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 • Skincare  • Skincare Reviews  • I tried the Ultra Violette SPF 50 Serum – Did It Work for My Oily Skin?
Ultra Violette 3

I tried the Ultra Violette SPF 50 Serum – Did It Work for My Oily Skin?

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Main Image – Courtesy of writer

Now that the UK is *finally* in the midst of a heatwave, I’ve been spending time upping my SPF game and getting my skin ‘summer ready’ (although, mentally, I was ready two months ago. You know, when summer was supposed to begin…)

Most SPFs for the body work for me – I don’t have sensitive skin or react to any products meaning I can be pretty free and easy about which ones I choose.

However, because I have oily skin on my face, I always need to be wary of the formula I’m putting on it. Particularly when it comes to SPF and where frequent reapplication is vital.

Creams are usually way too thick for my skin so when I came across Ultra Violette SPF 50+ Queen Screen Luminizing Sunscreen (£38 on the Ultra Violette UK website), I was pretty excited to try it. Why? Because it’s an SPF serum. And I really love serums.

I love their lightweight formulas, I love that they can penetrate deeper than a moisturiser and I love their super-hydrating properties. Plus, there’s been loads of hype around this particular one and I’d been feeling a touch of FOMO.

Find out whether Queen Screen is lightweight enough for my oily skin, if it really is that good an SPF for my fair to medium skin tone and why, unfortunately for some, there’s one huge problem.

 


The product details

Ultra Violette SPF 50+ Queen Screen Luminizing Sunscreen is broad spectrum, so it covers both UVA (the rays that age the skin) and UVB (the rays that burn the skin). It comes in a 50ml glass bottle with a pipette applicator, much like many other standard skincare serums.

It contains pink algae extract which promises to firm and smooth the skin as well as reduce sun-induced pigmentation, and protecting, strengthening and brightening vitamins C, B5, E and F.

The most crucial ingredients are its SPF filters of course – Tinosorb M and S, Uvinul A Plus and Uvinul T150. However, unluckily for our friends in the US, these are not permitted or recognised under US federal sunscreen regulations, meaning that this SPF serum is not available in America. Which, honestly, is a real bummer.

These filters are apparently what give SPFs like this the wear-with-ease factor, and make users barely notice they’ve applied them. However, as it stands, the rules in the US state that only two filters – zinc oxide and titanium dioxide – are safe.

So whilst this review may not instantly speak to our American friends, bookmark it for when you happen to casually book a trip to a country where it is deemed safe. The UK, the EU, Canada, Australia and the Middle East all stock it.

 

Ultra Violette 2

Image – Courtesy of writer

 


First impressions

Ok, first the packaging. Neon orange and blue? Yes, please.  I hadn’t seen anything else like it and, being a pop-of-neon kind of girl (nails, mostly) it immediately spoke to me.

I squeezed the pipette applicator so that it dropped a bit onto the back of my hand and, sure enough, there was the serum I’d been hoping for. Lightweight, hydrating but not too greasy.

Usually, an SPF cream makes my hand so greasy I dread applying it to my face. But this gave me hope. And it smells of fresh rose too – no boring clinical fragrances here.

The instructions say to use this as your final step in your skincare regime which makes sense since your SPF should always be last. I just wanted to point that out as some people think a moisturiser always has to go on top of a serum. This isn’t the case here, just do your usual cleanse and toner if you use one, then apply Queen Screen.

If your skin is dry, you may want to apply your usual daytime serum and then Queen Screen over the top (applying two, sometimes three serums is normal for some). However, I know that my oily skin can only take one, so I applied a couple of drops after my morning cleanse and observed the results.

Straight away my skin felt beautifully hydrated, I had no white residue and it looked dewy, not wet. There’s nothing worse than applying a serum and feeling like your skin is going to take ages to dry. It sank in quickly (although the label says to wait 20 minutes before going into the sun) but my skin still held its glow.

 

Ultra Violette 2

Image – Courtesy of writer

 


My game-changing results

I did a bit of writing outside in the sunshine for an hour or so before going back inside to check how my skin was looking. Expecting my face to be a sweaty oil-slick, I was pleasantly surprised when I realised it really wasn’t excessively shiny.

My skin never fails to have some form of shine to it – that’s just my skin type – but after applying targeted SPF cream formulas, my trusty mattifiers need to come out at least an hour later. But I didn’t require them now, which was a pleasing result for me and it didn’t feel like my skin was weighed down by a heavy SPF for the entire day. And, crucially, I experienced no sunburn either (make sure you reapply every two hours).

It made me realise I’ve been doing it all wrong for all these years. I’ve just put up with the heaviness and greasiness that SPF creams give my skin every summer because at least they’re protecting it right? But an SPF serum is the way forward for me now. I won’t lie, the last week of UK sun has been pretty game-changing where my skin has been concerned. 

 

Ultra Violette 2

Image – Courtesy of writer

 


What other users are saying

It seems this product is the way forward for other users too, including those with very fair skin tones. VB (on ultraviolette.co.uk) says. “As a redhead who also takes strong biologic medication it’s so important for me to wear good sunscreen every single day of my life and I will never buy another after using Queen Screen. It’s soft serum like, super glowy and lasts all day, doesn’t feel like I’m wearing sunscreen on my face at all.”

Tegfan says, “This is smooth, smells divine and absorbs really well. Love this brand so much.” And Pip agrees, “smells great, goes on well under makeup. Absorbs well. Definitely worth it!”

In fact, the only negative comment I could find on the website was from Andrew who says, “the eye dropper is a cute dispenser idea but I would prefer a pump.” I see what he is saying – a pump is somewhat neater – but this obviously comes down to personal preference and the pipette applicator doesn’t affect the results of the product.

 

Ultra Violette

Image – Courtesy of writer

 


Value for money

£38 is just a few pounds shy of what I pay for my everyday La Roche Posay skincare serum, and that one doesn’t even contain SPF. Queen Screen is an SPF (and 50+ too) but also a really good skincare product, so it almost feels like I’m getting two for the price of one here.

It all depends on what you usually spend though and what you deem worthy. But overall, you can’t put a price on really good sun protection.

 


The takeaway

I’m so happy I’ve found a product that provides my oily skin with ample yet lightweight hydration and really good sun protection too. I’ll take anything that doesn’t make my face look like a mirror and is also comfortable to wear.

It absorbs quickly, leaving nothing but a dewy (not greasy) glow in its wake. Just remember to reapply it every two hours as, no matter how good your SPF is, your skin can still burn if you don’t stay on top of it.

 

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Beauty Editor

The former Beauty Editor of Glamour UK, Philippa has been a beauty and lifestyle journalist for over 16 years, picking up countless tips and tricks from makeup artists, hair stylists, dermatologists and celebrities. In that time she’s written for names like Cosmopolitan, The Sunday Times Style, The Telegraph, Grazia, Refinery 29 and Byrdie. Philippa lives in the UK with her husband, two children and their hyperactive cockapoo, Paddy.

Expertise: Makeup, hair care
Education: Oxford Brookes University
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