Why Asian skin needs suncream too

July 19, 2013
You might think that sun cream is the reserve of the pale and interesting and those who turn lobster-coloured in the sun.  But think again. Sun cream for Asian skin is just as important. Dark skin needs just as much protection as anybody else. Granted, our chances of sunburn and skin cancer are lower, and we are less prone to wrinkles than our Caucasian counterparts, but the sun can inflict other unpleasant side-effects on desi girls.
I think the biggest issue for Asian women (and men) is the thought of getting darker.  That age-old issue of us brown folk not wanting to look too, erm, brown.   We seek shade when it’s sunny, and pick a
foundation that’s too light for us.
I know this because I was one of those people, before I discovered that avoiding the sun can lead to vitamin D deficiency.  Now I let the sun toast my arms to charcoal.  As for ditching the lighter foundation, I’m still working on that.

The ugly truth about too much sun for Asian skin

However, I still try to wear sun protection on my face.  This is because too much sun gives us Asian
girls age spots and freckles, and an uneven skin tone.  And over-exposure can also leave a desi girl looking leathery.
It’s no secret that less sun damage = younger-looking skin.  And apparently the SPF in your moisturiser won’t cut it; you need an actual sun cream, that’s intended for purpose.
However, one of the big issues with using sun creams on your face is that most of the products on the market are greasy, thick and melt even the most waterproof makeup.  I know this first hand as I spent years using Ambre Solait, Soltan and other brands which were just sticky and made me feel even hotter. And as for being picture perfect – forget it, many holiday snaps have been ruined by a shiny face.
Also, as most sun creams advise reapplication every few hours to reap the full benefits, they’re pretty impractical for the face – especially if you’re wearing makeup, as nobody wants to spend their day applying and reapplying sun cream over a made up face.
So I’ve always come to the conclusion that you are faced with a choice – protect your face or look fresh-faced, you can’t do both.

Sun cream for Asian skin – a matte option

However, I recently discovered a sun cream for the face which actually stays matte under the skin, and you only need to apply once a day.  Ultrasun SPF 30 for Face is sold at QVC and Amazon and is a great little discovery.  I apply it in the morning over my moisturiser and under my makeup, and my face stays shine free all day.  I was super impressed by this product, as so many others which are intended for the face still left me feeling gloopy.
The Ultrasun face cream also achieves a rare thing, you don’t feel like you’re really wearing it.  OK, I’d be lying if I said that I feel bare-faced, but I certainly don’t feel like I’m wearing a sun cream.
However, at £20, you may be put off by the price.  There is a cheaper alternative out there, Superdrug’s Solait’s sun cream, which I’ve reviewed here.  But as you’d expect for a fraction of the price, it’s not quite the same – it doesn’t have the same wear-ability and goes a little dewy after a few hours.  However, on a budget, it’s still a much better alternative than using a sun cream for your body on your face.
So ladies, however deep your pockets, invest in a sun cream and keep freckles, age spots, patchy skin and leather at bay.
You can get Ultrasun’s sun cream from Amazon here.

About the Author


I’m a British-Bengali Muslim mum-of-two. My pictures aren’t filtered and neither are my words. I’m not a makeup artist, chef or lifestyle guru. I’m just me, sharing honest beauty reviews for brown skin, halal restaurant finds, travel inspo, mum life hacks, easy Bengali recipes and more. If that’s your bag, keep reading!

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