Here are the 20 best French sunscreens for every skin type and every occasion. One of the staples of the French skincare routine in summer is a good sunscreen with the highest SPF you can find. The French are obsessed with sunscreen since they know that the sun is making their skin aging prematurely. French women always protect their skin with enough sunscreen and make it the most important summer habit whenever they leave the house for a long period of time.
French women have usually several different sunscreens with different SPFs in their beauty cabinet. Indeed, French women prefer SPF30 and SPF50 for outdoor, shopping, and traveling. Whereas if their usual place of work is an office, it’s fine for them to use only SPF20 indoors.
The Best French Sunscreens For Every Skin Type And Any Occasion
French women use different sunscreens based on their skin type and for different occasions. So whether tinted, waterproof, or anti-aging, the French have got you covered when it comes to sunscreen. With incredibly sharp and effective formulas, here are the best French sunscreens to pick up on your next trip to the French Riviera.
Best Sunscreens For The Beach
When French women go to the beach or will be in full sun, they use a full-strength sunscreen of at least 50. French women don’t like to lay down in extremely harsh sunshine for hours and hours. They usually limit their amount of time in the sun (especially between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.), seek shade, and apply an SPF50 every hour. Whether French women choose chemical sunscreens or mineral formulas, they usually opt for the highest SPF possible—even on nonbeach days—for exposed areas, like the face and hands.
- La Roche-Posay Anthelios Melt-In Sunscreen Body & Face SPF60
- Vichy Capital Soleil Body & Face Sunscreen Lotion SPF60
- La Roche-Posay Anthelios Melt-in Milk Body & Face Sunscreen SPF100
Best Sunscreens For Swimming And Outdoor Sports
If you’re swimming or sweating due to outdoor activities, it’s vital that you find a waterproof sunscreen that can last when you are spending a day at the pool or beach. For swimming and outdoor sports, the French opt for chemical over mineral sunscreens since the latter sits on the skin’s surface. Meanwhile, some sunscreens like Shiseido WetForce promises to work better when you get wet.
Best Sunscreens For Daily Use
A day at your desk is not the same as a day spent at the beach on the French Riviera. But the radiation that’s absorbed indoors can be just as pernicious since cancer-causing UV rays can penetrate glass. For daily use, French women prefer to use ultralight, hydrating formulas that are particularly beneficial for closed-window corporate spaces, where air tends to be dry. In addition, tinted moisturizers with a good decent amount of SPF in it may offer an additional element of protection against threats posed by our light-emitting devices.
Best Tinted Moisturizers
- Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer SPF30
- La Mer The Radiant SkinTint SPF30
- Clarins UV Plus Anti-Pollution Sunscreen Multi-Protection Tint SPF30
Best Primers With SPF
Best Sunscreens For Acne, Oily Skins
If you have prone to breakouts or oily skin you might be hesitant to use sunscreen for fear of adding excess shine. But in fact, those skin types may need SPF the most. Indeed, acne stems from a compromised skin barrier, which can be further weakened by UV exposure. In addition, some acne treatments, such as retinol increase photosensitivity and sun exposure can darken acne scars. French women with acne and oily skins usually stick to non-comedogenic formulas and consider switching to a facial sunscreen to protect specific blemish-prone areas.
- La Roche-Posay Anthelios Clear Skin Dry Touch Sunscreen SPF60
- SkinCeuticals Physical Matte UV Defense SPF50
Best Sunscreens For Sensitive Skins
French women with very sensitive skin prefer mineral formulas (fragrance-free) that sit atop the skin’s surface, making them less irritating than chemical ones. Indeed, chemical sunscreens penetrate the skin and can become allergenic in the presence of sunlight. Check out my article on the best French mineral sunscreens for sensitive skins.
- Shiseido WetForce SPF50+ Sunscreen
- La Roche-Posay Anthelios Tinted Mineral Ultra-Light Fluid SPF50
- Avène Mineral Sunscreen Fluid SPF 50+
Best Sunscreen For Mature Skins
Did you know that 90 percent of the visible signs of aging including fine lines, wrinkles, hyperpigmentation, uneven skin tone, and texture are attributed to UV exposure? That’s why French women believe that taking preventative measures to protect their complexion from UV rays will help to keep their skin healthy. Mature skin is generally more delicate, dry, and prone to fine lines and wrinkles. That’s why French women seek sunscreens that not only have a high SPF but are also hydrating and antioxidant-rich to prevent signs of aging from forming.
- Lancôme UV Expert Aquagel Defense Primer & Moisturizer SPF50
- La Mer The SPF50 UV Protecting Fluid
- SkinCeuticals Physical Fusion UV Defense SPF50
- La Roche-Posay Anthelios 50 Anti-Aging Primer with SPF50
And you, which one of those French sunscreens would you incorporate into your skincare routine? Which sunscreen are you using this summer? Please add your comment below.
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Bonjour! I’m Leonce, I’m French and I’m a Parisian expat currently living in the city center of Amsterdam (I previously lived in the 4th arrondissement of Paris, on the Ile-Saint-Louis). I created Leonce Chenal back in 2018 when I was living in London and missing my home country way too much. Because I truly believe you don’t have to be French or to live in France to experience the French art de vivre, Leonce Chenal is a French digital magazine to help you live your French life, wherever you are. Enjoy <3