It's all fun and games playing out in the sun until you step inside to find a your skin has turned into a pink, blistered, boiling inferno.
Luckily we've moved on from the days of generic SPF and vague musings on sun damage and we're more conscious than ever of keeping ourselves protected in the midday heat. Finding a formula that suits your needs is the key to getting through your holiday un-scalded.
We've rounded up eight of the best.
Soltan Dry Touch SPF 30
Perfect for: beach holidays
Drying in 60 seconds, this sun screen will stop you bringing half the beach back with you at the end of the day. With a five star rated protection from UVA rays (the most aggressive kind) it’ll keep you shielded for up to two hours at a time without the sticky, greasy feeling that many creams leave behind.
£6, Boots, Buy it now
Ultrasun Body Tan Activator SPF 30
Perfect for: those that don’t tan easily
If you’re tired of hearing people declare that ‘you haven’t got much of a tan’ at the end of a holiday, it might be time to look into solutions for your stubbornly pale skin. Made in gel form, this Ultrasun formula contains an active ingredient that can boost the amount of melanin your skin produces, thus helping you tan more easily. It’s also free from the usual perfumes, mineral oils and preservatives found in most lotions, meaning it won’t upset even the most sensitive skin.
£28, Ultrasun, Buy it now
Odylique Natural Sun Screen SPF 30
Perfect for: vegans
Animal product free, this sun screen is made using only natural ingredients such as zinc and karanja, which are UV protective. It’s so gentle that you can even use it on your face, which frees up space in your wash bag and money to buy something else (hurrah). We found the texture really light and quick to absorb and the addition of antioxidant rich sunflower gave our skin a bright glow.
£25, Odylique, Buy it now
Nivea Sun Protect & Moisture SPF 30
Perfect for: the liberal applier
If you get through a lot of sun screen, you need a high quality version that won’t leave you bankrupt. Nivea Sun is a trusted brand offering immediate UVA and UVB protection. This one is water resistant and helps to keep skin feeling moisturised – it’s also been enhanced with Vitamin E, so you can stave off the wrinkles as well.
£8, Boots, Buy it now
Ultrasun Sports Gel SPF 30
Perfect for: active holiday makers
If you’re off on a sporting holiday such as a biking or hiking trip, or know you’re likely to play a lot of tennis or beach sports you need a sun screen that can keep up- the last thing you want is sweat shaped tan lines and melted cream pooling in every nook and cranny. Ultrasun has specially designed this formula to be fast absorbing and sweat resistant, meaning it won’t cause chafing and you can keep your head in the game.
£24, Ultrasun, Buy it now
Garnier Ambre Solaire SPF 15
Perfect for: the easy tanner
Some people are stuck with stubborn fair skin whilst others can pretty much tan under a light bulb. If you’re one of the lucky ones, a medium protection SPF like this one will suit your skin tone (although make sure to reapply regularly, no matter how well your skin copes in the sun). The added shea butter in this one will enhance your natural tan and add a glow to your skin as well.
£8, Superdrug, Buy it now
Nivea Sun Kids Protect & Moisture Roll On SPF 50
Perfect for: kids that won’t sit still
Any parent who has tried to apply sun screen to a squirming infant will welcome this easy to use roll- on formula from Nivea. It dispenses evenly in a light layer (so make sure you reapply regularly) and is small enough to carry around. The high factor cream is also extra water resistant, so can withstand the kids jumping in the pool immediately after application (which they will, inevitably and invariably, do).
£4.99, Superdrug, Buy it now
Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula Eventone Suncare SPF 30
Perfect for: dark skin tones
If you have dark skin and are worried about pigmentation or uneven skin tone, go for this beauty by Palmer’s. The combination of cocoa, shea and coconut butters not only smells divine but works to protect skin from the damaging effects that cause sun spots. It’ll leave skin feeling nourished and soothed and won’t leave behind any residue.
£6.25, iHerb, Buy it now