Product Review: L’oreal UV Perfect [XL Block]


I always love a good sunblock. L’oreal UV Perfect [XL Block] caught my eye as it claimed to offer some revolutionary features, including:

– UVA/UVB protection for 12 hours
– Antioxidant protection with its white lily and nut extract
– Doubling as a make-up base, with 3 different tints to choose from

From my previous post on sunblocks, you may recall that sunblocks must be reapplied every 4 hours. Hence, a sunblock which can provide 12 hours of unaltered sun protection is a breakthrough indeed!

Mexoryl SX & Mexoryl XL

The star ingredients in L’oreal sun protection are Mexoryl SX & XL, chemically stabilized forms of Avobenzone (a broad spectrum chemical sunscreen) which provide broad spectrum UVA and UVB protection. Mexoryl, which received FDA approval in 2006, is found only in L’oreal products.

The manufacturer states that Mexoryl is photo-stable for up to 24 hours after application onto the skin; implying that all you need is one application a day.

What I Like About L’oreal UV Perfect [XL Block]

With its different tints (Purple for an ‘anti-dullness’ effect, and skin coloured for uneven skin tone) and antioxidant protection, L’oreal UV Perfect [XL Block] has pushed the boundaries of sunblock, very much like how BB Creams added a new dimension to comestic products. Hence, it can be used as a make-up base and moisturizer as well!

The texture is light and silky – another appealing aspect. Many sunblocks tend to feel sticky after application, and leave a white sheen on the face, properties which many do not like.

The product contains both physical (titanium diode) and chemical sunscreens, thus offering good broad spectrum UV protection.


While Mexoryl is indeed one of the great breakthroughs in sun protection in the past decade, despite what manufacturers say, it WILL degrade in the sun, albeit at a slower rate than its parent compound Avobenzone. Hence, reapplication is still crucial to ensure adequate sun protection, and for best results, reapplication 4 hourly is encouraged.

The light texture is a double-edged sword. Sunblock works optimally only if you apply enough of it. The ‘SPF 50’ stated on the product insert only applies if you use 2mg/cm2 of product, that makes out to be half a tea spoon for the face. The fluid nature of the product will invariably encourage users to put on less than they should, thus compromising on sun protection.


All in all, this is a good product, and I would recommend it for everyday use. However if you have existing pigmentary conditions, especially melasma, this product does not offer enough sun protection.

In my opinion, manufacturer’s overly optimistic marketing campaign may mislead the public into using less sun protection than they should, doing more harm than good.


  1. Hi Vivien, <br /><br />This product is quite safe for oily skin. Having said that, everyone&#39;s skin is different, so you may wanna get your doctor to examine you first! <br /><br />Regards, <br />Dr Siew