If you are spending your summer on the go, it’s easy to forget to apply some SPF before you head out the door. It may not sound very appealing either: Many of the products of yesteryear were greasy, smelly, and left a white cast on your skin.
Despite all this, doctors continue to recommend wearing sunscreen year-round—not just to prevent cancer, but to preserve your skin health and appearance. Fortunately, with just a few small changes, it is easier than ever to slip some sunscreen into your daily routine. Just follow this handful of tips.
Use a make-up primer with SPF
Lucky, it is easier now than ever to sneak some SPF into your daily make-up routine. Many primers and even foundations come with some SFP coverage built-in. Keep in mind, though, the coverage won’t last you all day, and the active ingredients will wear off with time. Still, this is a very easy way to start the day with some coverage with little extra effort.
My top pick:
Dr. Jart’s Color Correcting Treatment with SPF 30. Although it is not marketed as a primer, this product is great to combat redness and rosacea and it looks great under my mineral foundation. (And it did save my face from a sunburn when I sat too long in the sun the other day. My shoulders were not so lucky…)
Try this tinted option from Neutrogena or this affordable “blur and defend” one from Maybelline. Just check for “SPF” on the product label.
Swap out your regular lotion for sunscreen
Another easy way to incorporate SPF without adding extra effort to your daily routine is to switch out your regular lotion or moisturizer with some SPF. Instead of putting body sunscreen on your face, though, try a lotion formulated just for your face; they tend to have a lighter feel, less smell, and are less likely to cause acne and clogged pores. This also makes them easier to reapply throughout the day on top of your make-up.
My top pick:
Many swear by Supergoop, a more expensive brand that is supposed to pair great with your cosmetics, but my favorite is the Aveeno Protect & Hydrate sunscreen face lotion. There is very little scent and it fades away quickly, and it does not feel like I have product sitting on my skin after application.
Neutrogena recently released a daily wear sunscreen line, including this serum, and CeraVe offers a morning face lotion with SPF included. Pregnant women should always be sure to check their skincare ingredients are safe for pregnancy.
Spray on for daily wear
If we are being honest, regularly applying sunscreen lotion all over is a chore. Spray sunscreens go on fast, and as long as you take the time to apply them liberally, offer the same benefits as lotion.
My top pick:
I use the Neutrogena brand, but like with all skincare products, don’t forget to test on your wrist or inner elbow before you apply all over to make sure your skin likes the product.
Spray-on sunscreen is pretty commonly available in generic brands too. Target offers their own formula, as does Wal-mart, and even Trader Joe’s carries it! You can also find spray-on products formulated for your face, as well.
Wear a hat in direct sun
If you are in direct sunlight for work or for play, it is a good idea to add another layer of protection by wearing a hat. This will also protect your hairline and scalp, which can easily burn and is otherwise hard to protect. (You can also try pulling back your hair to help protect your scalp.)
I opt for my favorite baseball cap when doing yard work, but if you are looking for something more glamorous, straw hats are very in vogue right now. I love this affordable option with a beautiful, Victorian-looking bow!
Don’t forget sunglasses!
Not only do sunglasses protect your eyes from harmful rays, they protect the delicate skin around your eyes, too. They also prevent you from squinting too much, sparing you fine lines and wrinkles down the road. Opt for a pair that includes UVA/UVB protection to keep your eyes healthy and strong. And while not all sunglasses are created equal, wearing something is better than nothing. Pro tip: If you need sunglasses with a built-in prescription, I love Warby Parker’s fresh and fashion-forward styles.
If you still want a tan, go faux
Sadly, there is no such thing as a “healthy tan”: Although your skin may not be burnt, a tan is in fact the first sign of skin damage. Still, lots of women prefer a sun-kissed look in the summer months.
There are many self-tanning products on the market today that offer more control and easy use than traditional self-tanners. Self-tanning drops are all the rage at the moment, because they can be customized to your preferred shade. Or, if you are fair (like me) and just want the slightest hint of color, try dusting some bronzer on your cheeks. Plenty of shades are available at your local drugstore, but if you want to try something a little more luxurious, opt for the NARS brand, but mini: This stuff is super pigmented, so the travel size will last you quite a long time!
The benefits of regular sunscreen use are indisputable. Many women would welcome a reduced risk of cancer paired with healthier looking skin in the long term. Thankfully, just a few substitutions and minor adjustments can make this lifestyle change a reality.