dr dennis gross dark spot sun defense sunscreen spf 50

I’ve found the sunscreen I’m gonna be wearing all summer.

It’s so lightweight, I don’t even notice I’m wearing it. It doesn’t pill when I layer foundation on top. And it doesn’t make me look like Caspar The Ghost.

The icing on the cake? It doesn’t keep me safe from UV harm only. This baby fights pollution, too. Meet Dr Dennis Gross Dark Spots Sun Defense Sunscreen SPF 50:

What’s In Dr Dennis Gross Dark Spots Sun Defense Suscreen SPF 50?


Titanium dioxide and zinc oxide are my fave UV filters. These two white minerals are so gentle, even babies older than 6 months can use them. If you’ve been skipping sunscreen because they always irritate your skin, check them out.

They also give you better UV protection. Most chemical UV filters protect you from either UVA or UVB rays. That’s why you need to use 4 or 5 at the same time to reach broad spectrum protection.

Zinc oxide provides broad spectrum protection ON ITS OWN. So why not use it alone? It’s super thick and greasy. Making it share the workload with titanium dioxide is one way to keep the texture lightweight and easy to spread.

FYI, titanium dioxide can protect from all UVB and most UVA rays, making it the perfect partner for Zinc Oxide.

Still, these white minerals are thicker than chemical UV filters and can leave a white cast behind. I don’t know how Dr Dennis Gross Dark Spots Sun Defense Sunscreen SPF 50 did it, but these problems are almost non-existant here (more on this soon).

Related: 3 Reasons Mineral Sunscreens Are Better For Sensitive Skin


I love sunscreens that go the extra mile. Dr Dennis Gross Dark Spots Sun Defense Sunscreen SPF 50 contains Mela-C, an antioxidant complex that fights the free radicals pollution, UV rays and co form when they touch your skin. This complex is made up of:

Related: All The Different Types Of Vitamin C Used In Skincare: Which One Is Best?


Dr Dennis Gross Dark Spots Sun Defense Sunscreen SPF 50 is loaded with natural oils, like safflower and olive oils. These oils are rich in fatty acids that strengthen your skin’s protective barrier, helping to keep it soft and moisturized for hours.

Plus, these oils have their fair share of antioxidants that help fight free radicals and keep your skin younger for longer.

Related: Olive Oil For Skincare: What It Does & How To Use It

Is your sunscreen up to the job? Download your FREE “Sunscreen Audit” cheatsheet to find out if your sunscreen is both safe and effective:


Its texture is thicker than most chemical sunscreens, but incredibly lightweight for a mineral one. It spreads easily on the skin, it doesn’t tag and works well under most foundations – without pilling.


Dr Dennis Gross Dark Spots Sun Defense Sunscreen SPF 50 has a couple of citrus extracts that gave it the faintest summery scent. They’re present in very low amount, so they’re unlikely to cause irritations. But if you’re one of the unlucky few who reacts badly to anything citrusy, you may want to pass on this.

How To Use

It’s the last step of your skincare routine in the morning. You need at least 1/4 of a teaspoon for the whole face. Reapply as needed during the day.

Performance & Personal Opinion

I’ve tried a lot of mineral sunscreens in the past 8 years. I have pale skin so the white cast isn’t a big issue for me. The thicker, hard-to-spread texture bothers me more but I can live with that if it means I get better sun protection.

Dr Dennis Gross Dark Spots Sun Defense Sunscreen SPF 50 has managed to overcome both issues. The texture is fairly lightweight for a mineral sunscreen.

Once it blends into your skin, you can hardly see the white cast at all. The only exception? Darker skintones. You need a mineral sunscreen that’s tinted. Anyone else, NO white cast! Yay!

I apply the recommended 1/4 of a teaspoon every morning (and reapply as needed, of course) and – I kid you not – I feel like I’m not wearing anything.

FYI, I skip moisturizer in the morning. In this weather, my skin isn’t so dry and the natural oils in this sunscreen are enough to keep it soft and moisturized for hours.

I’ve been using it for weeks and never had any issues with burning or anything. Granted, London ain’t no tropical island but I have no doubt that this sunscreen would keep you safe on holiday too – as long as you apply it properly.

Too often, sunscreens fail because you don’t apply enough. That’s why I’m so happy this sunscreen has such an elegant formula. You can pile it on and don’t feel the grease on your skin. I’m stocking up, ladies.

dr dennis gross dark spot sun defense sunscreen spf 50 review

Who Is This For?

Anyone can use it, but it’s more suitable for sensitive skin.

Who Is This NOT For?

If your skin is very dry, mineral filters can dry it out more.


The tube used to be white, now it’s yellow. Either way, it’s both sleek and practical to use.

Does Dr Dennis Gross Dark Spots Sun Defense Suscreen SPF 50 Live Up To Its Claims?

An all-physical sunscreen that helps prevent damage from UVA and UVB rays and aging photo-damage without the use of chemical filters.  True.
This hydrating, anti-aging sunscreen reduces the appearance of dark spots, uneven skin tone, and wrinkles.  It can prevent dark spots, but the skin-lightening agents here are weak. Don’t expect quick results.

Price & Availability

Available at: $42.00/£44.00 at Cult Beauty, Dermstore, Nordstrom and Sephora

Do You Need It?

If you’re looking for a mineral sunscreen that’s not super thick and greasy, this is a good option to consider.

Dupes & Alternatives


Active Ingredients: Titanium Dioxide (4.9%) Zinc Oxide (4.42%) Inactive Ingredients: Water/Aqua/Eau, Glycerin, Isononyl Isononanoate, Pentylene Glycol, Carthamus Tinctorius (Safflower) Seed Oil, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil, C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, Coconut Alkanes, Hydroxyethyl Acrylate/Sodium Acryloyldimethyl Taurate Copolymer, Butylene Glycol, Melatonin, Ascorbyl Glucoside, Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate, Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate, Tocopherol, Nordihydroguaiaretic Acid, Echium Plantagineum Seed Oil, Boerhavia Diffusa Root Extract, Saccharide Isomerate, Sodium Hyaluronate, Phospholipids, Sphingolipids, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Flower Extract, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Extract, Oenothera Biennis (Evening Primrose) Oil, Glycolic Acid, Sodium PCA, Zinc PCA, Oleanolic Acid, Palmitoyl Tripeptide-38, Acrylates/Carbamate Copolymer, Hydrogenated Lecithin, Coco-Caprylate/Caprate, Bis-Ethylhexyl Hydroxydimethoxy Benzylmalonate, Aluminum Hydroxide, Polyhydroxystearic Acid, BHT, PEG-60 Almond Glycerides, Xanthan Gum, Disodium EDTA, Citric Acid, Sodium Citrate, Hydroxypropyl Cyclodextrin, Sodium Hydroxide, Isohexadecane, Caprylyl Glycol, Polysorbate 60, Carbomer, Propanediol, Stearic Acid, Isopropyl Titanium Triisostearate, Tromethamine, Phenoxyethanol, Benzyl Alcohol, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Benzoate, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Oil