10/10 Recommend

Glow Recipe’s Dew Balm Is A Top-Tier SPF That Feels Like A Serum


The Glow Recipe Watermelon Glow Dew Balm is everything I could ever want in an SPF. Read on for an h...
10/10 Recommend
We may receive a portion of sales if you purchase a product through a link in this article.

’Tis the season for sun-kissed days and the SPF-drenched complexions that come along with them. If I’m being honest, though, the list of sunscreens I personally like using is pretty slim — especially when it comes to my face.

As someone with sensitive skin that’s quite fair — and a total makeup lover who typically wears a light beat, even on the beach — my sunscreen truly needs to do it all. Namely, it has to have hydrating or soothing benefits, never leave a white cast, wear well under (and over) makeup, and of course, have enough SPF that can really protect my skin from sun damage (any dermatologist will tell you that you better be wearing 30 or higher every day!)

If you, like me, have high standards for your sunscreen, look no further, because I may have just found your new summer essential.

Meet the Glow Recipe Watermelon Glow Dew Balm SPF 45 ($30), which officially launched at the end of April 2024. In the mere month since it hit shelves, it’s quickly become a cult favorite (just like the brand’s buzzy bronzing drops that came out earlier this year).

I mean it when I say this is unlike any sunscreen on the market. It’s a juicy, serum-like stick that effortlessly glides onto the skin and provides the same plump and dewy finish as the brand’s beloved Dew Drops. Plus, it’s got sun protection.

If that’s not convincing enough, read on to see why this launch has me completely obsessed.

Fast Facts

  • Price: $30
  • Best For: Moisturized sun protection, without the unwanted white cast
  • Rating: 10/10
  • What I Love: This barely-there SPF feels like a juicy skin serum and adds the prettiest dewy glow to my complexion

The Watermelon Glow Dew Balm

Akin to the brand’s hero product — Watermelon Glow Niacinamide Dew Drops ($35) — Glow Recipe’s Watermelon Glow Dew Balm SPF 45 is a hydrating serum that aims to nix dry, dull, and uneven skin.

The clear formula comes in an easy-to-use stick format and is meant to be applied directly to the face and neck. It’s gentle enough that you can also use it around your sensitive under-eye area, which is important given that this spot is at a heightened risk for sun damage.

It offers broad-spectrum SPF 45 protection, which means that it protects against both UVA and UVB rays.

Key Ingredients

  • Niacinamide: This powerhouse skin care ingredient improves the look of fine lines, lessens the appearance of dark spots, helps control sebum production, and brightens the complexion.
  • Hyaluronic Acid: This humectant is beloved for its skin-plumping abilities, and provides instant hydration while soothing the complexion.
  • Squalane: One of skin care’s buzziest ingredients, this vegan multi-tasker is known to be deeply moisturizing, heal the sensitive skin barrier, act as an anti-inflammatory, and beyond.
  • Watermelon Seed Oil: When present in skin care, this antioxidant-and-vitamin-rich ingredient boosts moisture and helps reduce inflammation.

It Was Love At First Swipe

To truly determine just how good a sunscreen product is, I like to test it when I’m in the heat of the sun (and ideally diving in and out of the water). I tried the Dew Balm on a recent trip to Puerto Rico — which ticked both of these boxes — and it quickly became my new favorite thing.

Ahead of a morning surfing lesson, I applied the serum-sunscreen hybrid directly onto clean skin, using my hands to fully pat in the product. Because the formula is crystal-clear, there is zero possibility of that annoying AF white cast. It felt so lightweight that the only indication that I had anything on at all was my skin’s new-found hydrated shine.

For me to truly give a sunscreen my stamp of approval, it not only has to perform well underneath my foundation, but it also has to work for re-application on top of my daily “no makeup” makeup looks. Right away, the Dew Balm did just that.

My skin tint, concealer, and powder products blended in without a single sign of pilling or caking. In fact, the SPF sort of acted as a moisturizing primer, making my application that much more flawless and smooth.

When it came time to re-apply, I was pleased to discover that my makeup didn’t budge — the sunscreen layered easily on top and gave my skin a little boost of shine. One thing to note: While the product worked just fine on top of a light-coverage skin tint, I’d be wary about using it over a heavy-duty foundation — on those days, I’d likely opt for an SPF-infused setting spray instead.

Never Discontinue This SPF, Please

After a few hours of surfing in the ocean, lounging on the beach, and doing all of the other sun-drenched activities that come along with a tropical vacation, I came home with a subtle tan that didn’t look burnt in the slightest (which is saying a lot, considering my face hasn’t seen the sun since last summer). What’s more, the SPF stick was *so* easy to reapply throughout the day without disturbing my ultra-light makeup, and gave me a radiant, wet-looking, siren-esque glow of dreams.

Dear Glow Recipe, you truly left no crumbs with this formula — there are no notes from me. I just beg of you to never, ever discontinue this SPF. Thanks in advance.