Protect Ya Neck (And Save Your Face) With These Sunscreens
In addition to giving you that not-at-all-fab lobster look, a day in the sun without sunscreen lotion can contribute to premature aging (from wrinkling to discoloration) and skin cancer. To keep your skin looking radiant and healthy, while you slowly build up a nice, golden tan, make sure to apply a generous amount of sunscreen — and don’t forget to tend to more delicate areas, such as your lips and eyes.
Check out this round-up of the best sunscreens and moisturizers with SPF, so you can bask in the sun’s rays without paying for it later.
Clinique Sun SPF 30 Face Cream, $17.50. Visit Clinique.com
I credit Clinique’s Sun SPF 30 Face Cream for keeping my skin from looking like a George Hamilton-esque disaster during recent day trips to the beach, where I’ve basked in the sun’s beaming rays. The face cream is part of the new Clinique Sun with Solar Smart collection, which is based on a 3:1 ratio of UVB versus UVA protection. The idea here is to ensure a proper amount of UVA protection since researchers now believe that, while, UVB rays are responsible for sunburns, UVA rays are greater culprits in accelerating the aging process.The formula contains: avobenzone, which protect the skin from UVA rays; ethylhexylsalicylate and homosalate, UVB absorbers that prevent sunburns form happening; oxybenzone, which provides broad spectrum protection against UVA and UVB rays; and octocrylene, a water-resistant molecule that stabilizes UVA and UVB protection. In addition to warding off sunburns and premature wrinkling or spotting, I love that this product doesn’t have any adverse results in terms of the clarity of my complexion.
Kiehl’s UV Protective Everyday Facial Moisturizing Sunscreen Cream SPF 15, $29.50. Visit Kiehls.com
Think of this as an invisible veil, shielding you from every type of potentially hazardous sun ray. Kiehl’s UV Protective Everyday Facial Moisturizing Sunscreen Cream SPF 15 includes Parsol 1789 (otherwise known as avobenzone) to guard you from long UVA rays (and, to a lesser degree, short UVA rays), Mexoryl SX (ecamsule) to safeguard you from short UVA rays (as well as provide some protection against long UVA and UVB rays), and Ococrylene to ward off UVB rays. The milky, fragrance-free lotion is extremely lightweight and easily absorbed by the skin, plus it won’t leave your face feeling sticky, oily, or cake-y.
Zo Skin Health Oclipse Sunscreen and Primer SPF 30, $45. Visit ZoSkinHealth.com
I’m currently obsessed with this sunscreen — if it were my student, it would make the Dean’s List (and be the teacher’s pet). Zo Skin Health’s Oclipse Sunscreen and Primer SPF 30 feels nothing like your traditional sunscreen. The air-tight container ensures that the formula isn’t contaminated by exposure to air pollutants while the pump applicator allows you to utilize only the necessary amount. The sunscreen is so lightweight and its consistency so thin, its texture so creamy and light, that it almost feels like whipped cream or margarine when smoothed onto your skin (minus the stickiness of course), making the very application process feel luxurious and indulgent. Containing all-natural melanin, zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, Oclipse protects you from both UVA and UVB rays plus it hydrates, moisturizes and promotes collagen production (thanks to the Lipopeptides in the formula).
Your skin absorbs the substance rather quickly, plus the Oclipse has a creamy brownish tint to it, so you don’t have to worry about that kabuki effect that you can get from so many white, chalky, old-school sunscreens. Because of the tint, the Oclipse can almost function as a foundation of sorts, evening out your skin tone and concealing any imperfections. You can wear it by itself or under your powder, blush, etc., to protect your skin from the sun’s rays — and the best part is this: putting it on won’t even feel like a chore.
Lisa Hoffman Day Cream SPF 15, $45. Visit LisaHoffmanSkincare.com
Packaging is so important when it comes to skincare products. Certain ingredients in moisturizers, cleansers and toners, degrade or become unstable when exposed to oxygen or harmful free radicals. That’s why I do often gravitate towards products that boast air-tight packaging, such as Lisa Hoffman’s Day Cream SPF 15. Ingredients like grape extract and carrot root moisturize and replenish, while lavender oil calms the skin, salicylic acid controls oil production, and peptides contribute to slowing down the signs of aging. Loaded with SPF 15, the Lisa Hoffman Day Cream provides adequate protection for those days when your exposure to the sun is relatively limited.
