Is it time to rethink your sunscreen routine?

Here are 5 steps you shouldn’t skip to be truly protected

We all know sunscreen is important to prevent skin cancer and premature aging.  We also know it can be a hassle to apply and reapply during our daily routines.  But it doesn’t have to be.  There are easy steps you can take to protect your skin and keep it looking its best for years to come.

The reality is that while it’s easy to add a facial moisturizer with sunscreen to your morning routine, this usually isn’t enough for all day protection.  You also don’t want to skip over some other very important body parts that need attention too.  Start with basic face and body sunscreen practices, but remember these 5 steps to really make a difference.  You’re skin is worth it!

1. Lip Sunscreen

It’s easy to forget, but your lips suffer just as much as the rest of your face when exposed to sunlight.  If you are prone to coldsores it is especially important that you use SPF daily on your lips to prevent flare-ups.  Luckily there are lots of balms, glosses and lipsticks now available with SPF.  My favorite at the moment is Supergoop, SPF 30, Acai Fusion Lip Balm.  It is  smooth and shiny  with no funny sunscreen taste and works great under or over other lip products.

2. Eye Sunscreen

While you can always apply your regular sunscreen around your eyes, sometimes chemical based formulas can be irritating in that area.  That’s where a specially formulated eye product can come in handy. I’ve been using Dermalogica Total Eye Care SPF 15 because it is a non chemical sunscreen and has optical light diffusers to help with dark circles.  I also use my regular face mineral sunscreen too in the eye area when I’m feeling less fussy.  Either way, it’s important to keep that area protected to prevent wrinkles.

3. Midday Sunscreen Touchups

If you’re only applying your sunscreen in the morning, you may not be getting enough protection.  Finding a sunscreen product to apply midday that won’t disturb your makeup was a challenge in the past, but has gotten a whole lot easier in recent years.  There are many powder compacts with SPF available now for this purpose along with some makeup setting sprays.  My product of choice though is ColoreScience Unforgettable Mineral Sunscreen Brush.  It is a loose powder based formula and comes in SPF 30 & 50.  I love that it is lightweight and goes on transparent so it doesn’t disturb my makeup.  It just leaves behind a soft matte finish.  I have it in the color Medium and it leaves no color on my skin.  Since you can’t really see the product going onto your skin, it’s a leap of faith when using it, but I took the leap and it paid off.  I used this while on a trip to Puerto Rico on days walking around Old San Juan and I came back without a tan- which was my goal.  (Please be careful though and make sure you are applying enough before spending a whole day out in the sun with this.  Since it’s not a typical cream you can see as you apply, I’d advise taking it out on test runs just to make sure you’re applying correctly before you rely on it for full sun protection.)

4. Body Moisturizers with SPF

The easiest way to make sure you’re protecting those shoulders, arms and legs everyday is by using a regular daily moisturizer formulated with SPF.  This way you don’t have to add an extra step to your routine in the morning.  After morning showers I apply L’Occitane Jenipapo Protecting Body Jelly Milk with SPF 20.  It is a light moisturizer with a beautiful floral scent.  It feels like any other body moisturizer and does not have a heavy sunscreen feel.  Aveeno also makes a nice daily moisturizing lotion with SPF 15.  I always reapply if I’ll be outside for an extended period of time and use a heavier sunscreen for outdoor activities.

5. Travel sized sunscreens for hands, chest & arms

Travel sized sunscreens are perfect for throwing in your purse and applying while out and about.  I always have one in my bag and use it as a normal hand cream (especially in the summer) to prevent premature aging.  I also make it a habit of applying it to my chest and arm area throughout the day.  There are specially formulated hand creams with SPF on the market, but there’s really no need to spend the extra cash on these.  Any sunscreen you like will work.  I currently am carrying around a  Banana Boat Sport Performance SPF 30.  It’s cheap, lightweight and gets the job done.