Rachel Marie Walsh suggests quality sunscreens that will ensure we don’t leave this most powerful anti-ageing element out of our skincare regime.
SPF cream gives me spots
Any cream that makes you break out is likely to be too emollient for your skin type. Oil-free protectors like SkinCeuticals Sheer Mineral UV Defense SPF50, €37, won’t clog pores or exacerbate acne.
The formula creates a nice soft-matte finish and has a light, silky texture that works well under makeup. Alternatively, you could layer SPF-enriched cosmetics and skip the cream altogether.
A gel-like base like bareMinerals Prime Time Daily Defense SPF30, €29, topped with regular applications of bareMinerals Ready SPF 20 Powder Foundation, €26, throughout the day keeps skin protected and perfectly matte.
My sun protection causes dryness
Again, the formula is not right for your skin. Alcohol-rich SPF creams, for example, may absorb quickly but can cause dryness and irritation. Murad Essential-C Sun Balm SPF30, €19.50, has a smooth texture and is super-easy to blend.
The formula is alcohol-free and loaded with anti-oxidants and lightweight emollients. The handy twist-up stick is perfect for travel and keeps the ingredients stable. If skin is extremely dry, try richer formulas like the Olay and Clinique options below.
The white-ish cast ruins my makeup
Some sunscreen ingredients can alter your makeup shade and only the most porcelain-skinned lady is comfortable in zinc-oxide white! Estee Lauder DayWear Advanced Multi-Protection SPF50, €48.50, is my favourite solution to this problem.
The formula is richer in proven antioxidants and reparative extracts than many moisturizers in this price range. It suits all skin types and the opaque tube keeps the ingredients stable. This silky cream looks radiant alone and improves the look of anything you smooth on top.
If your favourite makeup says SPF on the label, remember that this is only an indication of UVB protection. Check that the product provides broad-spectrum (UVA and UVB) coverage and layer up with products like DayWear Advanced if the rating falls below 25.
I can’t bear the smell
Clinique SPF creams are all fragrance-free and excellent. Clinique City Block Sheer Daily Face Protector SPF25, €23, may be too emollient for acne-prone skin but it provides robust protection and a slight tint to offset the blanching effect of mineral sunscreens. Clinique Sun Protection Face Cream SPF30, €23,suits all skin types.
Bioderma Photoderm Sensitive Creme SPF50+, €18.50, provides strong but gentle protection without perfume. Additional natural ingredients minimise the risk of irritation and the light, smooth texture creates an excellent base for makeup.
My skin is so sensitive!
Some sunscreen actives can bother sensitive skin, so look out for broad-spectrum products that employ zinc oxide and/or titanium dioxide to both stave off UV damage and minimise the risk of irritation. These ingredients are also ideal if your current protection bothers your eyes or stings when you work out.
Brands that blend one or both of them with soothing and reparative extracts offer more benefits for your buck. Cover FX CC Cream Time Release Tinted Treatment SPF30, €48.30 @beautybay.com, offsets redness and contains effective quantities of anti-ageing ingredients like niacin and liquorice root.
I spend too much time/money on my skin as it is
Recent research suggests UV damage can cause up to 95 per cent of the visible signs of skin ageing, so broad-spectrum sun protection could be the best anti-wrinkle cream you own.
For convenience’ sake, swap your day cream for an SPF moisturizer that suits your skin type and seek out good supermarket options you can snap up with the weekly shop.
Olay Regeneriste 3-Point Super Firming Cream SPF30, €37.39, is a great option for normal-to-dry skin. The formula is rich in ingredients that support new collagen growth and the repair of skin’s natural moisture barrier (niacinamide, vitamin C, green tea...). A smattering of peptides encourages skin-cell turnover.
Laura Mercier Paint Wash Liquid Lip Colour, €30
Liquid lipstick, or lip lacquer, is nothing new but Laura Mercier’s created something exceptional in Paint Wash.
This is easily my favourite lip product of the year to date. You may raise an eyebrow at the price but the formula is truly long-wearing, surviving drinking and other coat-threatening activities without a smudge. Touch-ups should not be included in your cost-per-wear calculation.
The ten-strong range of berries, pinks, reds and nudes includes something for every complexion. All set to a demi-matte finish bar the shimmery “Golden Peach.” Each shade is richly-pigmented and gives you hours of strong colour.
Despite the formula’s tenacity, the liquid is non-drying and rich in emollients that leave lips plumped and velvety soft.
In short, a tube of Paint Wash is the only lipstick you’ll need this summer.
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