Six Pinoy sunscreens to try under P500 (Belo, Celeteque, Kojie San, Dermplus, & Maxipeel)

Let’s be honest: sticky sunscreens will certainly have us preferring to skip sun protection altogether. This is probably why I’ve always turned to Japanese sunscreens because of their non-stickiness and comfortable wear. But good news to those want to patronize our local products - there are actually some good (and non-sticky) proudly Filipino sunscreens in the market! Even better news is that these are all under P500 so we have no more excuses to skip on sunscreen. Here’s what I tried!

I first tried the Kojie San SPF 50 PA+++ Face Sunblock (P269 for 50g at Watsons) after reading Den’s review. It feels like a light lotion that’s easy to blend out, and doesn’t leave a white cast on my morena skin. I find this comfortable enough even for hot days. It comes up to P5.38 per gram but hey, you get a comfortable, alcohol-free formulation! The only con is that is it’s always out of stock, so when you do find it in your local Watsons, you may wanna grab more than just one tube!

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I came across the Maxipeel Sun Protection Cream SPF 20 (P47 for 25g at SM Beauty) and was surprised because I didn’t even know they had one. It makes sense for Maxipeel to include it in their offerings though, since their best-selling products are chemical exfoliants that can make skin more sun-sensitive. The sunscreen feels like a slightly thick lotion, but it dries down comfortably. This would be a good sunscreen for days when you don’t have to be exposed in the sun as much since it only offers SPF 20. This is even harder to find than Kojie San but it’s the cheapest local sunscreen in this list at just P0.33 per gram.

I thought Dermplus was an international brand, but apparently it’s locally made! They actually have a lot of sunscreens to choose from, and we opted for the Moisturizing Sunscreen SPF 35 For Face and Body (P345 for 100ml at Watsons). This has a very runny consistency and has the feel of a light lotion once it’s blended out. I noticed a slight bit of white cast while wearing this. Apart from that, it’s a pretty decent face and body sunscreen because it doesn’t give me that sticky feeling. It’s also water-resistant, paraben-free, and alcohol-free.

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One of the very first sunscreens I first tried when putting together a proper skincare routine is the Celeteque Sun Care Face and Body Sun Defense Crean with SPF 50 (P449 for 120ml at department stores). This is one of the most accessible sunscreen options as you can easily find it in most beauty aisles. Unfortunately, this has the slight heaviness of a traditional sunscreen formula so it’s not my top pick for a face or body sunscreen. It also leaves a white cast. The good news is that it’s an alcohol-free and silicone-free formulation so it may be a good option for those with sensitive skin.

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We see so many raves for the Belo Sunexpert Perfecting Shield Tinted Sunscreen SPF 50 PA++++ (P169 for 10ml at Watsons) so we decided to include this on our list. This has a tone-adapt technology that supposedly adapts to your skin tone. It looked slightly light on my morena skin though, so I wouldn’t recommend using this on its own if you’re darker than NC30. It also comes up out as the most expensive sunscreen on this list at P16.9 per gram.

I’m quite particular with scents in my skincare so I hate how it has a floral scent that lingers on the skin. That aside, it does have good ingredients like niacinamide, which is known to be a good brightening and anti-aging ingredient. It also feels very comfortable on the skin, dries easily, and can be used as an alternative makeup base if you have a light skin tone.

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If I had to pick a fave from this bunch, I’d go with the Belo Sunexpert Face SPF 40 PA+++ (P179 for 20ml at Watsons). It’s the second priciest at P8.95 per gram but the texture and finish reminds me a lot of the Japanese sunscreens I love! Unlike its tinted sister, this doesn’t have a particularly off-putting scent. It does contain a drying alcohol (benzyl alcohol) but it seems to be low enough on the list to not irritate my skin.

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We hope that one of these local sunscreens will get you into the daily habit of wearing sun protection! Have you tried any of these products? Which one is your favorite? Do share your thoughts with us in the comment section below.

