The New Types Of Sunscreen You Didn’t Know You Needed


Festival beauty, for me, is about prevention. At a Psych Fest many moons ago I tried to get into the spirit of things and drew black dots in the inner corners of my eyes before sprinkling glitter into my corneas (it's a little-known fact that the girl with kaleidoscope eyes just had a nasty case of cosmetics-induced pink eye). The glitter forced sunglasses at the indoor event, which in turn smeared my ill-conceived dot-age. An older, wiser me now goes for some long-wear liner, cherry ChapStick, and a high dosage of SPF now that every festival has migrated outdoors—prevention from turning into grimey, dust-encrusted Coachella leftovers, but more importantly from looking like a burnt-out groupie who spent one too many springtimes cooking on the back bumper of a rusty tour van under the Texas sun. You want to aim for the fresh, supple, girlfriend-with-an-all-access-wristband-to-the-VIP-tent look, no matter if you'll never date a dude in a band again because they're incapable of forming emotions beyond a literal interpretation of the lyrics from a Zombies album.

Where was I? Right, sunscreen. I brought the standby body cream version and wore lightweight (fringed, embroidered) jackets and long (sheer, slitted) skirts or (tight, high-waisted) jeans, but my face is a special, delicate flower deserving of boutique, specialized sunscreens:

Avène Haute Protection Tinted Compact, SPF 50: I layer so many moisturizing creams, serums, and oils on my face in the morning that an extra helping of sun cream really pushes the grease quotient—and I've tried many with promises of sheerness and matteness that have still left me quite reflective. But not the Haute Protection. The solid cream turns to truly light, matte finish on the skin, and wears quite well—not at all like a similarly-packaged foundation. In fact, this is a great option for those looking for something to even-out the skin but don't need a ton of coverage. It is tinted, but I didn't see a noticeable change in skin tone despite the fact that the Beige compact seemed far too dark for my fair skin. And it's a physical sunscreen rather than chemical, paraben-free, fragrance-free, water-resistant, and recommended for sensitive skin.

SkinCeuticals Physical Eye UV Defense, SPF 50: Ever had that potent mix of sunscreen sweat trickle down into your eyes? Or questioned whether or not it was even cool to be using sunscreen on your eyelids? No more. SkinCeuticals has created an eyelid primer packed with SPF. It's a beige, "non-migrating" cream that you just dab on with your fingertips. Just be sure not to use too much or you'll see some creasing.

Peter Thomas Roth Instant Mineral, SPF 45: The powder sunscreen isn't technically new, but I've been using it on my scalp which I think is pretty ingenious if I do say so myself. Sure, hats exist, but I look terrible in all hats except for this bubblegum pink vintage YSL cloche with attached veil, and you really can't just wear that everywhere, you know? I just dust a teeny amount of the beige-colored powder into the parts of roots wherever I might lop my hair, being careful not to go overboard as it appears little orange-y if you use too much. It even works to absorb oil and add a bit of texture, like a dry shampoo. The other great thing about the powder sunscreen is that it's instant—no need to wait 15 minutes before venturing out into the floral-headdressed and wine-filled-CamelBak-ed masses.

—Annie Kreighbaum

Photographed by Tom Newton.

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  • Chantel

    Awesome article!

  • Thu

    Killer photos!!!!


    • ITG Annie

      thank you!

  • Mademoiselle nature

    Always important to wear a sunscreen during sunny days:-)

  • Sara Shabtai

    I love the photos!!!

  • C.Michol

    Could you guys do a post on sunscreens that don't stay white on darker skin? Thank you!

    • ITG Annie

      Triple Protecton Factor SPF 50+ by Elizabeth Arden Rx -- only available in physicians offices, but it's a face sunscreen that's tinted quite dark and absorbs quickly. no white streakiness

  • Sarah

    This is really interesting. Perfect for the beach!


  • Heather Taillac

    Any idea how the eyelid sunscreen holds up for contact wearers? Other eyeshadow primers that I've used end up migrating into my eyes and causing little blurry spots on my contacts. I would LOVE to try a primer like this one with super SPF that is specifically designed to stay out of your eyes.

    • ITG Annie

      All I have to say is that "non-migrating" is pretty much in the name (you know how cosmetics and beauty products have, like, five different names smushed together into one on the label?). So you'd probably like this stuff!

  • Rina

    Dying to see that hat! :o

  • Nail Girl

    It's actually physically impossible to apply the right amount of powdered sunscreen to get the full SPF protection on your skin. This image explains why. It's definitely a better idea to find a liquid sunscreen that works for your skin and apply that properly - 1/4 tsp for face and an additional 1/4 tsp for the neck is recommended for full protection. EDIT: I completely missed that the powder is for the scalp, not the for the face! I think my point still stands though, for facial powder sunscreens and sunscreens in general.

  • Belle

    'Zine quality art direction

  • Erica Rae Deutsch

    any word on sunscreen for hair? I heard that it helps dark hair color fade less but I can't find it at ulta/cvs/sephora

  • Allana’s Lookbook

    I can vouch for the Peter Thomas Roth Mineral powder SPF - I always have this in my handbag and it is perfect for South Florida where it gets so humid. it never bulks up on my skin or looks caked or powdery, and it matches my skin tone really well. Super easy to apply and reapply. Try it!

  • desrosmic

    Laroche Posay Melt-In Cream SPF is THE BEST sunscreen. I use it for my face under BB cream and it's amazing - no white colour and no face burns for going on 2 years.

  • Sharareh

    Oh I have the Avene one! First I didn't use it because it seems too dark but it is not anymore once put on the face and it is super friendly to my acne prone skin.

  • tracygray

    Try colorscience the best

  • Clever Girl Reviews

    That is a great idea about the powder on the scalp!

  • jyohal

    My entire summer seems to be lined up with outdoor daytime parties or events - what do you do to ensure that you don't skimp on face sun protection while still looking chic and presentable? Unless it is a scorcher out, I probably would keep to my normal routine of SPF foundation, powder, bronzer, blush, seems like if I reapply my SPF foundation I would have to redo everything else!


Avene Tinted
Avene Tinted Compact SPF 50
SkinCeuticals Physical Eye UV Defense SPF 50
Peter Thomas Roth
PETER THOMAS ROTH – Instant Mineral SPF 45