This article contains affiliate links* and PR samplesº I already did a full video review about this sunscreen, but felt it needed a blog article too: So, today is all about the D’Alba Waterful Essence Sun Cream with SPF50+ PA++++, a true K-beauty sunscreen superstar!
D’Alba Waterful Essence Sun Cream SPF 50+: Sunscreen Scandal Winner?
In all truth, the post 2020 sunscreen scandal generation of Korean sunscreens has been rather magical so far! I fell in love with the Round Lab Birch Juice Moisturizing Sun Cream straight away, and then developed an intense crush for the Beauty of Joseon Rice + Probiotics sunscreen.
Well, and now there is the D’Alba Waterful Essence Sun Cream, with me already on my second bottle and still very much in love. So much in love, in fact, that I already did a full review video about this Korean sunscreen:
But since that video turned out a little long, I thought it would be best to also do a written review for those of you who might get bored listening to me talking for half an hour in the video version. So, let’s go through the basics first and then I’ll share the reasons why I consider this to be one of the best Korean sunscreens available right now.
D’Alba Waterful Essence Sun Cream: The Basics
The D’Alba Waterful Essence Sun Cream with SPF50+ and PA++++ was one of the first sunscreens that got retested after the big sunscreen scandal in 2020, and it passed with flying colours. This isn’t too surprising, given that it was manufactured by Kolmar Korea, sunscreen manufacturer extraordinaire, and by now the manufacturing company behind almost every currently trending sunscreen from Korea.
D’Alba is quite an interesting brand for me as a European, because they use the idea of Italian “exoticism” for their brand marketing. Their key ingredient for all products is white truffle extract, said to be won from the Italian town Alba, hence the brand name, basically Italian for “from Alba.” White truffle extract is rich in antioxidants and naturally high in Vitamin C. It also provides emollient goodness in the form of fatty acids, good for skin barrier support and for keeping skin supple. There are a couple of other anti aging claims made about this mushroom extract, but I am not 100% sure how valid those are (e.g. that it is skin-firming and can help minimise wrinkles).
Of course, the D’Alba Waterful Essence Sun Cream also contains white truffle extract, but that’s not all the antioxidant, plant-based goodness you can find in its silky-smooth formula!
Here is the full list of ingredients for the D’Alba Waterful Essence Sun Cream with SPF50+ and PA++++:
“Water, Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate, Homosalate, Butylene Glycol, Ethylhexyl Salicylate, Diethylamino Hydroxybenzoyl Hexyl Benzoate, Silica, Ethylhexyl Triazone, Niacinamide, Benzotriazolyl Dodecyl p-Cresol, 1,2-Hexanediol, Caprylyl Methicone, Pentylene Glycol, Salvia Hispanica Seed Extract, Centella Asiatica Extract, Portulaca Oleracea Extract, Houttuynia Cordata Extract, Curcuma Longa (Turmeric) Root Extract, Cardiospermum Halicacabum Flower/Leaf/Vine Extract, Tuber Magnatum Extract, Wine Extract, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Oil, Citrus Nobilis (Mandarin Orange) Peel Oil, Echium Plantagineum Seed Oil, Litsea Cubeba Fruit Oil, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Polymethylsilsesquioxane, Caprylic/Capric/Succinic Triglyceride, Ammonium Acryloyldimethyltaurate/VP Copolymer, Propanediol, Saccharide Hydrolysate, Octyldodecanol, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Tromethamine, Hydroxypropyl Methylcellulose Stearoxy Ether, Ethylhexylglycerin, Adenosine, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil Unsaponifiables, Xylitylglucoside, Anhydroxylitol, Xylitol, Tocopherol, Sodium PCA, Glucose, Limonene, Citral.”
