I ran out of foundation yesterday morning so, naturally, I sped over to my nearest drug store to get a replacement before work. I got to the pharmacy, headed over to the makeup section and was instantly overwhelmed. Anyway, as I was perusing, I noticed some options that had various levels of SPF (#sunscreen), and as a New Yorker, with a heat wave upon us, I opted for one of them. I ended up making the wrong decision – I won’t go into the specifics, but cakey is the most diplomatic way I can describe it. Needless to say, I was self-conscious for the rest of the day.

Today, I decided I’d get in the know and do some research. Turns out (I know, I’m the last one to know), there’s a whole market for SPF-infused makeup products! This took me down the road of comparison shopping and I learned a few things that I want to share with you.

So, ladies, listen up – here’s your save and splurge guide to SPF makeup:


Save: Loréal True Match Super Blendable Makeup

How much? $10
SPF number? 17
Why is it great? The sunscreen component is made up of pure titanium dioxide, which means less irritation for sensitive skin. Also, the finish is silky enough to feel good, but light enough for a non-cakey look.

Splurge: MAC Studio Waterweight Foundation

How much? $34
SPF number? 30
Why is it great? I got this as a gift last year, and I can tell you, this is the best foundation I’ve ever used. It’s water-based, so it feels like you’re wearing nothing, and you really only need a few drips, which makes for a longer lasting product.


Save: Almay Smart Shade CC Luminous Primer

How much? $7.88
SPF number? 15
Why is it great? This is the stuff of gods. Put on a small amount and instantaneously, that tired look you’ve been reluctantly rocking is gone. Plus, it stays in place all day, so no makeup lugging required.

Splurge: Coola Daydream Mineral Primer

How much? $42
SPF number? 30
Why is it great? It’s weightless, it’s infused with Coola’s signature Plant Protection®, and our VP of marketing can’t live without it. Need I say more?


: Maybelline Dream Fresh BB Cream 8-In-1 Skin Perfector

How much? $8.99
SPF number? 30
Why is it great? As a past Allure Best of Beauty Winner, you know you can trust this to do the job. It’s also oil-free, sheer, and you can add foundation or whatever other makeup you need right on top.

Splurge: Bobbi Brown BB Cream

How much? $46
SPF number? 35
Why is it great? This is the perfect BB option for someone with oily skin. Containing silica, it’ll minimize unwanted shine, and it has brightening and anti-redness ingredients. It’s not very cakey either, so you won’t see any of those ugly creases anywhere!

Happy makeup-ing!