In the dog days of summer, when you’re sporting a steady tan and skin-searing sunburns are less frequent, it’s too easy to skip the sunscreen and head straight outside for a run, ride, or round of golf unprotected. Don’t do it. You’re just as subject to damaging ultraviolet rays as you were when all lily-white in May – especially to the deep-penetrating UVA rays that cause wrinkles and skin cancer. Always slop on a broad-spectrum, oxybenzone- and paraben-free sunscreen with an SPF of 30 to 50. We think VMV Hypoallergenics’ Armada Face Cover 45 is one of the best.
We used Armada throughout a weeklong fishing trip in July that saw zero days of cloud cover. Sitting in a boat on the open water under the beating sun for hours on end, not one of us got burned – even though we sweat through our shirts and even jumped in the lake a few times to cool off. And since it contains UVA-blocking minerals zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, it also protects against deeper, more serious sun damage. Non-greasy Armada stayed put, never dripping into our eyes or gunking up our rod handles or lures. Plus, the stuff doesn’t leave a chalky pallor or feel like a heavy clay mask on your face like so many other mineral-based sunscreens do. And thanks to no synthetic fragrances, we didn’t smell like coconuts or, worse, a noxious chemical cocktail.
Armada costs more than the average Aveeno, Coppertone, or other quality mineral blends, but the combination of no streakiness, no slippery feel, no cakey feeling – and no burns – makes it worth every dime. [$46, 3 oz; vmvhypoallergenics.com]