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Reader Recommended SPF

Author: Lauren Coleman

I’m the one who gets back from a sunny holiday and everyone assumes the weather was terrible. It’s not that I don’t tan it’s just I have to work really hard at it and after three cases of skin cancer in my family I can no longer justify going out to fry in the sun.

If you read my 20 things about me on Instagram recently you’ll also know I’m allergic to fake tan so other than a quick dousing of Rimmel Instant Tan every so often, I often look as though I’ve been sunbathing under the moon.

So this brings me on to sun protection. If I’m honest I don’t have a favourite brand to use. My cupboard is mostly full of Avon and Soltan lotions. I have bottles and bottles of the stuff which reminds me I need a purge as some of them must be nearing the expiry date.

Other than using a mineral suncreen on holiday when I’m more exposed to the sun I have to admit I’ve previously relied on the SPF in my moisturiser, primer and foundation to protect by face. I rarely venture in to the sun without a hat so up until now have found I never burn.

As you may have read I’ve started using acid toner and am seeing some really positive results now. My skin is smoother and brighter and my pores are beginning to shrink. However having devoured article after article from skincare guru, Caroline Hirons I’ve taken heed of her suggestion that SPF in moisturiser will only protect until around lunchtime. It’s heavily advised when using glycolic acid to use a separate SPF as they can make you more sensitive to sunlight.

Following on from your recommendations on my recent beauty post I recently bought the La Roche-Posay Anthelios Anti-Shine SPF50. I’ve used it a couple of times and so far I’m getting on really well with it.
It’s not the easiest to apply. You have to work really quickly to smother the skin in a few pumps of the runny formulation however this means it’s quickly absorbed. As I have an oily T-zone I’ve found a few squirts of this SPF are far better than any primer I’ve ever used for keeping my skin matte and oil-free. Thankfully there’s no white residue and it’s easy to apply my base over the top.
Overall my skin feels very ‘protected’ which also brings me on to my one concern. I’m yet to use this on a mega hot (and therefore sweaty day) but I wonder how locked in my skin is going to feel if that makes sense? If the product is stopping the rays getting in, will my skin be able breathe or will it feel clogged? Other reviews suggest it’ll be just fine but I’ll report back after my holidays too.

As also advised by the skincare gurus I’m now also double cleansing – one to remove the SPF and make-up and then another round to cleanse the skin. I’m sure that’s worthy of another post though.

What are you lovely ladies using on your face this year? Do you wear a sunscreen whatever the weather? For suncare for the little Lottie’s chatting high protection over on Rock My Family today.

Lauren likes Paris, Prosecco and Paint Charts
Follow Lauren on instagram @mrslaurencoleman
This post may include affiliate links.

25 thoughts on “Reader Recommended SPF

  1. Lauren- how did I miss your ’20 things you don’t know about me’ on Insta??? I’ve just devoured it and honestly- it’s probably one of the most beautiful Instagram posts I’ve ever read. You’re amazing x thanks for the skincare post too- I had no idea about double cleansing!! Have a fabulous holiday x

  2. I have super pale sensitive skin. I have discovered La Roche Posay Anthelios Comfort range. This was after a lot of ‘research’ into what would minimise horrible prickly heat. It is amazing. Not as dry feeling as I would ideally like, but absolutely no prickly heat after using which was always a big problem of mine. After a couple of days of using it another benefit is my skin feels super soft 🙂 In the UK day to day I use Clinique City Block SPF 25 under my make up.

    1. So good to hear the comfort range is good for prickly heat LJ.
      Will take a look at the City Block reviews too. Thanks for the recommendation x

  3. I have the Jane Iredale powder SPF 30 which has a bronze/gold tint. I only use a little bit and as you know, I wear a massive hat and glasses whenever I’m in the sun. I would love to find a gentle non-sticky, non-white don’t-know-it’s-there sunscreen. or even a moisturiser that has an SPF that doesn’t break me out or give me eczema. I’ll find one that seems fine for a few days then my skin just feels clogged and doesn’t look as “fresh”. I’m yet to really venture into the acid toner landscape but I am using a 1% BHA which is so far so good – I’m definitely taking it on holiday to (hopefully) keep my complexion clear x

  4. I live in Gran Canaria and I am fair skinned.
    I use Riemann 20 spf 50 everyday, it’s so easy to apply and one application is enough (at least for me) for the whole day, it’s perfect for the whole family, even the littlest ones. We also have skin cancer in our family, so I strongly urge everyone to use proper protection while in direct sun.

    1. A friend of mine uses this and loves it but I’ve never been able to get on with a once a day application.
      What a wonderful place to live Charlotte!

      1. It is a great place to live, lots of sunshine ☀️ but a lot of times, I really miss the rain especially in the summer. Another great brand for sensitive skin is Ladival 50+. We just had family over and my auntie suffered from an allergic reaction to the sun and heat, so I went to the pharmacy and got the Ladival, the next day her skin was remarkable and the redness was gone.

