I am always on the lookout for lightweight sunscreens especially for my face.
Though I prefer physical sunscreens to the chemical ones, I do use both. On Renu’s blog, Cosmetopiadigest, I read her mini-review of Country & Stream Honey UV Water Gel SPF 32, and I was intrigued because she said it was lightweight. When I searched for Country & Stream online, I discovered they had an SPF 50 version and I decided to try it out.
Country & Stream is a Japanese brand, and I bought the Honey UV Water Gel SPF 50+ on an international website, Beautius.com, that took about two weeks to get the product to me.
I received a very sweet thank you note from someone named Traci in response to my purchase, along with some cute stickers, candy! and a sheet mask, Leaders Mediu Amino Moisture Mask to try out. I thought that was very nice to send those extras.
Country & Stream Honey UV Water Gel SPF 50+ PA++++
What’s In It?
Country & Stream has two collections: one with apple as a key ingredient and one with honey. They have a range of skincare products in each collection. This sunscreen is from the Honey collection; it is moisturizing (honey is a humectant), antibacterial (good for healing blemishes) and has antioxidant properties to protect from free radicals. It also contains a form of hyaluronic acid and royal jelly, another bee product that helps stimulate collagen production for anti-aging benefits. It also contains lots of herbal extracts, many from organic sources. In addition to being hydrating, it contains dimethicone which makes this product a good primer for foundation.
Country & Stream Honey UV Water Gel SPF 50+ PA++++ protects from both UVA (long wave rays that damage skin) and UVB (short wave rays that produce sunburn) rays. The PA++++ is the highest rating in Asian skincare for preventing damage from UVA rays.
As I mentioned earlier, I prefer physical sunscreen filters but this sunscreen contains both physical/mineral and chemical filters. The mineral sunscreens in the products are familiar zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. The chemical sunscreens are Octinoxate (absorbs UVB rays) and Uvinul A Plus (absorbs UVA rays). I’m not familiar with Unvinul A Plus, but Octinoxate is a common organic compound sunscreen ingredient in U.S. sunscreens and lip balms. I’m glad that it doesn’t contain the somewhat controversial Oxy or Avobenzone that may mimic hormones. The product also contains an organic compound Tinosorb S (BASF’s trade name) or Bemotrizinol that is known to have strong synergistic effects on SPF when combined with other sunscreens. In fact, it has been shown to be the most effective UV absorber, and that may help account for the product’s PA++++ rating. I read that, for some reason, it hasn’t been approved by US FDA (it may not have been put forward for testing in the U.S.) but it is approved in Europe and Australia.
The back of the tube is written in Japanese, but here’s the complete ingredient list: Water, ethylhexyl methoxycinnamate, propanediol, diethylamino hydroxybenzoyl hexyl benzoate, zinc oxide, methyl laurate heptyl, titanium oxide, dimethicone, honey, royal jelly, hydrolysed collagen, solubilised collagen, sodium hyaluronate, hydrolysed hyaluronic acid, sodium acetyl hyaluronate, marshmallow root extract, chamomile flower extract, dipotassium glycyrrhizate, jojoba leaf extract, lavender flower extract, rosemary leaf extract, Alchemilla japonica leaf extract, bis-ethylhexyloxyphenol methoxyphenyl triazine, cyclopentasiloxane, (acrylic hydroxyethylmethacrylate / sodium acryloyldimethyltaurinate) copolymer, diisostearyl malate, aluminium hydroxide, PEG-60 hydrogenated castor oil, stearic acid, phenoxyethanol, polyglyceryl-3 polydimethylsiloxyethyl dimethicone, polyhydroxy stearic acid, jojoba esters, fragrance, xanthan gum, butylene glycol, arginine, phytic acid, silver oxide
It is alcohol-free and parabens-free.
What’s It Like To Use?
Country & Stream Honey UV Water Gel SPF 50+ is indeed watery. Here’s what it looks like out of the tube:
When I spread it on, it has a definite watery consistency. When it quickly dries down, it is completely clear with no whitish cast whatsoever. It has a smooth coated feeling that I often get from using skincare products with dimethicone. I like it. It’s not heavy, it is mostly a lightweight feeling similar to the way primers can feel. It does give the skin a slight glow or shine, but I often wear foundation over it so it isn’t an issue. Even on its own, it isn’t obviously shiny on me.
It does have a light fragrance that smells herbal and citrusy that the website describes as Honey Lemon. I don’t mind it. It disappears after a few minutes.
More Product Info
Country & Stream Honey UV Water Gel SPF 50+ comes in a handy plastic tube, containing 45 g. I’m hoping it will last me through the summer. As I mentioned, I bought it on Beautius.com where it is currently on sale ($2 off) for $15.90 plus shipping. My total for the purchase was about $22.
I think Country & Stream Honey UV Water Gel SPF 50+ PA++++ is a good sunscreen for dry skin or mature skin that can use extra hydration. It may be hydrating enough for some to skip a moisturizer, and it certainly works as a primer. I like the lightweight/watery consistency on application, and I don’t mind the primer-ish feeling on my skin. Although it has chemical as well as mineral sunscreen filters, it’s affordable and a good value for the ingredients and benefits received. I recommend it!
Have you tried any Asian sunscreens?