Photography by Nicole Quindara


Kojie San ingredients: De-ionized water, Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate, Propylheptyl Caprylate, Glyceryl Stearate (and) Ceteareth-20 (and) Ceteareth-12 (and) Cetearyl Alcohol (and) Cetyl Palmitate, Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate (and) Diethylamino Hydroxybenzoyl Hexyl Benzoate, Cetyl Alcohol, Zinc Oxide (and) Hydrogen Dimethicone, Mannitol (and) Carrageenan (and) Xanthan Gum (and) Laminaria Digitata Extract, Mannitol (and) Pisum sativum (Pea) Extract and Histidine HCl (and) Arginine (and) Cyclodextrin (and) Dextrin (and) Yeast Extract (and) Acetyl Tyrosine (and) pyridoxine HCl (and) Khaya Senegalensis Bark Extract (and) Nicotinamide Adenine Dinucleotide (and) Disodium Succinate (and) Aspartic Acid, Butyl Methoxydibenzoylmethane, Methylene Bis-benzotriazolyl Tetranethyl Butyphenol, Benzophenone-3, Titanium Dioxide (and) Silicon Dioxide (and) Dimethicone/Methicone Copolymer, Cocoglycerides, Dimethicone, Butyrospermum parkii (Shea) Butter, Pentaerythrityl Distearate, Hydrogenated Dimer Dilinoleyl/Dimethylcarbonate Copolymer, Octocrylene, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Caprylyl Glycol, Methylisothiazolinone, Chlorphenesin, Sodium Polyacrylate, Fragrance, Xanthan Gum, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizinate, Tetrasodium EDTA

Maxipeel ingredients: Water, Octyl Methoxycinnamate, Stearic Acid, Cetostearyl Alcohol, Glycerylmonostearate, Diethylamino Hydroxybenzoyl Hexyl Benzoate, Propylene Glycol, Titanium Dioxide, Aluminum Hydroxide, Dimethicone/Methicone Copolymer, Isopropyl Myristate, Demethicone 500cst, Glycerin, Carboxy Polymethynene, Triethanolamine, Polysorbate 20, DMDM Hydantoin, Cyclomethicone, Sodium Citrate

Dermplus ingredients: Water, Proylene Glycol, PVP Hexadecene Capolymer, Phenylbenximidazone Sulfonic Acid, Octocrylene, Titanium Dioxide, Cetyl Alcohol, Triethanolamine, Cetearyl Alcohol (and) Ceteareth-20, Glyceryl Stearate and PEG-100 Stearate, Isopropyl Mysristate, Butyl Methoxydibenzoylmethane, Dimethicone, Propylene Glycol(and) Propyl Paraben, Aloe Barbadensis, Polyoxyethylene 20 sorbitan mooleate, Propylene Glycol(and) Algae Extract Perfume, Magnesium Aluminum Silicate, Xanthan Gum, Alantoin, EDTA Tetrasodium.

Celeteque ingredients: Water; Cetearyl Alcohol; Glyceryl Stearate; PEG-40 Stearate; Ceteareth-20; Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride; Titanium Dioxide; Isoamyl Laurate; Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate; Glycerin; Betaine; Butyl Methoxydibenzoylmethane; Benzophenone-3; Phospholipids; Xanthan Gum; Phenoxyethanol; Tetrasodium EDTA; BHT; Methylparaben; Butylene Glycol; Butylparaben; Isobutylparaben; Ethylparaben; Propylparaben

Belo tinted sunscreen ingredients: Water, Methoxcinnamate, Titanium Dioxide, Aluminum hydroxide, Lauroyl Lysine, Dimethicone/ Methicone Copolymer, Dimethicone, Cetearyl, Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Niacinamide, Cetyl Alcohol, Glyceryl Stearate, Ceteareth-20, Ceteareth-12, Cetearyl Alcohol, Ceteareth-12, Cetearyl Alcohol, Cetylpalmitate, Butyl Methoxydibenzoylmethane

Belo ingredients: Water, Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate, Cyclotetrasiloxane, Cyclopentasiloxane, Cetyl Alcohol, Glyceryl Stearate, Ceteareth-20, Ceteareth-12, Cetearyl Alcohol, Cetyl Palmitate, Butyl Methoxydibenzoylmethane, Octocrylene, Benzyl Alcohol, Glyceryl Caprylate, Glyceryl Undecylenate, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, Titanium Dioxide, Alumina, Simethicone, Sorbitan Palmitate, Sorbitan Olivate, Carbomer, Triethanolamine, Alpha-Bisabolol, Panthenol, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Citric Acid, Tetrasodium EDTA, Trimethoxybenzylidene Pentanedione