Can This UV-Monitoring Patch Really Help Protect Our Skin? We Investigate.

BY Joann Row · May 6, 2017

Joann UV Patch

My first impression of this UV patch was that it was this extremely innovative device that would somehow offer me head-to-toe broad-spectrum sunscreen protection. That may have been a bit of naiveté on my end, since that does seem surrealistically futuristic. I’m the sort of person who really advocates for sun protection but can be a little contradictory in my actions. That means I always apply it on my face– yes, in winter as well–but I often neglect my neck and arms. I do always apply sunscreen on all areas of exposed skin when I’m in a bathing suit. Here’s what happened when I tried this patch over the weekend.

DAY 1 – Saturday 

I made a mistake applying the patch the first time around because I didn’t follow the instructions (oops!). When I did it the second time, it still didn’t lay completely flat but it was definitely placed correctly. What I didn’t expect was how big and bold the patch would be, and that’s not exactly my personal aesthetic.

The app was very easy to find. I just punched in “La Roche-Posay UV Patch” since I didn’t have the patch conveniently near me at the time, and the cutest little icon popped up in my iPhone App Store. The questions were direct and easy to answer, so it only took moments to set up my profile. What I love most about the “’My UV Patch” app is the look of it. The icon is this pixelated heart, reminiscent of a gemstone, and in this very serene blue color. Also, the initial greeting questions are fairly basic and non-intrusive, which I always appreciate.

UV Patch App

The sunscreen I used on my face was La Roche-Posay Anthelios 30 Cooling Water-Lotion Sunscreen SPF 30. This was my first time trying this product and it met all my expectations for sun protection. I’m choosey when it comes to sunscreen, since a lot of them leave a white cast and can either feel chalky or sticky on my skin. This one had a light, pleasant scent, was very easy to apply and finished completely sheer.

On the first day, I wore the patch out to Abbot Kinney in Venice, running errands around Redondo Beach and did some cleaning around my naturally lit condo. My place receives a lot of sunlight through a window scape in the living room, and two patio entrances. I scanned my patch every 30 minutes to an hour until 8 pm and surprisingly, the app told me my “daily UV dose is still fully charged!” There wasn’t a lot of sun today but I did think that the app would direct me to apply some sun protection. I had not applied any sunscreen on that area of my wrist all day.

DAY 2 – Sunday 

On the second day, the weather was not ideal – rain, fog, the works – so I stayed in and just tidied up around my place. I did attempt to check my app a few times but due to the lack of natural light, the app was not able to detect the patch.

DAY 3 – Monday 

The third day had me moving around quite a bit. Even though I went to work, I had my patch on my left wrist so it received sun exposure during my commute alone. I also went out to lunch and walked around a bit looking at flowers. Every time I checked the app, it looked like my sun protection was still up to date.

I actually never had to apply sunscreen on my wrist and I found that a bit odd. I had not applied any sunscreen on my wrist and I thought with the sun exposure, it would remind me to apply and reapply.


I think this app and patch can be very helpful if you are experiencing prolonged sun exposure. It could come in really handy while you’re on a hike or vacationing in a tropical, sunny area. As for day-to-day use, unless you work outdoors, I don’t see it as a necessary addition.

I loved my La Roche-Posay Anthelios 30 sunscreen! I only used it on my face but I would definitely use it on my entire body during summer. It was this perfect, lightweight texture and blended right onto my skin. I’m always relieved when I come across a sunscreen that doesn’t leave a white cast or any residue on my skin – that combination is surprisingly rare.

After this experience, I have learned that sunscreen may not be a necessary addition to the whole body if you’re indoors for the majority of the day (according to my app results). I do believe that face sun protection is essential every day. Also, sunscreen should be applied to any exposed skin if you’re under the sun for a prolonged period of time.

Don’t forget, sun damage is the leading cause of aging skin, and none of us want that!

Joann Row

Born and raised in sunny Southern California, Joann Row developed her professional writing chops in the world of local news, but soon the fashion and beauty industry came calling. She was a longtime content contributor to several Forever 21 campaigns... Read More >