Answer: La Roche Posay markets Hydraphase UV SPF 30 in both Canada and the US. But what you get are two very different formulations depending on where you purchase it.
In the US, Hydraphase UV SPF 30 is a moisturizer plus SPF 30 sun protection that contains these active ingredients:
- Octocrylene 7%,
- Avobenzone 3%,
- Octisalate 5%
Plus Glycerin, a moisture attracting ingredient.
While all 3 active ingredients are indeed sun filters, the US version of Hydraphase UV does not contain any Mexoryl, the photostable sun filter that is patented by L’Oreal, the company that owns La Roche Posay.
In Canada, Hydraphase UV SPF 30 is also marketed as a moisturizer with SPF 30 sun protection. However this version contains Mexoryl SX as well as the following active sun filters:
- Octinoxate 7.5%
- Mexoryl SX 4.0% (chemical name terephtha-lylidene dicamphor sulphonic acid)
- Titanium dioxide 2.5%
The Canadian version also includes Glycerin and sodium hyaluronate, a patented moisture binding complex that is a boon for dry, dehydrated skin.
Why the difference?
Though Mexoryl SX was approved for use in the US by the FDA in 2006, so far it can only be used in products with a maximum SPF of 15. And while La Roche Posay does manufacture a sunscreen plus moisturizer for the US market (Anthelios SX), it only contains an SPF of 15.
You’ll find that the US versions – either Hydraphase UV SPF 30 or Anthelios SX – are slightly less expensive, but then you won’t be getting the same amount of protection afforded by Hydraphase UV SPF 30 purchased from Canada.