Best Beauty Buys

Sun Care & Self Tanners

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        Best Self-Tanner for Body 2016

        St. Tropez Bronzing Mousse

        Best Self-Tanner for Body 2016
        WINNER 2016

        St. Tropez Bronzing Mousse

        To quote several makeup artists, this dihydroxyacetonepowered mousse glides on streakfree without a lot of effort or mess (thanks in part to a complimentary applicator mitt) and creates a natural-looking glow in the short and long term. The temporary bronzer delivers on the spot; the DHA produces a tan within hours that can last for several days. The only aveat in the mix? “You have to make sure that your skin isn’t dry before applying,” says Fabiola. “I spray legs with water, then apply a moisturizing lotion. After that, the solution goes on easier and looks more even.”

        St. Tropez | $42
        Best Body Sunscreen 2016

        Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry Touch

        Best Body Sunscreen 2016
        WINNER 2016

        Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry Touch

        “It doesn’t feel like you’re wearing sunscreen” is just about the biggest compliment you can pay to a sunscreen. And that’s exactly what Dr. Graber says about this sheer, fast-absorbing formula. You’ll get a comfortable, dry-touch matte finish, plus top-notch protection against UVA and UVB rays. “It’s broadspectrum, so it shields the body from those aging, damaging rays,” explains Dr. Graber.

        Neutrogena | $10
        Best Sport Sunscreen 2016

        Elta MD UV Sport SPF 50

        Best Sport Sunscreen 2016
        WINNER 2016, 2015

        Elta MD UV Sport SPF 50

        While the stellar protection (9 percent zinc oxide, which is “even superior to titanium dioxide,” says Dr. Palm) sets this formula apart in the category of best water-resistant SPF, its clean finish helps hoist it into the top spot. It spreads easily and is transparent so you can avoid that pasty or chalky look. And it won’t run off while you’re sweating either, says Dr. Nazarian, who adds that the SPF occupies a permanent place in her beach bag.

        $22
        Best Self-Tanner for Face 2016

        Clarins Intense Bronze Self-Tanning Tint

        Best Self-Tanner for Face 2016
        WINNER 2016

        Clarins Intense Bronze Self-Tanning Tint

        If the “intense” part of the name makes you nervous, keep calm and slather on. With this fast-acting lotion you get more of a sun-kissed glow than an artificial tint. With dihydroxyacetone, an ingredient that prompts pigment development in the upper layers of skin, this liquid is also tinted so you get an immediate payoff (and a deeper radiance develops within a few hours). The transformation is so subtle, you can do multiple applications to reach your desired effect, says makeup artist Yolonda Frederick-Thompson.

        Clarins | $38
        Best Mineral Facial Sunscreen 2016

        Colorescience Sunforgettable SPF 50

        Best Mineral Facial Sunscreen 2016
        WINNER 2016

        Colorescience Sunforgettable SPF 50

        You know how you’re supposed to touch up your sunscreen every couple of hours? Here’s a winner that’ll actually make that often “forgotten” task easy to do. With SPF 50 powder loaded into this portable brush, you can reapply faster than you can say “mineral-based broad-spectrum protection.” Dr. Palm says, “I get men and women alike to use this product,” adding that you can choose one of four shades to work into your complexion.

        Colorescience | $64
        Best Facial Sunscreen 2016

        Elta MD UV Clear SPF 46

        Best Facial Sunscreen 2016
        WINNER 2016, 2015, 2014

        Elta MD UV Clear SPF 46

        In a world crammed full of beauty hybrids (BBs, CCs, EEs—we could go on), let us explain this multitalented pick: It’s a broadspectrum sunscreen. And moisturizer. And primer. The lotion (which comes in a tinted and untinted version) is lightweight and nonsticky, and it has both physical protection (to prevent rays from penetrating skin) as well as chemical blockers (which absorb and then scatter UV rays) to fight everything from skin cancer to hyperpigmentation. And it won’t feel slick under makeup. “This formula really raises the bar,” says Dr. Chiu. It’s not oppressive, and it promotes the health of your skin, she says.

        $32
        Best Oil-Free Facial Sunscreen 2016

        Elta MD UV Clear SPF 46

        Best Oil-Free Facial Sunscreen 2016
        WINNER 2016

        Elta MD UV Clear SPF 46

        Tell your inner skeptic (the one who feels a breakout coming on at the mere mention of the word “oil”) to chill out. This is an oil-free formula—and it says “clear” on the label for a reason: “It’s invisible, even on the darkest skin tone, and yet it contains 9 percent zinc. That’s unbelievable!” says Dr. Ingleton. And while it’s got your SPF handled, this fixer
        also helps keep blemishes and spots at bay with antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. “This is my go-to for acne patients,” says Dr. Bank.

