The skin heroes you deserve
Summer lovin’ is all year round in Singapore, so sunscreen application should come naturally for most of us. But if you’re jetting off over the mid-year travel season or are simply more active and outdoorsy than the average cubicle warrior, here are some SPF must-haves that will resist all manner of water and perspiration as you go about your exciting lives.
We’ve got your face, body, and even your oft-neglected lips protected with these babies, so all that’s left to do is pack yourself some great swimwear, sunnies, a hat, and you’re good to go.
#1 Kiehl’s Ultra Light Daily UV Defense SPF50 PA++++, $55 for 30ml or $82 for 60ml*
Ask women if they’ve heard of the brand Kiehl’s and most of them will know of this sunscreen. While not new by any means, this sunscreen is loved by so many women, and with good reason. This Kiehl’s best-sellers is oil-free, fragrance-free, colorant-free, and non-comedogenic, with an upgrade by way of a new botanical addition of Rosa Gallica to soothe and calm your skin.
#2 Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch Sunblock SPF50 PA+++, $22.990 for 90ml
Neutrogena sunscreens have been around for ages and are in fact one of the earlier brands we remember for going sheer with the UltraSheer Dry Touch sunblock in particular. The brand has introduced a newer version called the SheerZinc Dry Touch ($31.90), which is meant to have been tested and proven suitable for eczema skin.
Cool bit of trivia: It even won the US-based National Eczema Association Seal of Acceptance award in 2016. So if you’re on a budget and looking for a sunscreen that’s suitable for sensitive and problematic skin, this one’s going on your list for sure.
#3 Biore UV Aqua Rich Watery Essence, $18.90
Biore has reformulated its UV Aqua Rich watery line for longer lasting UV protection, which means you don’t have to reapply it as often! (PSA: it’s still a good idea to do so every two hours or so.) Waterproof and sweat-proof, it has a light watery texture that feels cool and refreshing on the skin.
And if you like a bit of radiance, it also contains a brightening effect on your skin with a light-reflecting veil. There are two products in this updated range: the Watery Essence suitable for your face; and a Watery Gel that does double duty for both face and body.
#4 Chanel UV Essentiel Gel-Creme SPF 50/PA+++, $87 for 30ml
This year, Chanel released its UV Essentiel Multi-Protection Daily Defender in a new gel cream texture. The brand has quite simply taken it to the next level in terms of the product being ultra lightweight and ultra comfortable, not to mention a higher amount of sun protection.
Another cool bit: This sunscreen isn’t just going to protect you from UV damage, but also promises to serve as a buffer against the ageing effects of indoor lighting and city pollution. It’s slightly moisturising and leaves your skin feeling soft and smooth, which makes it perfect for anyone who doesn’t want a cloying cream on their face.
#5 Shiseido Perfect UV Protector SPF50+ PA++++, $59 for 50ml
This is one of the most popular sunscreens in its price range (you may find that it’s out of stock from time to time). Not only is it very water resistant, it has a protective veil that’s actually designed to become even more effective when it comes into contact with water or perspiration (“the wetter, the better”). The sunscreen also includes skincare ingredients that promise to prevent dryness and damage to cells and DNA.
#6 Biore Anti-Pollution Body Care Serum SPF50+ PA+++, $12.90 for 150ml
Not only do these body care serums boast high levels of UVA and UVB protection, they also fend off free radicals from pollutants. And as the name suggests, it isn’t a heavy lotion that’s going to sit on your skin. Instead it has a fast-absorbing ultra-light serum texture which spreads easily and feels comfortable on your skin even under the hot sun.
You can try the Intensive White version which has Vitamin B3 and Yuzu Orange, or the Extra Moist one for drier skin that has Vitamin E and Collagen.
#7 Sunplay Watery Cool Body Mist SPF75 PA+++, $21.90 for 150ml
While we aren’t certain that anything over SPF50 is going to do more for your skin, we do love a good body mist when it comes to sunblock reapplication. You always want to make sure you apply your base layer of protection meticulously, but throwing a spray in your bag is handy for touch-ups throughout the day. Just don’t be afraid to be more liberal with the spray. This one has a really nice cooling sensation which your skin will love on a hot day, and is also water-resistant.
#8 Nivea Sun Protect & Refresh Invisible Cooling Sun Spray SPF50, $20 for 200ml
If you love a spray but want a little more bang for your buck, Nivea has a SPF spray as well. While Sunplay’s is more of a lightweight aerosol, you’ll need a tad more effort to apply this; you’re meant to spritz and pat it in with your hands. That said, this one will go a longer way and is supposed to be completely invisible on the skin so you don’t have to worry about looking like a chalky mess.
#9 Fresh Sugar Sport Treatment Sunscreen SPF 30, $36
We rarely think about our lips when we consider sun protection, despite the fact that there are a fair few lip balms out there with SPF. In fact, Fresh was one of the first brands to popularise the very idea of an SPF tinted lip balm.
This water-resistant “sport” sunscreen for your lips is the perfect companion to your face and body moisturisers if you’re planning on spending a day in the sun and in the water. While the brand claims it can be used on the face, lips and eye area, we love the creamy texture best for your lips. SPF 30 is a very decent level of protection for your smackers and will hopefully keep them from chapping and drying out as they are wont to do at the beach or in a pool.
#10 Senka Perfect UV Gel, $16.90 for 80ml, and UV Milk, $16.90 for 40ml
Two more wallet-friendly options are the new Perfect UV Gel and Milk from Senka. Both are non-sticky on the skin and dry down to a satiny matte texture. The UV Milk is more water-resistant than the Gel, making it the better option if you plan on working up a sweat or going for a swim. Both of these sit really nicely under makeup as well, feel really lightweight and are undetectable on the skin.
Text: Alyssa Dhaliwal, Her World Plus / Additional Reporting: Arissa Ha