H2O Plus SPF 30 Face, $30. Visit H2oPlus.com
Broad spectrum sunscreens like oxybenzone, octisalate and avobenzone protect you from the sun’s oppressive rays, while vitamin E, vitamin B and a potent blend of marine ingredients like wakame, sea fennel and sea lettuce moisturize that funny face of yours. One pump of H20 Plus’ SPF 30 Face is plenty to cover your whole face. Like most sunscreens, it’s not particularly appealing on an olfactory level (and it is white and rather thick and creamy like the old-school Coppertone and Hawaiian Tropic products), but it does do the trick.
SLEEKskin Skinblock Defend SPF 30, $49.95. Visit SLEEKMedSpa.com
The SLEEKskin Skinblock Defend SPF 30 moisturizes and infuses your skin with antioxidants thanks to ingredients like green tea, aloe and lipoic acid, while titanium oxide and octinoxate block the sun’s UVA/UVB rays, and argireline wards off visible aging signs. An ocean mist-like spray, you’ll actually want to spritz this refreshing, watery sunscreen over and over again as you lay (or play) in the sun.
Coppertone NutraShield Faces Sunscreen Lotion SPF 70, $10.99. Visit Drugstore.com
First, let’s separate fact from fiction. Yes, this is the highest SPF factor Coppertone has ever granted any of its products. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean your skin will be any safer, as researchers have discovered than anything above SPF 30 will only provide 1-2% more UVB protection (it’s also important to point out that no universal measure for UVA rays currently exists). What is, particularly interesting, however, is that this product focuses on more than just blocking the sun. Unlike the sunscreens of yore, Coppertone’s NutraShield Faces feels rather lightweight and it doesn’t clog the pores, plus it’s packed with antioxidants meant to nourish skin and promote a more youthful appearance. If you’re going for a less expensive sunscreen lotion, this one should be among your top picks.
Prescriptives All-Weather Friend Daily UVA/UVB Sun Protection SPF 40, $26.50. Visit Prescriptives.com
Titanium dioxide wards off UVA/UVB rays in Prescriptives’ All-Weather Friend, but there are other interesting ingredients in this product such as caffeine, which according to some recent studies may inhibit skin cancer by causing UV-damaged cells to die (as opposed to remaining in the skin untreated and morphing into cancerous cells). Another unique ingredient is turmeric extract, which acts as a natural antioxidant and which some scientists believe could potentially ward off cancer.
Patricia Wexler M.D. Daily Defense Anti-Oxidant Tinted Moisturizer SPF 30, $29.50. Visit BathAndBodyWorks.com
Like all of Wexler’s moisturizers, her Daily Defense Anti-Oxidant Tinted Moisturizer features her patented MMPi 20 technology, which uses MMPis to inhibit MMPs or matrix metalloprotenaises, enzymes that break down collagen and hinder collagen production, thus accelerating the skin aging process. Exposure to UV rays can activate MMPs, which is why it’s sai that sun exposure can lead to premature signs of aging. Wexler takes all these factors into account with her tinted moisturizer, which includes antioxidants that nourish the skin and protect it from free radicals, SPF protection to shield us from damaging sunlight and MMPis to repair the skin and give it a smooth texture and youthful glow. Available in 3 different shades (light, medium and deep), this tinted moisturizer relies on micronized pigments to provide a smidgen of color.
Kiss My Face “Sun Swat” Sun Screen & Natural Insect Repellent, $12.95. Visit KisMyFaceWebstore.com
My son’s been getting attacked by mosquitoes every time we hit the park or the playground and since that’s my little king right there, it makes me beyond livid to see his little arms covered in bug bites. Yes, mama be wantin’ to knock those bugs out! So, recently, I resorted to Kiss My Face’s botanical, DEET- and paraben-free Sun Swat Sun Screen & Natural Insect Repellent, spraying the clear oil onto his arms and legs to protect him from the sun and keep bugs at bay. Not only did Sun Swat safeguard my lil’ man from pesky insects and harmful sun rays, but I found that it smells way better than most bug repellents. I mean, it’s not the yummiest scent, since it’s still a bit musky, like lemon mixed with chamomile and oat bran, but it does run circles around the alternatives.
