I'm pretty new to the sunscreen game. When I was younger, I never burned, so sunscreen was the last thing I worried about after a long day at the beach. As I've gotten older, I've started to notice aging due to sun exposure, so I did some research. It turns out there are a ton of unexpected benefits of using sunscreen daily, not just at the pool.
So how do I pick a sunscreen? The sunscreen aisle at the grocery store is so overwhelming with all of the options that advertise a variety of benefits. How do I find a sunscreen perfectly fit for my skin? I know sunscreen is important, but what exactly should I be looking for?
I've learned the first step to finding a great sunscreen is by checking to see if it is a physical or chemical sunscreen. Physical sunscreens start working immediately and last all day, so they are usually the better option. For more information on physical and chemical sunscreens, check out our Insider's Guide to Sunscreen.
Simplicity offers a variety of physical sunscreens from Elta MD that each address different skin concerns. Here is a guide to some of my favorite sunscreens I've tested so you can find the perfect sunscreen.
UV Aero is a full-body SPF 45 sunscreen. It sprays on white to show coverage so you don't miss a spot, but then quickly dries clear. It starts working immediately and is water resistant for 80 minutes. It is oil-free and contains 9.3% transparent zinc oxide. I personally love this one because sunscreen usually makes my skin feel so greasy and gross, but UV Aero is lightweight and actually makes my skin feel awesome. Plus I'm super tall, so having the spray bottle lets me easily apply sunscreen on hard to reach areas to maximize my coverage. This is seriously a MUST for every beach bag and vacation.
I never thought that I'd hear myself say this, but I'm obsessed with this sunscreen. This SPF 40 face sunscreen is light and sheer so it won't feel greasy and oily on your face. It can be used as a daily moisturizer under makeup, or alone as a daily sunscreen for those with dry skin. It has hyaluronic acid to decrease fine lines and increase skin softness and smoothness. My personal favorite is the tinted version of the UV Daily. With its 9% micronized zinc oxide paraben-free formula, it is a great way to moisturize, tint and protect my skin every morning. It has completely replaced my liquid foundation, so I'm actually saving money by using it. It doesn't even feel like I'm applying sunscreen everyday since facial moisturizer is already part of my morning routine.
I'll admit, I'm still waiting for that magical age when I suddenly stop waking up with more acne (wasn't I supposed to ditch zits after puberty ended?). UV Clear is made for sensitive skin prone to acne and flareups. While protecting against the sun with its SPF 46 and 9% micronized zinc oxide formula, it also calms acne, rosacea and hyperpigmentation. It is lightweight and oil-free so you don't need to worry about residue left on the skin. Like UV Daily, this face sunscreen can be used alone or under makeup as a primer.
So these are my three favorites, but I'd love to hear yours! Share your favorites with me on Simplicity's Facebook page. If you want to try out any of these awesome sunscreens, check out the online store or your local Simplicity clinic for a free sample.