Home
Verdict: 
A clean, effective and non-greasy suncream that beats the burn
Weight: 
206g
Contact: 

Pelotan describes its SPF30 suncream as a 'high performance sun protection to meet the needs of cyclists from professional athletes to weekend club riders', and as far as I can tell it lives up to the marketing spiel. It performs well, offering lasting sun protection, has a non-greasy application, and strong environmental credentials.

  • Pros: Clean to apply and non-greasy, no reapplication required, doesn't mark kit
  • Cons: Quite pricey, only available as SPF30

While some might see preserving their tan lines – keeping them crisp and sharp – as the main objective of a summer ride, no one wants to burn, and protecting your skin from UV rays is extremely important for your health. A good suncream is as vital in your cycling kitbag as your chamois cream.

> Buy this online here

At SPF30, Pelotan offers a mid-level of protection, a good 'mass market' option for the majority of riders. However, if you're prone to burning or of a fairer complexion, you might need to look for something a little stronger. I used the spray on a few long days in the Italian Alps, with temperatures hitting around 25°C at the sun's peak. Having applied the cream once, as per the brand's recommended 'dose', I did not burn at all and returned from the trip with a pleasing bronze hue to my skin.

It's currently only available in this SPF30 strength, which seems a bit of a shame – although sunscreen numbers aren't as straightforward as you might think, as Mat discusses in his feature on protecting your skin from the sun. And as a very new brand (indeed, it's currently crowdfunding to seek additional investment), perhaps other protection factors will become available over time.

Some suncreams can be a little greasy when applied, but Pelotan is nice and thin and clear. It rubs into the skin easily and doesn't leave your hands feeling slippery and oily, or create tide marks where it comes into contact with your kit immediately after application.

This makes Pelotan a product you could carry in a bag or even a jersey pocket on a particularly long and scorching ride, as you won't end up spreading grease on your bar/hoods or on your kit after a mid-ride application. Not that you're likely to need to: Pelotan claims that this is an 'apply once' spray that lasts up to eight hours and is sweat proof, so re-application shouldn't be necessary unless in the most extreme of conditions.

pelotan_spf30_-_detail.jpg

I only applied it once on my test rides, where, as I said, the temperature reached around 25 degrees and the skies were clear and sunny. I didn't notice the need to re-apply it, with my skin never feeling greasy to suggest the cream was being 'sweated off'.

It's also good to note that the spray is also marketed as being waterproof, so it should last through any summer showers you may be unlucky enough to encounter.

> How to avoid sunburn while cycling

Pelotan is environmentally friendly and ethical, with a strict no-animal testing, preservative-free policy. It's also dermatologically tested, so even if you have sensitive skin you should be safe from any irritation or itches. I certainly had no issues.

The sports-specific suncream market is relatively small, so there are few direct competitors to Pelotan in terms of price. Of those there are, some are more expensive, such as this SPF30 product from Ultrasun, which is £14 for 100ml, while the more widely available SPF50 Ambre Solaire UV Sports Spray offers both high UV protection and better value at £8.50 for 200ml.

Compared with long-lasting non-sport-specific suncreams Pelotan isn't bad value either: P20's SPF30, for example, is £24.99 for a 200ml bottle.

Overall, Pelotan seems a good product, if a little pricey perhaps, and only available as an SPF30 option.

Verdict

A clean, effective and non-greasy suncream that beats the burn

If you're thinking of buying this product using a cashback deal why not use the road.cc Top Cashback page and get some top cashback while helping to support your favourite independent cycling website

road.cc test report

Make and model: Pelotan SPF30

Size tested: 200ml

Tell us what the product is for

Pelotan says, "Pelotan is high performance sun protection to meet the needs of cyclists from professional athletes to weekend club riders. The product has been designed from the ground up specifically for cyclists as 'once a day', water and sweat resistant sun protection, allowing you to stay in the saddle longer, perfecting those ultra-sharp tan lines from sunrise to sunset."

Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?

From Pelotan:

UVA & UVB sunfilter

Only one application per day required - 8 hour protection

Quick drying and not white marks

Water and sweat resistant

Rate the product for performance:
 
8/10

I rode with Pelotan for a weekend in Italy, where temperatures reached 25°C, and did not burn. The spray was nice and clean to apply and rub in, and left no marks on my kit. I didn't notice my skin feeling particularly greasy when sweating, suggesting that the spray didn't get 'sweated off'.

Rate the product for value:
 
6/10

£20 for a 200ml bottle of suncream is a fair amount, but it's a good investment if you're prone to burn. There aren't many sports-specific suncreams around, but of those I found, Pelotan sits in the middle of the price range.

Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose

It was excellent. It protected my skin from burning during some long rides in midday June Italian sun, and I did not feel the need to re-apply it.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

The clean application and lack of residue on kit is a real bonus if applying soon before a ride, and that it doesn't seem to 'sweat off' is a real bonus.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

Nothing really.

Did you enjoy using the product? Yes

Would you consider buying the product? Yes

Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes

Use this box to explain your overall score

It's a good product that does what it promises, though it's a little pricey.

Overall rating: 7/10

About the tester

Age: 31  Height: 6ft 1in  Weight: 61kg

I usually ride: Giant TCR / Cannondale Supersix  My best bike is: Giant TCR

I've been riding for: Under 5 years  I ride: Every day  I would class myself as: Expert

I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, club rides, sportives, general fitness riding

8 comments

Avatar
nbrus [585 posts] 4 months ago
1 like

Check out Aldi where you can buy SPF50 sun cream for £1.99 ... and it will be the same as the big brands as its likely made by one of them.

Avatar
madcarew [858 posts] 4 months ago
1 like

Be advised, it is possible the SPF50 is made by one of the big guys, but it is unlikely. However it will be subject to the same regulations and standards as the big ones..... which is none whatsoever. 

Suncream is considered a cosmetic and as such there are no regulations or standards which have to be met regarding claims as to effectiveness etc, which includes the SPF factor. So buy the cheapest which has ingredients you do or don't like, but understand it is possible and (according to consumer surveys in NZ) likely no more effective than water. 

Avatar
Drinfinity [109 posts] 4 months ago
1 like

Whilst we are still in the EU, labelling of sunscreen has to represent its efficacy, and the Eur-lex  provides standard test methods. 

Of course,  wearing sunscreen makes me stay out in the sun for longer, so probably I’m at greater risk.  No doubt I should just use my gingerninja skills to dodge those pesky photons. It makes my arms thicker too, so more chance the sunlight will hit me.

 

https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?qid=1530305457508&uri=CELEX:32006H0647

 

Anyway, Pelotan is a spectacular pun in search of a product. The only thing that makes it expensive is the profit. 

Avatar
Rouleur126 [5 posts] 4 months ago
1 like

I cycled in Provence last year with extreme UV levels (11) and didn't burn. The sunscreen I used was Sunsense Ultra SPF 50+. A friend of mine had a few patches of skin cancer and was prescribed this product. As far as I am aware, it is the only one actually prescribed in this country (England). Good enough for me!

It's reasonably priced and works very well. Yes, it contains parabens. However, having researched the issues surrounding parabens, the sample size of the experiment people base their concerns on was small and the evidence inconclusive. To me, the benefits of this product far outweigh any concerns. It can mark clothing but washes out.

Sunsense also make a sport gel (SPF50) for hairy arms and legs. It doesn't offer the same degree of protection but it is good enough for most uses.

 

All the Sunsense products are made and tested in Australia.

Avatar
aegisdesign [113 posts] 4 months ago
0 likes

For an alternative, in a handy flat pack that fits in a jersey more easily, I can recommend Decathlon's own brand 50+ cream. https://www.decathlon.co.uk/spf50-sun-cream-50-ml-id_8346874.html

It's £4.99

It's quite thick and needs a good shake. Instructions suggest reapplying every 2 hours but it seems to work longer than that and resists sweat quite well. I had some Ambre Solaire UV Sport also but preferred the Decathlon stuff. 

Test based on cycling 2100km through France and Spain in May, every day for 23 days (minus a few days for rain and sight seeing/wine).

 

 

Avatar
po [4 posts] 4 months ago
0 likes

'I did not burn at all and returned from the trip with a pleasing bronze hue to my skin.'

Unfortunately this is still skin damage

Avatar
StraelGuy [1586 posts] 4 months ago
1 like
po wrote:

'I did not burn at all and returned from the trip with a pleasing bronze hue to my skin.' Unfortunately this is still skin damage

 

True but if you live your life with that kind of attitude you'd spend it under a rock eating macrobiotic beansprouts instead of, you know, doing stuff.

Avatar
rtw [47 posts] 4 months ago
1 like

I got it for free, so price is unimportant in what I am about to write.

I used this for a 9 hour ride on the hottest day of the year at that point. I found it to be effective.

I also found it non-greasy, and pleasant smelling - not like suncreams normally do. More importantly, not once in this ride did I get stinging eyes which in one way or another I normally get from suncream, because at some point some will find its way into my eyes from my fingers or whatever.