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Sun Shields: Moisturizer with SPF or Moisturizer + SPF? And are You Applying in the Right Order?

Moisturizer with sunscreen or moisturizer and sunscreen? Which do you use, why and how?
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I'm curious. Moisturizers that contain SPF seem an easy and popular one-step skincare route. But I'm getting a sense that some of you are choosing to use separate moisturizer and SPF. 

There's a fair amount of Twitter-talk about formulas – such as Skinceuticals Sheer Physical UV Defense SPF 50 mineral sunscreen, La Roche-Posay Anthelios SPF 60 Ultra Fluid Lotion chemical sunscreen, and Clarins UV Plus HP SPF 40 Day Screen titanium dioxide sunscreen – that don't ball up under makeup.

If you are using separate products, you know that chemical sunscreens (with Avobenzone, Octocrylene etc.) go on bare skin before moisturizer (if you need one) because they work best when the skin has time to absorb them, right? They protect by absorbing the sun's damaging rays. That's the reminder from Dr. Sandy Skotnicki, medical director of the Bay Dermatology Centre in Toronto.


Mineral (aka natural or physical) sunscreens that contain only titanium dioxide and/or zinc oxide can go on after moisturizer, Skotnicki says, because they deflect UVA/UVB rays. And if you choose a powder mineral sunscreen, such as Colorescience Sunforgettable SPF 30 (it comes in a range of tinted shades and clear), you can apply it over your makeup.

So which do you use? A moisturizer such as Dermalogica Dynamic Skin Recovery SPF 30, Aveeno Fresh Essentials Nourishing Moisturizer SPF 30, or Olay Professional Pro X Age Protection Lotion with SPF 30? Or a separate sunscreen that goes under or over your moisturizer?

And why do you use what you use? Convenience? Texture? Protection?

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