I'm Finally Wearing Sunscreen in the Winter — and Indoors

Year-round SPF is a must, and these are the products I’ve been experimenting with to better shield against UV damage.
Publish date:
December 31, 2015
winter, spf, sunscreen, VMV Hypoallergenics, eve lom, Lavanila, Cosmedix

Some elements of beauty fall strictly into my vanity category — which I file under self-care and never underestimate — but actually minding self and skin is more important than ever to me. Undoing years of unprotected tanning with antioxidants and exfoliants is now just a regular part of my routine, but there is always room for improvement, especially when it comes to sun protection.

A super real 40% of cancers can be prevented by switching up your lifestyle, and as I leave behind my reckless years, I’m always trying to take better care of myself and my body.

I used to think that sunscreen was superfluous indoors, until I had a couch positioned directly in front of a south-facing window. I never thought it was possible to tan indoors without a tanning bed. Now that I live in a sunny abode and know that standard windows only filter 75% of UVA rays, I’m donning at least SPF 30 indoors from now on.

Sunscreen year-round on face and hands is one of the ways that I can step it up big-time, and these are the four products I’ve been experimenting with to better shield against UV damage.

Underneath makeup is a great place to stash SPF if you use enough primer to do the deed. Fortunately, on full-application makeup days I also need a serious dose of primer to keep everything in place.

I tagged in Eve Lom Flawless Radiance Primer SPF 30 because it’s like a skincare product that also helps makeup adhere. Rose extract, hyaluronic acid, and niacinamide take care of things while your foundation stays on top where it belongs.

If you’re into mineral sunscreens, Lavanila is bringing their own interpretation of sunscreen to life with this Sport Luxe Face & Body Cream SPF 30. Its base is a natural oil-based polymer that helps the shea butter and camellia oil formula adhere the suspended mineral formula to skin. It’s a little tacky, but if you powder over it, the finish is kind of fabulous.

I’m finally giving in to the light side and upgrading to SPF 50 while outside this winter. I’m feeling very stubborn about it, but it’s just time to embrace the facts. If you don’t wear sunscreen October through April, that’s 60% of the year with no protection. Considering you can slow aging by 24% if you wear sunscreen religiously, maybe it’s time for me to go there, and go all in.

I’ve been digging Cosmedix Peptide-Rich Defense SPF 50 as a daytime face lotion. It doesn’t screw up my makeup and leaves my skin feeling good at the end of the day, not stressed like it sometimes does. It's not too rich for daytime but doesn't skimp on the softness.

I lapsed in my Spironolactone Rx recently due to my busy move, and my skin is reacting with a vengeance. It’s made trying new products quite difficult, to be honest, since cystic, painful bumps were coming three at a time, I was really afraid of trying anything new during this time. I reviewed the list of "no’s" on VMV Hypoallergenics’ allergen list and realized that this was probably an A-OK line to mess with even in my skin’s worst hour.

VMV is known for their mild, non-irritating, noncomedogenic formulas, and Armada Sport 50+ is tough enough for body but balanced for use on face — and totally safe to use over really aggravated skin.

It’s high time that I address my inappropriate relationship with the sun and get on the SPF choo-choo. If it teams up with my super-sebaceous tendencies, I might get to look like my mom — 40ish in her 50s! Even on cloudy days, 80% of UVA rays get through, so don't be stubborn like I have been.

  • What SPF do you wear in the winter?
  • How about indoors?
  • What steps are you taking to improve your self-care in 2016?

Photos: Maria Penaloza