Need to know
• If you’re going to be exposed to lots of sun – whether on the beach, playing sport or out in the garden – the SPF in a moisturiser, CC cream or foundation won’t be enough to shield your skin. Part of the issue is that you’re unlikely to apply the required two pea-sized blobs for the face – or keep reapplying throughout the day. So go for a proper sunblock and use it liberally. If you’re going to be mostly indoors, however, relying on a multitasker should be fine, as long as it supplies broad spectrum UVA/UVB protection.
• Layering SPF products is a good idea as it increases the chance of getting proper coverage, but it won’t increase the total sun protection factor.
• Look out for formulas that help with other issues, such as sensitivity, brown spots or wrinkles. Many have antioxidants added to help prevent free-radical damage. These are most likely lighter than sunblocks that have been designed for the body so they absorb quickly and provide a decent base for your make-up.
• What’s the difference between a tinted moisturiser, a BB cream and a CC cream? It all depends on the brand, as they all offer different benefits and varying amounts of coverage. Some of the earlier BB creams were too thick and sat on the skin, but formulas are being refined. If you go for a sheer one, you can always build it up in areas that need a little more. The products that offer most value also hydrate, prime, brighten and protect the complexion, as well as flattering in the short term.
7 To Try:
1) Hides redness
L’OrÉal Paris Nude Magique Anti-Redness CC Cream SPF 20 $29.99.This is a star, so don’t be put off by its pale green tinge. It contains corrective pigments that adapt to the skin, instantly neutralising redness. Wear it alone as a light foundation or, if you want more coverage, use as a primer. Note that this product is still in the process of being certified broad-spectrum.
2) Sensitive skins
Ultra ceuticals CC Cream SPF30 Broad Spectrum $69. There are no parabens or irritating chemicals in this light foundation, which blends hydrating, brightening, anti-ageing and anti-inflammatory ingredients. Cucumber extract calms and cools.
Neutrogena Healthy Defense Daily Moisturiser SPF 30 Broad Spectrum $19.99. If you have dry, mature skin then layer it over the top of your usual day cream. Otherwise, this is ideal protection and hydration in one. Neutrogena do great sunblocks and this product contains the same technology.
Thalgo Age Defence Sun Cream SPF 30 Broad Spectrum $86. A blend of potent antioxidants and micro-algae that targets wrinkles and cell dryness, as well as providing protection. This one is non-tinted, but its light, non-sticky texture means it’s ideal to wear beneath foundation.
Elizabeth Arden Visible Difference Multi-Targeted BB Cream SPF 30 Broad Spectrum $50. Coverage is efficient and it’s packed with skin-perfecting ingredients such as liquorice extract, age-fighting peptides, vitamin C and mineral pigments.
6) High protection
ModelCo Daily Face SPF 50 Broad Spectrum $39.95.A sheer, tinted formula you can wear alone as a sunblock or as a protective base for your foundation. You could also re-apply this one over the top of your make-up if you’re heading outdoors. The SPF 50 lip balm in the lid is a nice touch.
7) On a budget
Almay Smartshade CC Cream SPF 35 Broad Spectrum $24.95.It’s oil and fragrance-free, the texture melts into the skin and it’s designed to improve clarity and tone. Layer it over moisturiser, unless you have very oily skin.
About Nicky Pellegrino
Nicky Pellegrino has been a journalist for over 20 years, both here and in the UK, and is a former editor of New Zealand Woman's Weekly. These days, as well as working on the magazine's beauty pages, she writes popular novels like Recipe For LIfe, The Italian Wedding and The Villa Girls. For more about Nicky check out her website www.nickypellegrino.commore of this author