Rock & Republic Classic Tinted Primer SPF 20, $46. Visit Nordstrom.com
When you first dab on this tinted primer, you might be caught off-guard. One pump will release a pea-sized amount of what, at first glance, appears to be a rather thick, foundation-like substance. But, as we all know, appearances are deceiving because, as you spread the primer across your face, you’ll notice it has a rather gentle, mousse-like texture that makes it easy to glide across the skin. Unlike so many primers, it doens’t leave a caked-on, mask-like look, but instead blends into the skin, providing just the right amount of coverage to conceal imperfections and even out your tone. Plus, it absorbs any oil on the skin’s surface, so you don’t have to worry about looking shinier than a crystal ball. Replete with SPF 20 protection, Rock & Republic’s Classic Tinter Primer (which is available in four shades) contains silicone to even out the skin, preparing it for the next stage in the makeup process: the application of loose or pressed powder.
Kiehl’s Ultra Moisturizing Eye Stick, $20. Visit Kiehls.com
The skin around the eyes is very sensitive, requiring extra protection and hydration. So what kind of fool are you if you neglect that area during the day time and then head home at night and pat on expensive eye creams? Ladies, get your minds right. We know that even a minimal amount of sun exposure can lead to premature aging and we’re apprehensive about crow’s feet and wrinkling creeping onto our faces, so why wouldn’t we zealously protect our eyes from the sun’s rays? Shaped like a lipstick, you can glide Kiehl’s Ultra Moisturizing Eye Stick, a creamy, colorless substance, over your lids and under your eyes, and you’ll be nourishing the area with Vitamin E and protecting it with sunblocks like avobenzone, octinoxate, octisalate and octocrylene.
Garnier Nutritioniste Skin Renew Anti-Sun Damage Daily Eye Cream with SPF 15, $9.99. Visit Amazon.com
In Garnier’s Nutririoniste Skin Renew Anti-Sun Damage Daily Eye Cream with SPF 15, Vitamin C, magnesium and lycopene work to replenish moisture to the skin around the eyes, hence smoothing out fine lines and wrinkles, and to diminish the appearance of sun spots. Avobenzone, octisalate and octocrylene, meanwhile, offer protection from UVA/UVB rays. White and slightly milky, the eye cream looks like ordinary sunblock, but feels a bit lighter when applied onto the skin. It does, however, leave the area feeling a bit oily, so use sparingly.
Carita Paris Protecting and Correcting Eye Contour Suncare, $60. Visit CaritaDirect.com
This potent eye cream not only provides UVA/UVB protection, but it moisturizes the eye area to fill in wrinkles and smooth lines, diminishes puffiness and conceals dark circles.If you squeeze a tiny amount onto your fingertip and apply to the eyes, you’ll also notice how the light tint helps to conceal any blemishes or dark circles and how the formula leaves the eye area feeling silky smooth and deliciously moist. When it comes to a designated product for protecting the eye area frm sun exposure, this would be my no. 1 pick.
Kiehl’s Lip Balm SPF 15, $9.50. Visit Kiehls.com
Golden, sunkissed skin won’t up your stock if your lips are chapped or peeling so, before you hit the beach or the park, make sure to pack a potent lip balm — preferably one that offers SPF protection, such as Kiehl’s Lip Balm SPF 15 , available in a clear color like the one pictured above, or in 30G (a Golden Berry shade) or 58B (a Black Raspberry hues).
Nuxe Paris Lip Gloss Prodigieux, $23. Visit Amazon.com
Nuxe Paris’s Lip Gloss Prodigieux has become an absolute must-pack for me. With ingredients like mango butter, sunflower extract, shea butter and sweet almond oil, it moisturizes lips, while also protecting them with vitamin E and SPF 15 sunscreens (avobenzone, titanium dioxide, iron oxide, and octinoxate). But the kicker is the shimmering infusion of color delivered to your now hydrated pout. Available in Natural Crystal (clear), Shimmering Chocolate (a golden brown) or Rose Legendaire (a perky pink), this lip gloss will have you walking on sunshine — just like the Katrina & The Waves song.