Sun Care | How to Reapply Sunscreen Over Makeup

20:51 Jayyangg 2 Comments

As I've previously ranted in my Shiseido post (click here) sunscreen is crucial to keep your skin healthy looking now and in the future. The sun's UVA rays penetrate deep within your skin, causing long term damage. This usually leads to tanning, wrinkles, sunspots and skin cancer. Part of what I call my "skin care regimen" that I abide by every day always includes a sunscreen in the morning. I apply my Biore UV Perfect Bright Milk (Pink bottle) that helps me from looking too shiny and brightens my skin before applying any base.
However, once I have all my makeup on, how do I reapply makeup throughout the day?
As mentioned in my previous sunscreen review, sunscreen should be reapplied every 2 hours or so. This makes it difficult if you're out for a few hours as it's quite impossible to remove all your makeup and redo your base. When you have makeup on, your options of reapplying sunscreen are really quite limited (unless you want to mess up your makeup!). So, when picking the correct sunscreen there are a few terms you should be looking out for: Broad Spectrum, UVA/UVB, PA(++++), PPD (What are they? Read about them here)
Here are my 3 recommendations:

1. Mist/Spray

Perhaps my favourite way of re-applying my SPF! Finding an aerosol can sunscreen may give you the evenest distribution without getting large droplets. They usually form a very gentle veil that does not disrupt your makeup underneath and sinks in momentarily! The cans are usually very portable and fit into your bags for reapplications. Although it may be easy to find these products anywhere in Asia (a Japanese favourite is the Kose Whitening Sunblock UV Protection Spray), I found it extremely hard to purchase these in North America. As mentioned in my previous sunscreen post, NA does not have a standardised scale for measuring UVA rays like Asia and Europe does (PA and PPD respectively) which makes it even more difficult!
Bioderma Hydrabio Eau de Soil Moisturising anti-UV mist SPF 30 PA+++ 50ml
Price: $10 Euros (Roughly $15 CAD)
Although this product is not available in NA (my mom in France shipped it to me hehe) I found it was great that it had the PA+++ scale labelled on it. This mist is gentle and easy to use and felt hydrating. The first time I used it I over applied and looked way too dewy! However, a lighter hand left my skin looking healthy and glowy without disrupting my makeup. Rating:3.5/5
Coola Makeup Setting Spray Green Tea & Aloe Broad Spectrum SPF 30 Organic Suncare + Hyluronic Acid 50ml
Price: $51 CAD
Rating: 4/5
Read more about it here!
La Roche-Posay Anthelio 50+/60 Advanced UVA/UVB Protection 148ml
Price: $35 CAD
La Roche-Posay uses 2% Mexoryl as one of its main active ingredients which is known for its UVA protection. Although there is no scale in NA to measure UVA, the chances that the UVA protection is high can be associated with the use of Mexoryl. This special ingredient used to be patented by L'Oreal but now is used in many sunscreens in North America. Although this product is praised for its great sun protection, I found it to be only just bearable to use over makeup. Although when applied to the skin it leaves a light film that's quickly absorbed, on the face, it doesn't quite sink in and requires some time. However, given the limited choices, I would say this is a good option! Rating: 2.5/5
VICHY Ideal Soleil SPF 50 UVA/UVB 155g
Price: $23 CAD
Having tried the La Roche Posay and the Vichy at the same time, I would say that this is a good dupe! It has a similar feeling as it dries quickly on the body but creates almost a film like a barrier on makeup. Although this is not ideal, it's bearable. Additionally, they have very similar ingredients as this one also has 2% Mexoryl, making it a good UVA protector. Rating 2.5/5
Supergoop Defense Refresh Setting Mist SPF 50 Broad Spectrum 100ml
Price: $28 CAD
Despite not having personally used this product, Supergoop's claim that their refreshing setting mist has SPF 50, broad spectrum and protects from photoaging UV rays. Using this product as an example, these claims are exactly what you should be looking for when picking a spray out. In Canada, Urban Outfitters sells it online and is widely available in the US through Sephora.

2. Setting Powder 

If sunscreen sprays are not readily available, perhaps picking a setting powder with SPF would be an easier alternative. These powders would be great to apply on top of your makeup to refresh your look and get rid of the shine that's breaking down your makeup! In Asia, most powder foundations have a PA included which makes touch up extremely easy (a popular favourite: Canmake Marshmallow Finish Powder SPF 26 PA++)

A few options for North America after doing some research are:
Peter Thomas Roth Oily problem skin instant mineral SPF 30 UVA/UVB Protection
SuperGoop 100% Mineral Invincible Setting Powder SPF 45
(Has Zinc Oxide 20% that delivers broad spectrum sun protection)

Sunforgettable Loose Mineral Finishing Powder SPF 50 Broad spectrum UVA/UVB Sun Protection
(Includes Zinc Oxide)

3. BB Cream/Cushion

Lastly, if you don't mind re-applying your base makeup, then carrying your bb cream/cushion would be another option! Cushion Foundations are especially easy method of reapplying your SPF. BB Creams/Cushions from Asia usually already have a SPF, and a PA protection in it. Personally, I use the Hera Long Stay Cushion and Laneige Pore Control which both have SPF 50 PA+++.
Many Korean brands can now be found at Nordstrom/Sephora/Malls in NA (ex: La Neige, Amore Pacific, Sulwhasoo, The Face Shop) which makes these products easily accessible! If I don't have too much makeup on, first I blot my face and then reapply my base with the cushion. Be cautious that if you set your makeup with powder, it can make your reapplication patchy! Please remember that BB cream by itself is usually not enough, and you should still apply a sunscreen as part of your skincare morning regime.

 I struggled so much with finding ways to reapply sunscreen with makeup on. After doing a tone of research to find all the different options I hope you were able to learn something as well! Remember that sunscreen is especially crucial in the summer times or if you're using any acid peels, retinol/retinoid, vitamin c products.
In conclusion, when picking sunscreen look for terms like Broad Spectrum, UVA/UVB, PA, PPD, Zinc Oxide and Mexoryl.
Please let me know if you have any questions in the comment section :)

Until my next post!


  1. I have tried probably 100s of sunscreens over the years, and there are only a few I could say that I truly like. My favorite is Zinc It Over SPF 25 by It has no bad chemicals, it's sheer and you can wear it over makeup. It also has tons of good ingredients like blueberries, pomegranate, pumpkin seed, vitamin e, and aloe vera.

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