Should you use sunscreen under or over your day cream?

Should you use sunscreen over or under your serum, day cream or facial oil? We often get this question. Read our advice in this blog.

Types of UV filters

Synthetic (or chemical) UV filters penetrate your skin and absorb UV radiation. You should apply this 30 minutes before going out in the sun.

Natural (or physical) UV filters put a protective layer on the skin that reflects UV radiation, so that they cannot penetrate your body. These work immediately after application.

The relatively new Tinosorb UV filters combine the properties of synthetic and mineral filters.

A combination of filters is used in many non-pure or less pure cosmetics products. Only synthetic or a mix of natural and synthetic.

When to apply?

Always apply a mineral/natural UV filter last. These filters reflect the UV radiation. If you smear something over them, they will be less able to do their job. Or maybe you'll partially smear them.

With a synthetic UV filter you would almost think that you first apply the UV filter so that it can work properly and then your day care. However, that is not always the case.

  • The UV filter can ensure that the active ingredients from your day cream or serum are absorbed less well. Of course you don't want that. So rather apply your day cream or serum first and then your product with UV filter. Unless of course you have a day cream / serum with UV filter. Then you only need to apply a layer.
  • I would apply your facial oil after the UV filter. Or wait with your UV filter until the oil has absorbed properly. A good facial oil supports your skin barrier and ensures that you lose less moisture. If you apply the UV filter immediately after your facial oil, the UV filter may not be absorbed as well. Even if a good facial oil does not close your skin.
  • If you use creams with, for example, paraffinum liquidum or petrolatum (which I personally wouldn't recommend - not really pure ;-)), then I would first apply the UV filter. Paraffinum liquidum and petrolatum lay a layer on the skin, so that the UV filter cannot penetrate the skin as well or not at all. So its operation can not do.

Disadvantage synthetic UV filters

Most chemical UV filters are not very good for your health. And are harmful to the environment. Many also only protect against UVB radiation and not against UVA radiation. UVB radiation causes burning, UVA has a skin aging effect. And can cause hyperpigmentation, among other things. See the UV filter table below for the different UV filters in sunscreen and their protection.

Do you want to know more about sun and UV protection? Then read our blog 'What you need to know about sun and UV radiation.'