During the summer months, I always switch from using a moisturiser with SPF to using a "proper" sunscreen to make sure I minimise the number of new freckles that crop up on the tops of my cheeks.
This summer I've been using NIA 24 Sun Damage Prevention UVA/UVB Sunscreen SPF 30 PA+++. It caught my eye because it's a chemical sunscreen rather than physical sunscreen (physical sunscreens which contain Titanium Dioxide and Zinc Oxide are reflective and thus make me look like a shiny greaseball) and it's also PA+++ which is the highest rating of UVA protection (equates to 4-5 UVA protection stars in the UK).
The product description was appealing too:
Patented Pro-Niacin® rebuilds the skin barrier, your skin’s natural protective and moisture barrier and is clinically proven to visibly improve skin tone, texture, fine lines, wrinkles, sun spots and hyperpigmentation. Chemical sunscreens protect against UVA & UVB rays, together providing the ultimate in sun protection and repair in a lightweight, hydrating formula.
This sunscreen isn't designed to be a moisturiser on its own, but it does have some moisturising properties. I use it straight over my serum in place of a moisturiser and my (usually dry) skin hasn't complained so far.
I really like the way this sunscreen is non-greasy, silky and lightweight to apply and just feels like wearing moisturiser. Most sunscreens with this level of UVA protection are really thick and heavy on the skin and make my skin feel like it can't breathe. There aren't any weird, reflective patches on my skin when wearing this either so it's great for everyday use.
I'm not sure if this product will noticeably improve existing freckles or improve skin tone and texture, but I'm just content knowing that I'm wearing a good sunscreen (with bonus skin benefits) when the New York sun is beating down on me.
This sunscreen costs £37/$45 for 75ml which sounds quite pricey for a sunscreen, but that's how much I would spend on a moisturiser anyway (which generally lasts me around six months), so I would definitely shell out for another tube next summer when this PR sample runs out.
You can see more product details on the NIA 24 website or on the Space NK website.
Note that this is a different product to the NIA 24 100% Mineral Sunscreen which is a physical sunscreen and works by reflecting UV rays rather than absorbing them.
The full ingredients of NIA Sun Damage Prevention UVA/UVB Sunscreen SPF 30 are:
Active Ingredients: Homosalate 7.50%, Octisalate 5.00%, Avobenzone 3.00%, Octocrylene 2.60%.
Inactive Ingredients: Water (Aqua/Eau), Dipropylene Glycol, Myristyl Nicotinate, Polyester-8, Caprylyl Methicone, Cyclopentasiloxane, Panthenol, Glyceryl Stearate, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Seed Extract, Ceramide 2, Ceramide 3, Lycium Chinense Fruit Extract, Vaccinum Angustifolium (Blueberry) Fruit Extract, Arctostaphylos Uva Ursi Leaf Extract, Mangifera Indica (Mango) Seed Butter, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Sorbitan Sesquioleate, Cetyl Alcohol, Methyl Glucose Sesquistearate, PEG-100 Stearate, Potassium Cetyl Phosphate, Hydrogenated Palm Glycerides, Butylene Glycol, Caprylyl Glycol, Sodium Acrylate/Sodium Acryloyidimethyl Taurate Copolymer, Isohexadecane, Polysorbate 80, Polyacrylate-15, Polyacrylate -17, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Disodium EDTA, Phenoxyethanol, Chlorphenesin, Xanthan Gum, Potassium Hydroxide.
Disclosure: PR sample