You know the risks: premature ageing, skin damage and the most common of all, cancer. Luckily, when it comes to protecting our skin from the sun’s unforgiving rays, greasy lotions and white residue are a thing of the past. Nowadays a wide variety of products – encompassing skincare, haircare, makeup, even clothing and accessories – have incorporated a sun protection factor (SPF) into their formulas, making it easier than ever to protect our bodies and prevent the damage.

But before we get to the good part, let’s clear up two common misconceptions: skincare and makeup products with SPF shouldn’t replace your daily sunscreen – the amount of serum, cream and makeup you apply is usually minimal, and while it’s a good complement to your skincare regimen, the level of protection won’t suffice on its own, so always layer your sunscreen over your skincare products and under your makeup.

Also, know that SPFs can’t be added up. In other words, if you apply an SPF 30 moisturiser along with an SPF 30 sunscreen, you’re getting additional layers of protection against the sun, but not the double amount of SPF defence.

Skincare Multitaskers

Again, wearing your skincare products and a separate sunscreen is always recommended, but the truth is we can all be lazy or in a hurry at times and skip it. This is where a moisturiser-sunscreen hybrid saves the day, as it’s always best to apply a moisturiser with SPF than no SPF at all – just make sure you’re reapplying every few hours as you would with sunscreen, and remember the most-forgotten areas such as your eyelids and ears. 

The newest SPF 50 moisturiser by Glow Recipe has all the best properties of a moisturising lotion, like hyaluronic acid to hydrate skin and niacinamide to brighten and even skin tone. Add to that chemical and mineral sunscreen ingredients for protection, and your skin will be good to go.

Another good hybrid to consider is sunscreen in the form of serum. Especially if you pick one containing your favourite nourishing ingredients such as vitamin C, vitamin E, niacinamide, zinc oxide or other antioxidants, you’ll have a dual-action product that saves you time and prevents sun damage. Pacifica’s Sea & C Sheer Serum with vitamin C, sea minerals and SPF 55, brightens skin and protects against UVA/UVB and blue light.

Sunscreen DIY

If you can’t find an SPF-laced serum or moisturiser that rivals your favourite non-SPF product, just apply a few drops of these hydrating sun drops with SPF 50 directly to your face after your skincare regimen, or mix them with your regular products before applying to make them sun-safe.

Remind Yourself To Reapply

For those bright summer days at the beach or by the pool, we’re assuming (and truly hoping!) you’re already applying sunscreen everywhere – but if you’re like us, then the trouble comes when it’s time to reapply. Enter SPOTMYUV Detection Stickers. Just tack one of these UV-sensing, waterproof stickers on your skin and coat it with your favourite sunscreen. When you’re covered, the sticker will turn clear, but when the SPF has worn off, it darkens to purple, letting you know it’s time to reapply. No excuses now!

Damage-Free Scalp & Hair

Now that we’ve covered face and body (with SPF, obviously), it’s time to get our heads in the game – because scalp sunburn can be extra-painful. UV rays make your hair look brittle and dried, while the scalp is just as susceptible to skin cancer as any other skin area. Luckily, there are tons of products, from scalp powders and hair serums to dry shampoos and leave-in conditioners, that include a sun protection factor to cover those needs. For example, this refreshing Coola scalp and hair mist has SPF 30, is water-resistant and protects hair from UV-related colour fade, while the Supergoop mineral powder with SPF 45 works as a dry shampoo with the added value of protecting hair from sun damage.

Of course, for those who prefer to keep their hair care routine to a minimum, a trusty (and stylish!) sun hat or cap will always do the trick. Pick one with a wide brim to shade your face and eyes as well.

Sun-Safe Makeup Routine

Whether you wear makeup on a daily basis or just a few times a week, choosing SPF-infused products will bring an additional layer of protection – and when it comes to protecting the skin, more is always more. 

Start by prepping your skin with a protective primer, like this 3-in-1 primer (and moisturiser) from Live Tinted. It not only has SPF 30, but also zinc oxide and anti-inflammatory ingredients for healthier-looking skin. 

When your canvas is ready, try this lightweight foundation with a broad spectrum of SPF 30 that protects against UVA and UVB rays, as well as offering a blue-light filter to minimise damage from your devices. If you need to focus on the under-eye area, a hydrating concealer with sun protection will also go a long way towards preventing wrinkles. This high-end concealer with SPF 27 is a makeup artists’ favourite, while this more affordable option will do the job for a third of the price. 

While we’re focusing on protecting our faces, we often forget about the lips, which are just as susceptible to the sun’s rays as the rest of the body. Luckily there are lip balms, lipsticks and even lip plumpers with a decent dose of SPF – for example, this tinted lip balm boasts a dose of SPF 30 as well as natural moisturising ingredients. 

When your makeup’s all done, set it with a brush-on translucent powder. This Ilia Beauty SPF 20 Powder nourishes and softens skin, protects against blue light and contains no allergens – not to mention it doesn’t leave a cakey finish, and it’s super easy to reapply on the go, which, as we’ve established, is critical.

Stay Safe And Stylish

Clothes are of course the best shield against the sun’s rays, but as it happens, not all fabrics are made the same. The Skin Cancer Foundation specifically recommends wearing clothes in dark or bright colours, as well as thicker fabrics such as denim and wool, and more loose-fitting pieces instead of tight clothing – all of which will absorb UV rays instead of letting them penetrate and reach the skin. 

If you want extra peace of mind, consider brands that build additional sun protection right into the fabrics of their clothing. In this case, the sun-safe metric is referred to as the Ultraviolet Protection Factor (UPF), which differentiates from SPF in that UPF measures the amount of UV radiation that penetrates fabrics. An item with UPF 50, for example, allows only 1/50th (or 2%) of the sun’s UV rays to pass through. 

More and more brands are including UPF in their designs, such as Outdoor Voices’ SolarCool collection which offers quick-drying and lightweight fabrics with fun patterns, comfy fits and, most importantly, UPF 50 protection – perfect for any outdoor activity. Meanwhile, Cabana Life’s swimwear collection for the entire family also blocks 98% of UVA and UVB rays, and Helen Kaminski’s label features plenty of sun-protective pieces in the form of chic hats.

Another good option, if you don’t want to buy a whole new sun-safe wardrobe, is to make your existing closet more protective. SunGuard Laundry Aid gives regular clothing its day in the sun by washing an invisible UPF shield right into your clothes. Just add one package to a load of laundry, and you’ll have UPF 30 protection for up to 20 washings – plus, it won’t ruin the fabric or make the colours fade. 

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