The Best Luxury Face SPFs 2023

Words by
Pippa Lowe

8th June 2023

A luxury facial SPF is the most anti-aging part of our daily skincare routine, so if you aren't using one yet, why not? Here SPHERE curates the very best, with a variety of special extras. Whether you want to glow with health, hydrate your skin, or protect it from pollution, we've found the SPF for you.

A luxury facial SPF is most important (but also the most easily forgotten) part of our daily skincare routine. If you haven't got your facial SPF for summer yet, we present to you our luxury list of new releases and time-tested favourites. Each has been selected for their peerless skin protection from UVA and UVB rays, user-friendliness - it has to feel good on the skin - and extra benefits which make them an even worthier addition to your skincare routine.

For best results apply 20 minutes before heading out, and reapply every two hours or after swimming. We recommend using a quarter teaspoon for the face and neck, and don't forget your eyelids, ears, hairline and the area under your chin and the back of your neck.

The Glowy one - Summer Fridays 
Summer Fridays
Summer Fridays SPF 30 Mineral Milk, £36

This broad spectrum SPF 30 sunscreen, protecting against both UVA and UVB rays, provides a satin finish to wear alone or layer delicately under makeup for a dewy look whilst simultaneously shielding. This comes from the use of antioxidant ingredients such as Vitamin E and Squalane to intensely hydrate, leaving your face plump and luminous.

Developed to blend into a variety of skin-tones with a milky lightweight formula and perfect for those 'no-makeup' makeup days. Giving your skin all it needs to look and feel great (and protected) from one squeezy bottle.

Summer Fridays ShadeDrops Mineral Milk Sunscreen, £36

Available at Space NK and Cult Beauty

The Re-application One - Ultra Violette 
Preen Screen
Ultra Violette Preen Screen

Giving you the ability to top off your sun protection whilst maintaining the perfection of a pristine face of makeup is Ultra Violette's brand new release, Preen Screen, a reapplication mist sunscreen.

Easy to grab and use on the go, this unique mist not only gives your face an SPF boost but also visibly refreshes your makeup, ideal for hot and sweaty days where it's prone to melt away! Packed full of niacinamide and both Vitamin C and E to wick away any potential makeup melt, leaving you both glowing and protected. Mind (and makeup) at ease in just one fine spritz. 

Ultra Violette Preen Screen SPF 50 Reapplication Mist Sunscreen, £32

Available at Ultra Violette now and at Space NK. 

The Anti-Pollution One - Clé de Peau Beauté
Cle de Peau
Clé de Peau Exclusive UV Protective Cream

Defending skin against anything it may face is Clé de Peau, incorporating exclusive ingredients based from intuitive skin theory to effectively act as a blockade from environmental stressors.

Ranging from UVA and UVB rays to oxidation and carbon emissions, there's so much we bet you didn't know your skin needs shielding from but with this sunscreen there's no need to fret - it has you fully covered. Whilst protecting you from everything under (and including) the sun, this luxurious cream visibly re-texturises and primes the skin for flawless makeup application and a velvety smooth finish, with a lightly revitalising scent. 

Clé de Peau Beauté UV Protective Cream, £91

Available at Cult Beauty and Harrods.

The Life-Proof One - Shiseido
Shiseido Expert Sun

Water-proof, sweat-proof, tear-proof - may as well call this sunscreen life-proof. Japanese-made using both HeatForce and WetForce tech, Shiseido's sun protector lotion creates an impenetrable veil over your skin that actually strengthens when faced with water, sweat or heat.

Despite its turbo protection, this lotion stays light and flexible on the skin without suffocating it - putting up a barrier against all sun and air pollutants whilst allowing your face to breathe. Taking the tech up a notch further is its anti-oxidant rich NatureSurge complex, delaying the development of dark spots and ageing in a moisturising formula that strives to lessen those lines. 

Shiseido Expert Sun Protector Lotion SPF 50+, £34

Available in Boots and on Cult Beauty

The Anti-Aging One - Medik8
Medik8 Advanced Day Total Protect

Formulated with kind-to-skin sunscreen filters and Moringa extract to protect from environmental damage, Medik8's star ingredient to provide its tried-and-true age-defying effects is Carnosine.

This multi-tasking dipeptide works against two main causes of collagen breakdown and therefore ageing in our skin: glycation and exposure to infrared rays. By tackling the issue at the source, this clever cream has been proven to visibly pump youthfulness back into pores a day at a time and prevent further skin ageing in the process. Medik8 brings us the closest we'll get to time travel with a sunscreen that turns back the clock, literally. 

Medik8 Advanced Day Total Protect Age-Defying Moisturiser SPF 30, £57

Available at Feel Unique and Look Fantastic.  

The Traceless One - Glossier

This refreshing transparent watergel disappears completely into the skin, formulated with microcapsules packed with UVA/UVB filters to protect you from daily rays. Enriched with antioxidant broccoli and aloe extracts along with Vitamins E and P to neutralise those free radicals.

What helps make this sunscreen truly invisible however is its yeast and vegetal extract, allowing the gel to settle as a breathable and clear matrix over the skin. Leaving no trace but the quenching protection you need and a subtle orange scent under your nose. No pilling, no white-cast, nothing. Thanks Glossier.

Glossier Invisible Shield SPF 35, £20

Available online at Glossier or in-store at 43 King Street, Covent Garden.

The Mattifying One - By Terry
By Terry
By Terry UV Base Primer SPF 50, £60

For our T-zone sufferers is this mattifying and wonderfully priming base from By Terry.

A non-greasy concoction of Vitamin E and protective UV filters that seamlessly melds into the skin for a long-lasting matte finish, making a velvety canvas for whatever comes next. An effortless routine addition, here to combat the 12 o'clock shine. 

By Terry UV-Base Primer SPF 50, £60

Available at Space NK, Cult Beauty and Harrods.

The tinted one - Dr Jart 
Dr Jart
Dr Jart Premium BB Beauty Balm SPF 50, £35

Uniting make-up, moisture and sun protection is this ultimate multi-tasker from Dr Jart. In four different shades to stretch across a range of skin tones, this beauty balm provides a looks-like-you tint with a radiant finish.

Complete with niacinamide to aid skin's barrier and glycerin for instant weightless moisture upon application. Proven to visibly even the tone and improve the texture of your skin. This cushiony super-cream is an easy win for anyone, skincare should be simple - I say work smarter not harder. 

Dr Jart Premium BB Beauty Balm SPF 50, £35

Available at Boots and Space NK.