Asked & Answered |

Is the Sunscreen in My Makeup Enough Protection?

is the sunscreen in makeup enough protection

Is sunscreen in makeup enough protection? Can you put sunscreen over makeup? How do you wear sunscreen and makeup together? So many valid questions, and we’re here to answer all of them!

When you decide to make wearing sunscreen an every single day habit, you may confront a slight hitch in your plans… How do you wear sunscreen — and reapply it every two hours — if you wear makeup? Don’t worry! It’s possible and you’ll be amazed at all the ways you can wear SPF and makeup at the same time. Let’s get started!

Is the sunscreen in my makeup enough protection?

In most cases, no. Take another look at your foundation or primer with SPF. The SPF number on your product is likely too low to count as adequate protection at all. Remember: Any product you use as your sunscreen should have at least SPF 30. If it’s any lower, then it’s not providing enough protection. Thankfully, every Supergoop! product contains an SPF of 30 or higher.

Dr. Nava Greenfield of Schweiger Dermatology Group in NYC has no qualms that primers, foundations and moisturizers infused with the right amount of SPF will protect the skin sufficiently. “Products that are labeled as SPF 30 or above have proven that they protect the skin in the same way that a pure SPF product would as long as they are used as directed,” she says. Which brings us to our next point…

How will I know I’m getting the right amount of SPF protection if I use hybrid products?

We all know that you need to apply one-fourth of a teaspoon amount of sunscreen to your face (about a quarter-sized amount) in order to get the full number of SPF protection that’s listed on the packaging. So how do you make sure you get that much when you’re using a primer or foundation with SPF? You really can’t get that much with one single SPF-infused product (unless you like to apply a lot of primer or foundation), so the key is to wear an SPF wardrobe.

An SPF wardrobe consists of separate layers of SPF that together add up to the full quarter-sized amount you’ll need for full protection.

“Layering different products, each with an SPF factor, is a great way to get full protection versus just wearing one product on its own.”

Dr. Nava Greenfield

“Sometimes it’s difficult to use so much of one product to really get the full coverage,” says Greenfield. “Layering different products, each with an SPF factor, is a great way to get full protection versus just wearing one product on its own. So if you use a moisturizer, primer and CC cream, each with an SPF 30 or higher, you will be adequately protecting your skin.” Just remember that SPF 30 over SPF 30 doesn’t equal SPF 60!

Cool, so how exactly do I layer SPF with makeup?

We’ve got all the supplies for a beautiful SPF-packed makeup look! If you’re in need of hydration, your best bet is to start with an SPF moisturizer, like our Superscreen Daily Moisturizer SPF 40. This ultra-hydrating cream provides skin with all-day moisture and preps it to absorb your primer and CC cream or foundation a little bit better.

A little goes a long way, so if you’re layering, you only need to apply a dime-sized amount or so. Or — if your skin is really dry and you’re using it as your only source of sunscreen — a quarter-sized amount will do the trick without feeling sticky or heavy.

Next, you’ll want to seek an SPF-infused primer, which would be our best-selling Unseen Sunscreen SPF 40 or 100% Mineral Matte Screen SPF 40. They create different canvases for whatever look you’d like to have.

Unseen Sunscreen is a clean chemical primer and is a total winner for every skin tone and type, especially dry and combination ones, thanks to its lightweight feel. The best thing about Unseen is that it’s invisible so it works on every single skin tone, without leaving a chalky finish or a white cast.

If you’re into 100% mineral sunscreens, if you have sensitive, acne-prone skin or oily skin, or if you just prefer a matte finish, 100% Mineral Matte Screen with SPF 40 is the way to go. This is our primer that uses mineral sunscreen actives to protect the skin from the sun, while helping absorbing excess oil for a soft focus, matte finish. The translucent tint also blends into the color of your skin to help even out any red spots. It’s especially great for those who suffer from hyperpigmentation or rosacea.

The next layer should be your foundation or CC cream with sunscreen –with at least SPF 30. Our Daily Correct CC Cream with SPF 35 works really well to cover and correct any imperfections or unevenness in the skin without weighing it down. It offers a bit more coverage than a tinted moisturizer but doesn’t feel heavy or tacky like traditional foundation. 

And don’t forget to reapply!

It’s absolutely imperative that you reapply your sunscreen every two hours because your sunscreen will break down and fade over time, and mineral sunscreen actives are likely to be naturally wiped off or removed by your hands. So if you’re wearing a full face of makeup and you’re stumped as to how to reapply your SPF, look into a setting mist with SPF or a setting powder with SPF.

Defense Refresh Setting Mist contains SPF 50 and is the perfect way to lock in all your makeup before you head out for the day. It uses clean chemical sunscreen actives and works best if you have combination to dry skin. Simply spray this mist over your finished look to set your makeup, then spray it again every two hours for an SPF refresh.

Another great way to reapply is with our 100% Mineral Setting Powder with SPF 45. This formula is 100 percent mineral, and it absorbs excess shine while leaving behind a beautiful, matte finish. To use it, just remove the pin, tap the brush against your wrist until you see powder forming on the bristles and then pat it all over your face. 

The bottom line

Combining a moisturizer, primer and CC Cream should offer more than enough SPF to guarantee full protection, and even just combining two should be enough! You just need to make sure that the products you use contain broad spectrum SPF 30 (at least), and that you’re applying the right amount, which is 1/4 of a teaspoon. You can achieve this by combining different products together.

And one final tip from Greenfield: “Make sure to cover the entire surface area of your face so that every area is protected.”

+Are you still wondering… is the sunscreen in makeup enough protection? Leave your lingering questions in the comments below and we’ll answer them!