Summer is just around the corner, and millions of individuals are gearing up to enjoy lazy days on the beach, leisurely strolls in the park, and garden parties with their friends. Of course, you want to look your best in the glorious sunshine, and an on-trend summer makeup look is sure to make you look and feel great. However, as it’s possible for skin burning to occur after just 10 minutes in the sun, it’s important not to forget to apply sunscreen under your makeup. But how do you successfully combine the two?

Why your face needs sunscreen

The sun’s UVA and UVB rays can impair the skin on your body and face quickly when they’ve got no protection. Both of these types of rays are capable of causing skin cancer. In addition, UVA rays contribute to sun spots, wrinkles, and lines on the face. As your face is the one part of your body which is almost always exposed, you should incorporate sunblock into your daily makeup regimen.

Do I need a special facial sunscreen?

The good news is that standard sunscreens for the body can be used on your face before you put on your makeup, but it’s important to note that the AAD advises that all individuals, regardless of their skin color and skin type use a sunscreen with a minimum protection of SPF 30. However, some brands of sunblocks are greasier and leave more of a residue than others, which can impact on the way your makeup sits on top of it. If you’re concerned about this, trial several different brands before settling on your favorite. Alternatively, invest in a specialist facial sunscreen, such as the Sunscreen Milk produced by La Roche-Posay or Supergoop’s Unseen Sunscreen.

Is the SPF in my foundation enough?

There are a range of foundations which come with SPF built into them. For example, Paula’s Choice All Bases Covered Foundation offers an SPF of 25, MAC Studio Waterweight Foundation has an SPF of 30, and Shisheido’s UV Protective Liquid Foundation comes with an impressive SPF of 42. However, experts state that the SPF in your foundation simply isn’t enough to give your skin all the sun protection that it requires.

Foundation easily comes off during day to day activities, which is why you regularly need to re-apply it or use a powder to boost your coverage during the day. Meanwhile, foundation is typically applied fairly thinly to the skin. This isn’t enough to shield your skin from the harmful rays of the sun, and so sunblock should always be used as a base for your foundation.

Applying sunscreen under makeup

The key to applying sunscreen to your face is to apply it generously. You don’t want to leave any part of your face unprotected as this puts you at risk of burning, premature aging, and even cancer. Dermatologist, Dr. Elizabeth Bahar Houshmand, MD advises that you should apply a tablespoon of sunscreen all over your face. The lotion should be dotted all over and then rubbed in. You may even have to get up a little earlier in the mornings, as Dr. Houshmand says your skin needs 15 minutes to absorb the sunscreen before makeup can be applied on top of it.

Re-applying sunscreen while wearing makeup

Sadly, it’s simply not enough to apply sunscreen under your makeup first thing in the morning and expect it to safeguard you from the sun all day. Sunscreen should be reapplied to the body at regular intervals during the day, and this rule also applies to your face. But there’s no need to worry, as you haven’t got to remove all your makeup and start again.

Simply using makeup products with a minimum SPF 30 in them will give the additional protection you need on top of your sunscreen and SPF foundation that you’ve already applied. Loose or pressed powders containing sunscreen are ideal, as they can easily be applied to your face when you’re on the go. Alternatively, sunscreen mists will provide some protection to your face, although it can be difficult to cover every inch of your face with them.

It’s advisable to wear sunscreen on your face all year round. However, with the sun at its strongest and hottest during the summer months, it’s even more crucial that you apply it at this time of year. And, regardless of how much makeup you wear, using sunscreen underneath it is a must.