Can I use Sunscreen as Moisturizer

Can I use Sunscreen as Moisturizer
by freepik -

One of the most popular cosmetics cream moisturizers and sunscreen became the most important tools for maintaining healthy skin. Almost all men’s and women’s skincare wardrobes include sunscreen and moisturizer, or at least one from both. Not only that today there are all types of moisturizer and sunscreen for every skin in the market. The only thing one should know is what to buy and which is more important. Not only that, but you should also know when and how to use a product according to the situation. Tough people do have these products in their skincare wardrobe, still, a lot of people get confused between both. And there is no shame in that because both sunscreen and moisturizer are called at once, and not to forget both are there to protect and improve skin health. This confusion leads people to think can I use sunscreen as moisturizer? Which is also today’s topic. Well, if you have the same question I guess you have, then this article is for you. Not only this article also covers the main aspects of sunscreen and moisturizer.

Can I use sunscreen as moisturizer?

No, you should not use sunscreen as a moisturizer because both serve different purposes. Sunscreen provides protection from UV rays by blocking them from entering through the skin whereas moisturizer is used to hydrate or nourish the skin to avoid any dryness. If you use sunscreen as a moisturizer, it can not serve the same purpose as a moisturizer. You still need the moisturizer if your goal is to hydrate your skin, increase the glow or improve the aging skin. 

While there are moisturizers today available in the market that contains an amount of SPF. These moisturizers are in some way effective in performing the role of sunscreen but still, they do not fulfill the complete purpose of sunscreen. 

Difference between sunscreen and moisturizer

You may already know what’s the basic difference between sunscreen and moisturizer but that’s the only difference that both have? Well, that’s what we will find out.  


Sunscreen – sunscreen is known by many names such as – sun cream, sunburn, suntan lotion, or blackout. Besides these many names sunscreen is available in different types of form in the market,  most common are – lotion, spray, and gel(lotion being the popular one).  

The work of sunscreen is to either reflect back the UV sun rays or absorb them to avoid direct skin contact. The direct contact of ultraviolet rays to the skin can lead to skin tan and sun burn. There are different types of sunscreens available in the market, but the sunscreens with SPF label is regarded as best to protect the skin from contact with UV rays for long hours. Most of the sunscreen when applied to the skin can make the skin, tan and dark. This happens with sunscreen that contains tanning powder in it. Though there is no harm in that, it is a temporary tan if anyone wants it. Tan is gone after you wash your face. 

Moisturizer- moisturizer is a chemical agent that is why it is also known as emollients. Moisturizer being a chemical agent makes your skin soft and glowing from the outside. Besides that, the main work of moisturizer is to hydrate the skin by prevention of water evaporation from the skin. Moisturizers are helpful in improving skin health. The moisturizer comes in different types, each type is different for every skin. A person with oily skin should not use the same moisturizer as for dry skin. 

When to apply sunscreen? 

Sunscreen is used to protect the skin from UV rays. So, it makes sense if you use it on a hot day in summer. Using sunscreen in winter is not that important if you live in a cold area where the sun rarely shows. If you live in an area where winters are more like summers if compared with other regions then using sunscreen is not a bad idea. 

Besides that, the most important is what time of day you should use sunscreen. You should apply sunscreen during the daytime after taking a bath and remove it when going to bed. When applying sunscreen you should wait for 10 min before directly exposing your skin to the sun.  

If you do any sports activity or you sweat a lot then make sure to carry sunscreen with you and apply it again after washing your face. If you don’t sweat a lot or don’t do any exercise, still I suggest you to apply sunscreen twice a day because there is rarely any sunscreen in the world that can give you the same performance for the whole day. 

When to apply moisturizer? 

Unlike sunscreen, moisturizers can be used in both winter and summer. Because the goal of moisturizer is to hydrate the skin, you can use it in winters and in summers with sunscreen. This also proves our today’s topic point that if you want to hydrate your skin then you should use moisturizer and similarly sunscreen for protection. 

To Fulfill both the need you can use both sunscreen and moisturizer at the same time. You can read below how to use sunscreen and moisturizer at same time. 

Can you apply sunscreen and moisturizer at one time? 

Yes, you can apply sunscreen and moisturizer at same time. Besides that, the other point is that you can use moisturizer at night also if you have too dry skin. Or you can apply sunscreen in day time and moisturizer at night. But I will suggest you to give your skin some natural time and avoid any cosmetics on the skin for some time. 

While using the sunscreen and moisturizer at the same time one thing to keep in mind to use the moisturizer first so that the skin can absorb the moisturizer (unlike sunscreen moisturizer is absorbed by skin). Wait for 10 minutes and then apply sunscreen to create the protection layer on the outside of the skin surface. This is the best way to use both sunscreen and moisturizer at the same time. 

Most people do the opposite which will not do any harm. But the purpose of using a moisturizer is gone because if you use the sunscreen first it will create the layer and prevent the moisturizer from absorbing into the skin or hydrating the skin. 

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Sunscreen or moisturizer, which is more important? 

Sunscreen and moisturizer fill two different purposes and both are important to enrich your skin and protect it from aging and any harmful effects. But still, sunscreen is considered more important than moisturizer because it protects your skin from harmful UV rays. On the other hand moisturizers hydrate your skin which can be done with other alternative methods like – drinking enough water and eating high water fruits and vegetables. 

If you go out in sun without sunscreen, then it can lead to harmful skin issues, the biggest one is skin cancer. Yes, skin cancer is one of the most common cancers in the USA according to one survey, and it caused by too much exposure of skin under the sun. Every skin is different some skin is hard enough to tackle the harmful effects of the UV rays while others are very sensitive. One survey done in Australia showed the rise in skin cancer, and the surprising is not the rise in skin cancer but who are the victims. In a survey, it is revealed that most of the people who have skin cancer are from England. This is because in England has limited sun rays so their skin adapted to the same atmosphere and environment but when they came to Australia they are revealed to high sun exposure which is not within the limit of their skin and thus it is easy for them to adapt the skin cancer. 

Types of sunscreen and what to choose

It is important for everyone to know how many types of sunscreen are there and what is best for you, before buying any. 

There are mainly two types of sunscreen which are chemical and physical. Chemical sunscreen is made up of chemical ingredients. Chemical sunscreen when applied to the skin will penetrate the skin and absorb the radiation. Chemical sunscreen is more irritating and not compatible with sensitive skin types. On the other hand, physical sunscreen is made up of mineral ingredients. Unlike chemical sunscreen, physical sunscreen creates an outside layer on your skin and instead of penetration, it sits on the outside part of the skin. 

So what should you buy? 

Well, it easy to say that you should buy a physical sunscreen type but as it sounds it’s hard to find a genuine product in the market where the whole market is filled with chemical products. But don’t worry there are still many brands that provide genuine products if you search properly. Most of the time the physical sunscreen is expensive and not affordable for all. So, in this case, you can experiment with different types of sunscreen with fewer chemical ingredients. Not all skins are sensitive some can spare the effects of chemicals and some not.

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Some of my personal recommendations for sunscreen and moisturizers. 


Hi, gurbi is a fashion blogger, designer, and fashion consultant. He is 25 yrs old man who love the world of fashion.