how to reapply sunscreen while wearing makeup

I know what you’re here for. You want me to tell you which sunscreen you can apply over a full face of makeup without messing anything up.

Tough luck: that sunscreen doesn’t exist. Yet.

Touching up your sunscreen means compromising on something: you either reapply your morning sunscreen and redo your makeup or you leave your makeup intact and use a product with SPF that gives you a little less protection.

What you can’t do is NOT reapply any SPF at all. Even though you can’t see it, UV rays can wreak some serious damage on your skin and leave wrinkles and dark spots in their trail… before you’ve hit the big 3-0.

Applying sunscreen in the morning is NOT enough. You have to reapply it throughout the day. It’s all about finding the best compromise that works for your lifestyle.

So I’m gonna tell you how I’m doing it. Here are my tips to reapply sunscreen without messing up your makeup:

Start With A Strong Sunscreen Base

It’s true that sunscreen doesn’t last all day. The more sunlight UV filters are exposed to, the sooner they degrade and stop working. They get used up on the job, you know what I mean?

But if you apply the recommended amount of sunscreen (1/4 of a teaspoon for the face only) first thing in the morning, your sunscreen will last you longer than if you just slathered on a thin layer.

Then, give it time to settle. Wait at least 15 minutes before putting on your foundation. When you do, stipple it on with a stippling brush or pat it on with a beauty blender.

Don’t rub the foundation on with your fingers or a brush or you’ll brush off some of the sunscreen, too. Yes, it takes more time but it’s worth the hassle.

P.S. The more products you apply on your face after sunscreen, the higher the chance you’ll rub some of it off. I’m not saying to keep your makeup minimal. If you like a full face, go all out. Just be mindful of how you’re doing it.

Related: How To Apply Foundation Without Messing Up Your Sunscreen

Now you have a strong base on, how do you reapply sunscreen without messing up your makeup? For me, it all depends on the weather and what I’m doing that day. Here’s what I mean:

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How To Reapply Sunscreen On Indoor Days

You know what days I’m talking about. It’s the middle of winter. The sun bothers to shine for only a few short hours – and it’s hidden behind clouds most of the time.

The temperatures are freezing cold. You shiver every time you set foot outside the house. If you didn’t have to go to the office, you wouldn’t venture out at all (if you’re like me and work from home, you may not go out for days…).

These are the kind of days when you think you don’t need sunscreen. Think again. UVA rays can penetrate through clouds and windows. You’re not safe just because you’re indoors and can’t see the sun.

But on these days, you can get away with reapplying sunscreen a little less often. As your sunscreen isn’t exposed to that much sunlight, it will degrade – and lose its effectiveness – more slowly.

On days like these, I usually retouch my sunscreen with a powder with SPF at least once or twice. Powders with SPF don’t give you as much protection as sunscreen, but every little bit helps, right?

Plus, they won’t mess up your makeup. Just make sure you apply them as generously as you can without getting the cakey look.

Related: Do Cosmetics With SPF Provide Adequate Sun Protection?

How To Reapply Sunscreen On warm And Sunny Days

Spring is finally here. The sun is shining, the temperatures are warming up and you feel like going for a walk in the park. Or maybe you’re sitting near your office window all day and getting more than your fair share of UV light without stepping foot outside for long.

On days like this, I tone down my makeup. I don’t give up on it because hey, I like makeup. But instead than going for a full face, I do a simple makeup look.

I start by applying a thin layer of foundation, dab concealer and apply a cream blush. A little eyeshadow and mascara for the eyes. I finish off the look with lipstick.

You can apply a bit more but I like to keep it simple, so if something goes wrong with sunscreen reapplication, I don’t have too much touching up to do.

How do I reapply sunscreen on warm and sunny days? I use a spray sunscreen or a mist with SPF.

I know, I know… I’ve always said I don’t like spray sunscreens and that’s still true. You can’t really see spray sunscreens or mists so it’s harder to tell if you’ve applied enough or if you’ve covered every spot.

On the other hand, it’s their clear texture that makes them perfect for sunscreen reapplication. You can spray them on a full face of makeup and gently pat it in without smearing foundation or mascara off your face.

Let’s be clear: I would NEVER use spray sunscreen or a mist with SPF as my base sunscreen in the morning. But it’s a good compromise on days when you want to reapply sunscreen without messing up your makeup.

Related: The Truth About Spray Sunscreens: Do They Provide Adequate Sun Protection?

How To Reapply Sunscreen On Burning Hot Summer Days

Summer’s in full swing. The days are so hot, you’re sweating buckets even when you sit still. You’re spending all your free time outside. Picnics in the parks. Holidays at the beach. Day trips to nearby sea towns.

On days like these, there’s no compromise: you need to reapply sunscreen.

I wear minimal makeup to make reapplication easier. Plus, what’s the point of applying foundation if it’s just going to melt off your face?

Instead than foundation, I just dab a little concealer on problem areas, like under my eyes, and a cream blush on my cheeks. Cream eyeshadow, a touch of mascara and a slick of tinted lip balm finish off the look.

After 2 hours of outdoor fun, I just reapply my morning sunscreen in circular motions all over my face. Chemical sunscreens are better for this. They have lightweight textures that you can reapply on top of makeup without messing it up too much.

I reapply mineral sunscreens only when I’m not wearing any makeup at all. What can I say? Sometimes, I feel like going out bare faced. It just depends on how hot it is.

Related: Chemical VS Physical Sunscreen: Which One Is Right For You?

How do you reapply your sunscreen when you’re wearing makeup? Share your thoughts in the comments below.