Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel Sunscreen Review

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel Sunscreen ReviewHey everyone, how are you doing? Hopefully the weather has started to turn around for all of you heading into Spring. Now that we’re seeing warmer temperatures it’s important to start thinking about sun protection while outside. In the winter I wear SPF on my face through my moisturizer or foundation but in the Spring & Summer I absolutely need an extra layer of sun protection.

I was just starting to think that I needed to pick up some new sunscreen when I was selected to participate in the Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel Sunscreen #BlockandBoost campaign through Brandbacker. I’ve talked about Neutrogena’s Hydro Boost line on my blog before and many of you know that the Hydro Boost for Extra Dry Skin is my HG moisturizer. I’m currently using Hydro Boost with SPF 15 as my daily moisturizer so I was excited to try out the water gel sunscreen!

*Disclaimer: These products were provided to me by Neutrogena® in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own. 

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel Sunscreen Selfie

My Neutrogena box arrived on the first day of Spring that we hit over 20 degrees here. I was just thinking that I should put on some sunscreen when the doorbell rang and UPS delivered my water gel sunscreen. When I opened it I saw that Neutrogena also included a cute hat that reads “Hello Sunshine” on the front. I’ve been wearing it all week! I always forget to put sunscreen on my scalp which was a nightmare when I sunburned in Peru last year.

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel Sunscreen

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel Sunscreen
With SPF 50

Redefine your sunscreen experience with NEW Hydro Boost Water Gel SunscreenSPF 50 with a water-light feel and broad spectrum UVA/UVB protection. Infused with hyaluronic acid, Vitamin E and glycerin, the formula instantly quenches dry skin – Neutrogena

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel Sunscreen retails from $15.99CAD (on Amazon) and comes in an 88ml bottle. It contains SPF 50, hyaluronic acid, Vitamin E & glycerin. For best results it should be applied 15 minutes before sun exposure and after 2 hours or 80 minutes of swimming or sweating. Neutrogena believes that if they “keep developing products that feel good, as well as protect, people will want to wear sunscreen regularly.”

This sunscreen contains Neutrogena’s helioplex complex which is very effective at blocking sun rays. My concern with this is that it contains avobenzone and oxybenzone. Oxybenzone is very common in chemical sunscreens. From what I can gather through multiple searches “avobenzone is one of the best UVA blockers approved by the FDA, but it is highly unstable when exposed to sunlight. [Source] Basically adding oxybenzone stabliizes the avobenzone and blocks UVB and UVA wavelengths. Which is fine — But oxybenzone is considered an 8 on the EWG toxicity scale which is quite high. There is research that suggests that it is linked to skin cancers and it has been proven to contribute to coral bleaching.

*Please keep in mind that I am not an expert in any of these chemicals or ingredients, but I wanted to provide you with every detail and viewpoint I can.

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel Sunscreen Swatch

Formula & Application

This formula is gel based like the rest of the Hydro boost line. Gel moisturizers/lotions apply so easily, and the Hydro Boost Water Gel Lotion Sunscreen is no exception. Normally with high SPF sunscreens I have to rub them in quite a bit and use more product to cover all my exposed skin but the Hydro Boost Sunscreen applies soooo smoothly. It rubs in with barely any effort and doesn’t leave a white cast on my skin or clothing.

The formula isn’t greasy at all. I was shocked, it felt like a cream to powder application. My arms and legs were dry and smooth a minute after application but still felt hydrated.

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel Sunscreen Review

No white cast once rubbed in!

Sun Protection

I’ve worn Hydro Boost Water Gel Sunscreen twice so far when I was outdoors for a few hours and I didn’t burn at all! I did some gardening in 26 degree weather and went for a walk when it was plus 20 and my skin didn’t suffer at all. There’s a slight SPF smell but that goes away quickly.

I really, really like the application of this product and I completely agree that it blocks sun rays. I’m concerned about the negative effects of oxybenzone bleaching coral reefs though. I will keep wearing Hydro Boost Water Gel Sunscreen when I’m home in Alberta, but I’m going to be picking up a different sunscreen when I go to the beach.

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel Sunscreen

Do you wear sunscreen daily and what do you guys think of the new Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel Lotion Sunscreen?

