Make-up masterclass: Five tips for protecting your skin in the sun
Paddy McGurgan is one of NI's best-known beauty experts and each week he tells us all we need to know about the latest make-up techniques and trends
We've had amazing weather this week as temperatures soar all over Northern Ireland, so, while the sun is blazing, it's time to update your beauty and skincare routine to include some SPF products.
SPF, which stands for Sun Protection Factor, helps to protect your skin from UVB and UVA Rays - types of radiation that can cause sunburn, damaged skin and in more severe cases can lead to skin cancer. Here are some easy ways to add SPF to your beauty routine so you can enjoy the sun without worrying about lasting effects to your skin.
The first SPF rich product I always carry in my kit is the Body Shop Vitamin C Glow Protect Lotion SPF 30 (£15). Vitamin C is such an important nutrient that we all need for regeneration of cells and to add brightness and hydration back into the skin.
This moisturiser is ideal for anyone with dull or tired skin and the strong factor has great UVA and UVB protection. This is such a nourishing product that melts seamlessly into the skin because it's not thick or emollient. It's perfect as quick-application moisturiser when you want to apply make-up right away - you have to wait much longer to apply your make-up after using a thick cream as it requires more time to sink into the skin.
I know mornings can be notoriously stressful for busy mums, so my advice would be to use a tinted moisturiser in place of foundation. They offer great benefits - it's lightweight (so you won't feel it sitting on your skin) and adds coverage and hydration. Tinted moisturisers usually have a sheer to medium coverage which means it will blend evenly into the skin, whilst adding some much needed SPF. Try Tom Ford's Soleil Tinted Moisturiser Broad Spectrum SPF 30 (£59).
If you prefer more coverage than a tinted moisturiser provides, then choose a foundation with SPF. Try e.l.f. Beautifully Bare Foundation Serum (£9.00) which has a lightweight, easy-to blend formula which will minimise the appearance of pores and fine lines.
The serum provides light to medium coverage and has a high sun protection factor of 25. Enjoy healthier skin after each use with the nourishing benefits of goji berries, pomegranate oil, grape seed oil and vitamins A, C & E. It is super hydrating on the skin which will leave you with a dewy complexion. This will be a real saviour for anyone who suffers with dull skin.
There are even powders that offer protection from the sun's rays. Benefit's 'Hello Flawless' Pressed Powder (£29, Benefit at Debenhams) is a silky powder cover-up that glides on naturally sheer and layers beautifully for customised coverage with SPF protection.
Complete with brush, sponge and dual application, this is a wonderful product to use - but I advise that when applying, use little amounts on your brush or sponge as the powder is super pigmented. A little goes a long way.
Just like your skin, your lips can burn too - don't forget to protect them from the sun. Lip products with SPF not only protect them from harmful rays, but will help nourish and hydrate your lips during hotter, dry weather. Try Kiehl's Lip Balm #1 Mango (£9.50).
This lip balm has a factor 4 sunscreen and is great at relieving cracked or chapped lips. SPF lipbalms are an easy, affordable way to protect your lips from the drying effects of wind and harsh weather conditions.
If you are used to finishing off your look with a setting spray, try adding one with SPF to your summer beauty routine. Keep make-up from shifting and melting with Coola's SPF 30 Makeup Setting Spray (£39, Space NK), a spray that will help protect from the sun and make your skin look fresh throughout the day. This setting spray is a weightless product that has a matte finish. It contains aloe vera and cucumber to help soothe sensitive skin and includes hyaluronic acid to keep the skin hydrated.
Five tips for protecting your skin in the sun
1. Tailor your SPF product to your skin type and tone.
2. Do not over protect. Studies show that 15 minutes per day of direct sunlight is healthy and allows Vitamin D renewal in the skin and body.
3. Read the label. Although SPF is good, it is important to opt for as little chemicals as possible when choosing your SPF products. One chemical to avoid is titanium dioxide - this is derived from the mineral titanium to create a material that is effective at blocking the sun's rays, however, it can have harmful effects on the skin.
4. The sun is always out - even though you may not lounging by the pool in Marbella - so keep your SPF going, even when the sun doesn't seem prominent.
5. Cover all exposed skin. It is a general rule that you should fill a shot glass with the amount of SPF product you are using, especially lotions, moisturisers and foundations.