The Girl’s Guide to Biking and Baking: LUCA Sunscreen Review

I wouldn’t qualify myself as athletic. Yet every once in a while, I get a hankering to drain myself of every stitch of pent-up energy with a mad dash on my bike through the desert. This time, I had a mission. Well, two really. One was to ride fast enough that should I come across a dozing rattlesnake, I would skate past him before he had the wits to strike. Snake bites can so ruin a perfectly good day. The second was to test a new sunscreen that purports to be the best UVA/UVB protection available. LUCA Intense Solar Protection SPF 30 is water resistant, hypoallergenic and able to make that claim because of its high critical wavelength rating. Critical wavelength is the UVA protection rating. UVA exposure is the major cause of premature aging and is strongly linked to skin cancer. LUCA far supersedes the FDA’s levels of excellent protection and because of its unique formulation, can withstand six hours of intense sunlight. But can it withstand my tyrannical dash through the desert?

LUCA Sunscreen comes in a pump dispenser that easily locks for travel. The lotion is subtly scented and although thick and intensely white like many sun blocks, it blends transparently into the skin leaving it moist to the touch. Not a cloud marred the brilliant sky and the day would likely top out at a 100 degrees as I hopped on my yellow Cannondale and pushed off through the neighborhood. Mile one and I was failing fast (did I mention that I wasn’t very athletic?). Thoughts of what to eat when I got home danced through my head. Three miles down, one snake sighting and I was more than breaking a sweat. Five miles and I’d obviously reached a state of delirium because thoughts of food morphed into actually considering lifting free weights when I got home. Preposterous. And yes, the lyrics of that Susan Vega song, “My Name is Luca,” keep rolling through my head too. Funny thing is, no stinging sweat in my eyes and no chemical taste in my mouth. And when I reached the safety of home, not only was my face NOT bright red but the signs of a sunburn didn’t develop later in the day as they usually do with my regular sun block. This stuff rocked. I may actually ride my bike again soon if I can get through an Arizona summer minus another freckle. LUCA Sunscreen was easy to integrate into my daily regimen and is also available in Daily SPF 15.

Both formulations retail for $30 and are available at

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