Thank you so much for reading! Let me know what your favourite sunscreen lotion is and don’t forget to subscribe! Talk Soon xx

You wouldn’t walk in the rain without an Umbrella, and you shouldn’t step out during the day (cloudy or sunny) without sunscreen! – Neutrogena



  1. May 5, 2018 / 11:44 am

    Great review! I’m about out of my sunscreen so I need to get a new one! I’ll try this one out!😊

    • AlwaysCleia
      May 6, 2018 / 10:05 pm

      Let me know if you like it! πŸ™‚

  2. S | VividlyLovely
    May 3, 2018 / 7:49 pm

    Ah, so glad you got to feature this on your blog 😊 This is definitely going on my list, as this will be perfect for the summer! Great post πŸ’•

    • AlwaysCleia
      May 4, 2018 / 9:41 pm

      It was so nice of them to send this my way, I’ll definitely get some use out of it this summer. I hope you love it too, thanks for reading! xx

  3. May 2, 2018 / 11:06 pm

    Purchase not repurchase lol.

  4. May 2, 2018 / 11:06 pm

    Interesting because it has spf 50, my spf moisturizers only have 15 lol
    I like the ingredients but the oxybenzone is concerning too. Also I don’t think this brand is CF so I probably wouldn’t repurchase.

    • AlwaysCleia
      May 3, 2018 / 1:49 am

      I think 15 is the most common for SPF in skincare products like moisturizer, the 50 will definitely help this summer.
      I’m wanting to switch to a physical sunscreen once this bottle is done, I love everything about this one except for the oxybenzone. And no, not cruelty free πŸ™

      • May 3, 2018 / 9:08 am

        That makes sense. I still use more sunscreen on top anyway when I don’t wear makeup. But yes, will be great for the summer.
        Yeah I hear the physical ones are nice 😊

  5. Makeup by Erin
    May 2, 2018 / 7:05 pm

    I love the hydro boost range, so I’m definitely going to have to check this out! I’m such a gel formula person too!

    • AlwaysCleia
      May 3, 2018 / 1:47 am

      Hydo boost for life lol! πŸ˜„ I can’t go without the moisturizer!

  6. May 2, 2018 / 4:18 pm

    I love water gel formulas! I need to get a new sunscreen soon! I will keep this on my consideration list.

    • AlwaysCleia
      May 3, 2018 / 1:46 am

      They apply soooo easily! This one is pretty good πŸ™‚

  7. May 2, 2018 / 12:53 pm

    First of all, you look so cute in that hat! Secondly, do you know if it’s a physical or chemical sunscreen? I always wear a physical sunscreen – Josie Maran or It Cosmetics, but I’m running out of Josie’s regular SPF. I have her CC Cream with SPF, but sometimes I just want to go completely natural.

    • AlwaysCleia
      May 3, 2018 / 1:45 am

      Thank you! 😊 It’s a little big on me but I like it!
      It’s for sure a chemical sunscreen due to the avobenzone and oxybenzone πŸ™ I want to start using a physical sunscreen instead!

      • May 3, 2018 / 7:52 am

        You definitely should!! I’m hearing more and more brands coming out with physical only SPFs!

        • AlwaysCleia
          May 3, 2018 / 10:49 am

          That’s great, its so much better for the environment!

  8. May 2, 2018 / 12:36 pm

    so important to use sunscreen on ur face!! my tinted moisturizer has SPF in it, such a lifesaver πŸ™ŒπŸ» I like that this is a gel, sounds pretty great!

    • AlwaysCleia
      May 3, 2018 / 1:42 am

      Gel is by far my favourite skincare formula, I love how easily it applies! And yes SPF is a must 😊

  9. Ella Eris Beauty
    May 2, 2018 / 9:16 am

    This is actually very appealing to me! I hate sunscreen and honestly, this sounds horrid, but i hate using it because my face feels too oily!!! This looks like something I would be apt to try! Thank you for the review!

    • AlwaysCleia
      May 3, 2018 / 1:39 am

      I know the feeling, I prefer gel moisturizers for the same reason. I hate the feeling of a heavy product on my skin πŸ˜„
      I hope you love it if you try it!

      • Ella Eris Beauty
        May 3, 2018 / 9:12 am

        Thank you so much! I definitely plan to!!! πŸ€—

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