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SPF Cocktailing: The Trend Dermatologists Do Not Approve Of

woman with spf on face

The beauty world has seen its fair share of innovative trends and with the rise of TikTok, trends like face yoga and skin flooding have earned their place in our skincare routine. However, not all of them are necessarily worth the hype. One recent trend that has raised eyebrows among dermatologists is what #beautytok is calling SPF cocktailing. While the idea of mixing sunscreen with makeup products might seem like a time-saving solution, it’s a trend that professionals in the skincare industry do not endorse. In this article, we will delve into what SPF cocktailing is, why it is discouraged by dermatologists, and explore alternative methods to ensure proper sun protection for your skin.

What is SPF Cocktailing?

SPF cocktailing is a viral beauty trend that involves mixing sunscreen with other makeup products before applying them to your skin. The idea is to streamline your routine by combining sunscreen with your foundation, concealer, or other cosmetics, with the aim of achieving sun protection while also cancelling out any white cast your sunscreen might leave.  While this concept may sound tempting, it comes with significant drawbacks.

Why You Shouldn't Mix Sunscreen with Makeup

1. Decreased Sun Protection: The primary concern with SPF cocktailing is that it can decrease the effectiveness of your sunscreen. Sunscreen products undergo rigorous testing to determine their SPF ratings, and altering their composition can compromise their ability to provide adequate sun protection. Mixing sunscreen with makeup or other products may lead to uneven distribution and a lower SPF value than advertised.

2. Inadequate Application: To achieve the stated level of sun protection, sunscreen needs to be applied evenly and generously to all exposed skin areas. However, some certain makeup products can cause components in sunscreen to separate when mixed, making it challenging to ensure uniform coverage. This results in inadequate application as certain areas of the face might be more vulnerable to UV damage.


3. Product Incompatibility: Sunscreen formulas are meticulously designed to work effectively as standalone products. Combining them with other skincare or makeup items can lead to chemical interactions that alter their composition and potentially cause skin irritation or allergies.

4. Unpredictable Outcomes: Lastly, SPF cocktailing can yield unpredictable results as it is simply not how the products are formulated to function.

Alternatives to SPF Cocktailing

Image by Sephora

1. Layering: Instead of mixing sunscreen with makeup, apply sunscreen as the first step in your skincare routine. Allow it to fully absorb into your skin before applying makeup. This ensures proper sun protection and maintains the integrity of both products.

2. Using Chemical Sunscreens: If you are worried about white cast, opt for chemical sunscreens instead. There are plenty of chemical sunscreens that are suitable for sensitive skin and blend in without a trace!

3. Broad-Spectrum Makeup: Look for makeup products that contain built-in broad-spectrum SPF protection. These products are specifically formulated to work together, ensuring that your skin receives adequate sun protection without compromising your makeup.

4. Sunscreen Touch-Ups: Carry a portable sunscreen product, like a powder or spray, to reapply sunscreen over makeup throughout the day. This way, you can maintain sun protection without interfering with your makeup.

While SPF cocktailing may seem like a convenient shortcut to sun protection while enhancing your makeup, it’s a trend that dermatologists do not endorse due to its potential drawbacks. To keep your skin safe from harmful UV rays, it’s essential to use sunscreen as directed and consider alternatives such as layering, using broad-spectrum makeup, and incorporating sunscreen touch-ups into your daily routine. By prioritising proper sun protection, you can maintain healthy, radiant skin while still enjoying your favourite beauty products.


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