        $32
        Editor’s Pick
        Editor's Pick - Multitasking SPF 2016

        La Roche-Posay Effaclar BB Blur

        Editor’s Pick
        WINNER 2016

        La Roche-Posay Effaclar BB Blur

        “The best sunscreen is the one you’ll actually wear. This lotion has bonus benefits: It plays down pores and lines.”
        —ANGELIQUE SERRANO, BEAUTY DIRECTOR

        20% off at laroche-posay.us from 4/15 until 5/12; use code INSTYLE20

        La Roche Posay | $30
        Editor’s Pick
        Editors' Pick 2015

        Murad Invisiblur Perfecting Shield SPF 30 PA+++

        Editor’s Pick
        WINNER 2015

        Murad Invisiblur Perfecting Shield SPF 30 PA+++

        Some sunscreens claim to be invisible, but, well ... they’re not. Murad is so confident about its claim that the formula actually comes in a transparent vial. But sunscreen is just the start. Peptides encourage collagen production, while black currant and rosemary improve overall texture.  

         

        Murad | $65
        Best Self-Tanner for Body 2015

        St. Tropez Dry Oil

        Best Self-Tanner for Body 2015
        WINNER 2015

        St. Tropez Dry Oil

        Never seen an oil-based sunless tanner before? That’s because the tanning agent DHA usually repels water. (St. Tropez spent two years developing this genius blend.) Smooth it on for instant vacation legs—the dry oil “gives a beautiful golden glow,” says Julie Harris—and eight hours later you’ll have a convincing tan.

        St. Tropez | $50
        Best Eco-Friendly Facial Sunscreen 2015

        Colorescience Sunforgettable SPF 50

        Best Eco-Friendly Facial Sunscreen 2015
        WINNER 2015

        Colorescience Sunforgettable SPF 50

        What looks like an elegant powder—both on the face and in the self-dispensing brush—is one of the high- est SPF mineral sunscreens on the market. “I’m always telling patients to reapply sunscreen every two hours, but it’s so hard to do,” says Dr. Annie Chiu, who keeps one of these in her purse. “This makes it easy.”

        Colorescience | $64
        Best Overall Body Sunscreen 2015

        Neutrogena Ultra Sheer SPF 100+

        Best Overall Body Sunscreen 2015
        WINNER 2015

        Neutrogena Ultra Sheer SPF 100+

        With a little salt and a lime, a shot of tequila disappears quickly. Covering your body in a full ounce of sunscreen? Now that’s a challenge. “That’s the amount you need to get full coverage,” says L.A. dermatologist Karyn Grossman. “It’s tough to spread so much lotion.” This spray makes short work of the task; mist on the broad-spectrum shield until “skin looks wet.

        Neutrogena | $11
        Best Overall Facial Sunscreen 2015

        Elta MD UV Clear SPF 46

        Best Overall Facial Sunscreen 2015
        WINNER 2015

        Elta MD UV Clear SPF 46

        A chemical and physical sunscreen in a totally clear formula? We were shocked too. “It’s superlightweight but gives great coverage,” says Miami dermatologist Leslie Baumann. A generous 5 percent concentration of niacinamide combats the sun’s wrinkle-inducing effects.

        EltaMD | $32
        Best Self-Tanner for Face 2015

        Clarins Liquid Bronze Self Tanning

        Best Self-Tanner for Face 2015
        WINNER 2015, 2014

        Clarins Liquid Bronze Self Tanning

        Its glow looks super-natural, not “supernatural,” says L.A. makeup artist Tracey Levy, who suggests applying this lotion under morning makeup and letting it “build throughout the day, effortlessly.” The formula also complements a spectrum of complexions, from fair to olive. Clarins

        Clarins | $36
        Editor’s Pick

        Dr. Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Daily Glow Moisture

        Editor’s Pick
        WINNER 2014

        Dr. Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Daily Glow Moisture

        This slow-developing self-tanner is as helpful to skin as real tans are harmful. With glycolic acid, moisture-sealing phospholipids, and pore-clearing willow bark extract in the mix, it’s no wonder Dr. Gross nicknamed it "Glotion."
         

        Dr. Dennis Gross | $42
        Best 2014 Sport Sunscreen

        SkinCeuticals Sport SPF 50

        Best 2014 Sport Sunscreen
        WINNER 2014

        SkinCeuticals Sport SPF 50

        What does it take to win this category? Powerhouse UVA/UVB-blocker titanium zinc oxide, for one. But with added antioxidants-and a plankton extract that N.Y.C. plastic surgeon Adam Kolker says protects skin from heat stress-this player goes the extra mile.

        Skinceuticals | $40
        Best 2014 Body Sunscreen

        Elta MD SPF 30+

        Best 2014 Body Sunscreen
        WINNER 2014

        Elta MD SPF 30+

        An allover sunscreen that’s refined enough to use on your face? Now we’ve heard everything. The transparent zinc oxide in this lotion won’t leave you chalky or alter your makeup. Best of all, says Dr. Susan Binder, this multitasker cuts down on medicine-cabinet clutter. “It’s so light you could use it as a daily moisturizer.”

        EltaMD | $30
        Best 2014 Eco-Friendly Sun-Care Brand

        Colorescience

        Best 2014 Eco-Friendly Sun-Care Brand
        WINNER 2014

        Colorescience

        This hybrid line thinks like sunblock but acts like makeup. Its Skin Bronzing Face Primer contains dimethicone, “a silicone base that gives you a flawless look,” says Smithtown, N.Y., dermatologist Marina Peredo. But since there’s zinc oxide and titanium dioxide in every facial product, protection is a top priority.

        Colorescience | Primer, $46
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