great sunscreen handy, but this is NOT it. I am also a huge SuperGoop lover, and this doesn’t compare at all. This Glow recipe sunscreen pills terribly! I use glow recipe serum and moisturizer and it pills, even when I use nothing but this sunscreen on my face, if I put on a face covering, it pills! Read the reviews ladies, almost everyone who wasn’t given the product free to try, comments on this! I have never taken anything back from Sephora, and I returned this.

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This is a great callout! I didn’t notice any pilling issues… but I also have been wearing it barefaced with no makeup or skincare during the day. I was slapping it on before the gym for the most part. I wonder if this has to do with it being part physical SPF.

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Ooo what is the rms tubes? Is that an overtone color for hair?

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It’s cream eyeshadow

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Thanks for this review! I vote the CC+ Nude Glow for next time! 🙂

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Great write up, Megan! I was never picky about sunscreen until I started scanning ingredients for potential aggressors…I felt like Goldilocks trying to find just the right one lol. So far I am loving my new find. 🥳 My issue, however, is the two hour window. How does one keep adding sunscreen after makeup has already been applied??

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Thanks for this Megan. I’m super picky about sunscreens and was hoping to see your review in time to help me decide whether to grab this in a few days when the Sephora sale hits – so great timing! I will most likely be purchasing this – I’m a big GR fan.

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Jody E

I think I need a sample of this to try first. The dew drops are too heavy for my face. This sounds like it might be. I don’t need a glow either. No dryness in my face.
I have a list somewhere of new items. lol.

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