Monu Spa ‘Soothing After Sun Lotion’ Review

Yesterday I wrote about a sunscreen, and today it seems only fitting to write about an aftersun. Luckily I received this Monu aftersun in July's Glossybox, and doubly luckily I tried it out a few days ago before the weather took a turn for the worse. I've tried a couple of Monu items in other beauty boxes over the months and I have been impressed by the brand, so I was looking forward to using this cream. My Glossybox card says about this aftersun:

"Holiday companions don't get more useful than this. With the most active form of soothing aloe vera as well as vitamin e and shea butter, this luxurious aftersun cools, hydrates and helps to calm sunned-out skin."


This is a 100ml sample of the aftersun. Full size the cream sells in bottles of 180ml, the best price I could find was £19.95 with free delivery from Based on the cost of the full price item this aftersun is 11p per ml, or £11.08 for the sample.


The aftersun is packaged in a glossy white tube with a glossy white lid, and it looks like it belongs in a spa. The front of the tube has a gold coloured band running down the left hand side with the brand written in white writing. The product is printed in black and gold text. The back of the tube sets out some key features of the aftersun in black text, including its basis on nature, no animal testing and the place of manufacture (UK). The ingredients are printed on the right hand side (below) and there is a description of the item. It says:

"Formulated to soothe and calm the skin after exposure to the sun. This light lotion maintains the skins natural moisture balance and helps to prolong a tan. Aloe Vera to cool skin and reduce inflammation. Shea and cocoa butters to hydrate and promote smooth, supple skin. Vitamin E, a powerful antioxidant, fights free radicals and helps prevent skin ageing."


Aqua (water), caprylic/capric triglyceride, glycerin, glyceryl stearate, stearin acid, butyrospermum parkii (shea butter), aloe barbadensis leaf juice, triethanolamine, cetearyl alcohol, theobroma cacao (cocoa) seed butter, tocopherol acetate, phenoxyethanol, carbomer, imidazolidinyl urea, citrus medica limonum (lemon) peel oil, allantion, bisabolol, disodium EDTA, linalool, citrus aurantium bergamia (bergamot) fruit oil, citrate, methylparaben, butylparaben, ethylparaben, citrus grandis (grapefruit), geraniol, aniba rosaeodora (rosewood) oil, citronellol, eugenol, benzoin acid, cymbopogon schoenanthus (lemongrass) oil.


I squeeze out a small amount of cream at first on to the back of my hand to examine it. The cream is easily dispensed from the tube and holds it form after it has been expelled, it's fairly thick in consistency. The cream doesn't smell anything like I was expecting – I was expecting it to be quite boring but in reality it smells like grapefruit. Not as tangy as a fresh grapefruit, but it's unmistakably grapefruit. It smells utterly delicious, and the fragrance is also quite light so as not to overpower the senses. Rubbing the cream into the back of my hand with my finger the cream feels thinner as I rub, and absorbs into the skin very quickly. Within a matter of minutes my hand is dry, and there is no stickiness or tackiness left behind, although the faint fragrance remains.


Apply liberally to the face and body after exposure to the sun.


I applied the aftersun to my skin after sun exposure. I use the term sun exposure loosely, I was working so I was in the sun a little before work, after work and at lunch on the way to the gym. I applied the lotion to my skin after the shower and was again impressed at how quickly the light formula absorbed. The lotion wasn't as cooling as other after sun lotions I have tried, but then again perhaps if I'd have had longer sun exposure I would have noticed more of a cooling effect. My skin was left hydrated and soft, exactly as I hoped it would.


Overall I really like this aftersun lotion. It's heads and shoulders above any other aftersun lotions I've tried previously in terms of formula for absorbency, but it is also by far the most expensive aftersun lotion I have ever tried, and the price tag is enough to put me off buying it again. It's not that it's not worth the money because it is, the formula is something very special and I'm really impressed with it. It's more that I don't mind being sticky with aftersun to save £10-£15 per a bottle, after all for every two bottles of aftersun the difference would amount to the costs of an eyeshadow palette – and I know what I'd prefer.

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