  5. I have only just started wearing sunscreen everyday under my makeup and always relied on the spf in my tinted moisturiser but I’ve started using glow tonic and thought I should probably step up my protection. I had a tester of Ultrasun face spf30 for very sensitive skin and it is brilliant – I will be purchasing full size. I have recently developed really reactive skin patches of eczema and sensitivity and this cream is brilliant, very lightweight not shiny/greasy I use either with or instead of my daytime moisturiser depending on how my skin is feeling

  6. Hi Lauren, I was one of the people banging on about how good the La Roche Posay is, so glad it’s working for you! I’ve used it in very hot weather and my skin didn’t feel clogged up or anything, also it’s really long lasting and I didn’t have to reapply as often as with the Soltan facial SPF I used previously. Love it as a primer as well. I’ve just bought a new tube to bring with me when I head off to Majorca on Thursday.

    I’ve noticed they’ve just brought out a tinted version too. It wasn’t available last year, so I had the tinted Comfort one as well as the standard dry touch gel. Whilst the Comfort is nice to wear, for very hot weather it is nowhere near as mattifying as the dry touch. ☺️☀️

    1. I nearly bought the tinted one Tracy but thought I’d give this one a whirl first.
      Have a fab time in Majorca x

  7. I swear by P20 in spf 30. Provided that you spray it on and leave it to dry on your skin for the allocated 15 minutes, one application is good for an entire day and doesn’t stain your clothes.

  8. Thoughts on a sunscreen for someone who has oily skin but for who any kind of silicones break her out! So many sunscreens for oily skin have silicones (usually labelled as dimethicone or anything ending in -cone) but I just can’t wear them. The LRP one you mention above Lauren does unfortunately. Not sure about the ‘comfort’ one which I’ve seen mentioned a lot by people with sensitive skin I need to check it out. Would be interested to know as well if silicones actually help with the sun or UV protection and If i buy something without if I’ll be risking being burnt more (skin cancer in the family here too). I was previously wearing the waterproof Shiseido SPF30 for face and body for holidays which I loved but now they’ve discontinued that for a new formulation which contains…you guessed it… 🙁

    1. There is nothing more frustrating than a product you love being discontinued. Hope the comfort version works out for you.

  9. I’m SO pleased that LRP is finally becoming widely available over here – I have been using it for a few years, but have until fairly recently only been able to get it in France (I have been known to hunt out local pharmacies in little French towns to spend my “holiday money” on stockpiles of LRP to keep me going back home!). I love the Anthelios range. I have fairly oily skin and this is the only product I have found that keeps my face matte and doesn’t cause me to break out in “suncream spots”. It’s a great base for makeup too – again, this is the only product I have found that doesn’t make my makeup slide off my face by 10am…
    The Anthelios after-sun is amazing too. Actually, most of my skincare products are LRP – I am a convert to all things French, they do beauty products so well!

  10. Hi Lauren, I too am very pale, but proudly so these days. Of course it does mean that, with pale hair, the moment I get a blemish it stands out like a sore thumb but I digress.
    In my early twenties I used to love my two week sun holidays with the girls and coming back suitably bronzed. I always used a factor 30 but I recognise these days that a tan still means you have burned so tanning is really not important to me anymore. Protecting my skin is!
    No matter our skin types, we should all be so careful. I’m proud of being fair skinned and I wear colours that complement this. This year, for our sun holiday I will firmly be applying the Factor 30 regularly and staying out of the direct sun between 11am and 3pm. Of course, there’s always times we can’t avoid the direct sunlight and for me my poor scalp suffers. I try to wear a big hat but can anyone recommend a scalp spray with SPF that won’t make me look like I’ve applied too much hair gel a’la Ross Geller?

  11. I bought this stuff for when we went to America two years ago and I love it. My husband has had malignant melanoma and I don’t tan/burn within five minutes on a hot UK day and don’t want my face to resembled a chesterfield by the time I’m 40 so sunscreen is not an area where we mess about. Between us we bought two bottles each of the fluid and the moisuriser. He prefers the fluid all the time, I have rosacea and really dry/sensitive skin with it so the creamier one is better for me, no reaction whatsoever apart from knowing my skin is protected and I won’t feel burning or itching.
    I prefer the fluid if I’m wearing make up as the moisturiser is more shiny, but I never feel like I’ve got it on once it’s on, and I HATE foundation etc on my skin, makes me want to claw it off! So I’d be quite surprised if you feel that way. If it helps, the year we bought them we did San Fran to Vegas including two solid weeks of driving through desert including Death Valley in September sunshine, and also just used the last of the bottles this year (so really too old) when we went to Hawaii. Not one tiny bit of sunburn, the stuff is amazing, couldn’t recommend it more!

  12. I’ve worked for an NHS based dermatologist and we routinely recommended the LRP sunscreen. Personally I prefer the XL ultra light fluid, the mattifying one is so mattifying I find it too dry for my eczema prone skin! If you are using a vitamin C based serum/product it will also enhance your SPF effect so make it part of your morning routine rather than your evening for extra protection. I’m trying out the drunk elephant C-firma but shipping it from the US makes it very spendy. I really recommend beautypedia when you are buying new skincare, when i’m spending a fortune on skincare I at least want decent active ingredients!

  13. I only ever use City Block as can never justify trying something else in case I break out! City block is slightly tinted so it makes a great primer, and to date I’ve never burnt with it (crosses everything that continues), plus it doesn’t irritate when used close to the eye. I repeat buy every year.

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