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If you can, get the EUROPEAN version, not the US version of Anthelios
on July 14, 2015
Before you buy, just know this: All the raves for Anthelios (which started in the mid-to-late 90's) originally were for the *European* version, which contains Mexoryl, a patented UVA blocker with proven track record in EU and Canada. Mexoryl is highly stable; it does not degrade after hours of sun exposure, rendering the "reapplication" part of sunscreen nearly moot. L'Oreal was the one to patent and develop Mexoryl, which is why it's only found in L'oreal brands outside of the US. In the late 90s and early 2000's everyone was buying Anthelios from European or Canadian sites. Coasting on this word-of-mouth success, the US version was soon launched--- but without the star ingredient which is so effective.
The FDA did not approve Mexoryl as a sunscreen; Talk to anyone in cosmetic industry regulation and it's well-known that the USA is 10 years behind Europe and Asia on approving sunscreens. The list of US-approved sunscreen ingredients is very short, whereas in Europe and Asia the list is longer--- and these newer ingredients are much lighter, thinner, and more absorbent -- Another reason why EU/Asia sunscreens feel like invisible silk---and US ones tend to feel greasy/heavy.
The US version does NOT contain Mexoryl, instead it contains Avobenzone --also highly stable for many hours under the sun -- but this formula also contains Oxybenzone, a controversial ingredient (look it up). I'm not against chemical sunscreens, but I personally avoid Oxybenzone as much as I can. However, one great benefit is the milky-light texture, absorbent finish that feels weightless on skin. This is one reason why it's so popular.
If you don't care about chemical UV filters and just want an absorbent formula that works great on the face, this is a good option. But know that the Euro version is far superior, and if travelling outside the US, stock up --it's very affordable.