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How to wear SPF over (and under) makeup without hating life

Woman sunbathing

Sunscreen, we now know, is integral to protecting ourselves from melanoma. It’s also integral if you want to maintain great skin, which isn’t the primary reason you should be using it daily (Hello! Avoid skin cancer!) but is totally a benefit on the side.

But if you wear makeup, you’ve probably struggled to find a sunscreen that works with your routine. Even if you don’t, sunscreen has a history of leaving a white cast on your face, making you look greasy, and irritating sensitive skin. It’s often easier to just not apply it – even though we know we should.

I asked Ava Matthews, founder of Ultra Violette (one of the coolest new sunscreen brands in Australia, and recently landed in Sephora stores) for her hot tips on incorporating sunscreen into your daily routine without losing your goddamn mind in the process.

1. Old formulas will be greasy on skin

According to Ava, the reason sunscreen has such a bad rap in terms of leaving skin greasy is because the old formulas required a high percentage of oil to keep the sunscreen filters stable. Now, there are water soluble SPF filters, which means lighter formulas. She says: “Look for formulations that include Tinosorbs (types of UV filters) as they generally would have been formulated in the past 5 or so years. Some SPFs on the market were created in the late 90’s!”

2. Use a hydrating SPF under makeup

If sunscreen has notoriously made your makeup run off your face in record time, look at switching to a hydrating SPF formula.

“Hydrating benefits (vitamin E, glycerin, hyaluronic acid)  in an SPF should keep skin and makeup looking fresh without it running off your face. Maybe consider replacing your daily moisturiser with a hydrating SPF. Ultra Violette’s Supreme Screen SPF50+ doubles as a great moisturiser and primer under makeup.”

3. Can you apply sunscreen OVER makeup?

Yes – but it takes some creativity. “We’re working on something that is going to make reapplying your SPF a lot easier. Until that’s available, then there are some SPF powders and sprays that can be reapplied over makeup (just make sure it’s made in Australia).” Ava Matthews

One hack Ava told us comes via influencer Hannah English (@ms_hannah_e) who worked out how to use the serum-texture Ultra Violette Queen Screen SPF 50+ over makeup by applying with a sponge.

(HINT: we have an instagram highlight for this!).

Here’s how to do it: use a dry sponge (Hannah recommends Juno but we’ve also tried this with a Beauty Blender).

Dropping one pipette at a time onto the sponge and start dabbing all over your face to cover, pressing it lightly into the skin so as not to disturb your foundation.

Continue to tap into skin lightly so product is absorbed but makeup is not moved around. You might need to reapply blush afterwards.

At the end of the day using sunscreen is a no-brainer. There’s no argument not to. It’s just about finding the right one for you.

Image by Daniel Sampaio from Pixabay

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