Because they're a must-have seven days a week, 365 days a year
Having one of the best SPF moisturisers to hand is a much bigger deal than you might think. Applying it everyday should become second nature, a bit like cleansing.
While the best sun cream is a no-brainer for hot holidays, ultraviolet rays can be damaging on even the cloudiest of days and so a moisturiser with an SPF is in fact a year-round beauty bag essential.
It may not seem like it in gloomy Great Britain, but even in the winter months you need to be slathering on some level of sun protection to stop your skin from getting damaged. If there’s daylight, wear an SPF. With this in mind, we grilled the experts for the need-to-knows and what to look for when SPF shopping.
Is SPF in your moisturiser enough protection?
Some people believe that an SPF moisturiser doens’t offer the same protection as a full-blown sun cream, but the truth is a bit more complicated than that; it’s not the product, but how you apply it.
‘SPF in your moisturiser is tested the same way as SPF in sunscreen, so an SPF 30 moisturiser should provide an SPF of 30,’ says consultant dermatologist Dr Justine Kluk. ‘The main issue is that these formulas are less likely to be rub-resistant and water resistant and may be applied a lot more thinly than sunscreen. For these reasons they may not offer the same level of protection.
‘The British Association of Dermatologists says that moisturiser with an SPF will help protect you against small amounts of UV exposure, such as when you walk to the car or pop outside to hang out the washing, but sunscreen is better suited for longer, more deliberate UV exposure, such as spending your lunch hour outside.
She continues: ‘It’s also worth noting that moisturisers containing an SPF may not contain any UVA protection and as a result will not protect against UV ageing.’
How much SPF should you apply, and how often?
‘In order to actually get the SPF promised by the product we need to apply at least half a teaspoon to face, neck and ears,’ explains Dr Kluk.
‘Ideally, sunscreen should be reapplied every two hours, or more frequently after swimming or heavy perspiration,’ adds facial aesthetics specialist Dr Pamela Benito. ‘Also remember that for adequate protection, the SPF should be 30 or higher for extended time spent outdoors.
As for what to look for on the label? ‘Make sure your sunscreen says “broad spectrum” on the label, which means the product protects against UVA and UVB rays,’ she continues. ‘When used as directed with other sun protection measures, sunscreen decreases the risk of skin cancer and early signs of skin ageing caused by sun damage.’
The best face sunscreen
Or if you’re 100% dedicated to your current moisturiser, which doesn’t have an SPF, then you could invest in a UV shield, like this Skinceuticals one. A UV defender goes on top of your moisturiser as the last product before make-up. Yes it’s an extra step in your skincare routine, but if you find a good one it won’t feel like a chore.
Keeping you protected from the moment you step out the door is so important and one of the best ways to fight the signs of ageing. On our list you’ll find Glossier’s famous Invisible Shield, and Dr Lancer’s Sun Shield Fluid, which Victoria Beckham recently revealed is her go-to SPF and many others.
Check out our favourite SPF moisturisers and UV shields hand-picked for sun protection and anti-ageing properties, and find your favourite…
Super hydrating and works to prevent the appearance of wrinkles and dark spots. You can never go wrong with Vichy.
Turning the traditional perception of heavy, greasy sunscreens on its head, Glossier has developed a lightweight gel with an effective SPF 35 that feels practically undetectable on the skin.
This beautiful day cream is perfect for daily protection. It's light enough, not to feel heavy, it's tinted enough that if you want to skip foundation you can and it's under 100ml so perfect for travel.
If you don't like a heavy day cream then this is the option for you. It's lightweight and sinks in really quickly. As a result it works particularly well under make-up.
This is a mega moisturiser. Because not only will it protect your skin from the damaging effects of the sun's rays, but it also has a blurring effect, boosts radiance and will leave skin feeling so silky smooth you'll constantly want to touch it. But don't. That's a big skin no-no.
Naming Victoria Beckham as one of its biggest fans, Lancer's Sheer Fluid Sun Sheild gets the celebrity seal of approval. And you can't argue with VB's photo-ready finish.
Avène is one of the best brands for sensitive skin. So if your complexion is known for it's flare-ups, the added Thermal Spring Water in this shield helps soothe sensitivity and inflammation, as well as protection against UV rays.
A great option if you have combination or sensitive skin. It's non-greasy, so won't clog up your pores. A great everyday protector against UVA and UVB.
Just because you want to use a moisturiser with UVA and UVB protection, doesn't mean you have to give up on skincare benefits. This Dermalogica's SPF moisturiser delivers long lasting hydration and gives tired skin the most beautiful luminosity.
Boy, oh, boy do we love the glow that this SPF moisturiser gives skin. The honey shade leaves you with just enough colour to look healthy, but not too much that it looks fake. The formula is slightly tacky when you first apply it, which works well if you're following with make-up straight away, but if not leave it for a couple of minutes for it to fully sink in.
Keep this on your desk, in your handbag or about your person at all times. It's the best way of reapplying your SPF throughout the day. This mist rehydrates skin at the same time and also sets make-up. Ideal.