Apart from the white truffle extract, the D’Alba sunscreen contains houttynia cordata, centella asiatica and turmeric extract, all three known to be anti-inflammatory and rich in antioxidants. These three extracts can also help calm down redness and balance out excess sebum, as does the sage extract found in this formula. Wine extract is another antioxidant-rich ingredient added to this sunscreen, while niacinamide brightens and supports healthy skin barrier functions. This is a very moisturising sunscreen, which uses the aquaxyl ingredient technology. Basically, it’s a patented technology which helps the humectants in a formula to attract and retain more hydration, plus it can boost the skin’s ability to hold on to moisture more effectively.
Now for the potentially less attractive ingredients: the D’Alba Waterful Sun Cream contains both alcohol/ethanol as well as fragrant essential oils, so if you are very sensitive, be aware of these additions. I didn’t find the alcohol content to be very noticeable, and for me personally it didn’t affect the moisturising capabilities of the overall formula. As for the fragrance: I am usually not bothered by a little bit of fragrance, as long as it isn’t overpowering. The sunscreen smells pleasantly of oranges, a very fresh scent that I enjoy. But, it does mean this one won’t work for people with fragrance allergies or sensitivities, sadly.
This is a chemical sunscreen that uses 5 chemical filters, 4 UVB and one UVA filter: Octinoxate, Homosalate, Octyl Salicylate, Uvinul T 150 and Uvinul A Plus.
D’Alba Waterful Essence Sun Cream SPF50+: Why I Love This Sunscreen so much!
There are a couple of reasons why I consider the D’Alba Waterful Essence Sun Cream to be one of the best Korean sunscreens currently on the market. The main reason, hands down, is its amazing texture! This really feels so lightweight and pleasant on the skin, not at all sticky, greasy or tacky. When I apply the D’Alba sunscreen, it melts into skin so easily and absorbs extra fast, without making me feel like I need to rub this in for ages. The texture actually reminds me of the now out of stock Klairs UV Essence – sadly, one of the sunscreens we lost to the sunscreen scandal. It has the same “essence-like”, non-greasy lightness, feeling basically like a regular moisturiser, and an elegant one at that.
As for the white cast, there is none! Truly, none at all! I am a pale white woman, so I cannot fully guarantee that this will work on darker skin (and sadly I couldn’t find a dark-skinned creator reviewing this sunscreen). But, I am going to be carefully optimistic in saying this should really work for darker skin, as there aren’t any mineral filters here which could cause a white cast.
Apart from the elegance of the formula, I also really appreciate how well this sunscreen reapplies, even over makeup! That melty-watery essence texture just works very well under and over base products, and you don’t get this uncomfortable feeling of “greasing up” your face as a combo-skinned person when reapplying.
The finish of this is dewy, but not overly so. I did feel that my second bottle of this sunscreen, which I only just opened, weirdly enough is a bit richer than the first one. Maybe a slight change in the formula? So, compared to my video review, where I did say oily skin is probably fine with this one, I would actually now say that you may find this just a tad too rich if your skin is very oily. Combo skin, however, will love the moisturising fluid texture, and mature skin definitely fits this antioxidant-rich formula very well. The D’Alba Waterful Essence Sun Cream is also a great sunscreen for dryer skin types, and you will enjoy the moisturising ingredients in this for sure.
So where can you buy the D’Alba Waterful Essence Sun Cream?
You can find this Korean sunscreen at Stylevana*, where the 50ml bottle retails at roughly $25. And Olive Young* is offering a 1+1 set with two 50ml bottles of the D’Alba Waterful Essence Sun Cream for $48 (so $24 per bottle), plus you can get an extra 10% off if you use my coupon code “SUGARPEACH10”! If you are in the US or Canada, you can also purchase this sunscreen on the official D’Alba global website for $36. See if my influencer code “dalba_ULRIKE20” still works, it should give you a 20% discount, hopefully. Or use the official D’Alba shop on Amazon*!
Let me know in the comments: What’s your favourite sunscreen for 2022 so far?
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°PR Sample, kindly provided by a brand or shop – I am not obligated to write this blog article, was not paid for the article, and my opinions are entirely my own.