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Do You Really Need Anything Else Beyond Sunscreen for Face Skincare?

Sunscreen is an essential part of any skincare routine and has scientifically backed benefits for your skin. By protecting your skin from burns, damage, and premature wrinkles, it is a multi-faceted product that should be applied regularly, no matter your skin type.

This leads many to wonder whether or not it is necessary to add other products to their grooming routine given the wide ranging benefits.

For example, if sunscreen is so good at fighting the signs of aging, why do you need to use a moisturizer or anti-aging eye cream?

Good question!

Here we will discuss the benefits of using sunscreen in conjunction with other skincare products.

Why Sunscreen Is Necessary

One of the reasons men are interested in face and eye creams is that they want to improve the appearance of their skin by reducing wrinkles and fine lines.

But what got them into this jam in the first place? The answer is likely a blend of sun damage and genetics.

By neglecting their skin for years, the sun has taken its toll on this delicate and thin layer of skin. By using sunscreen, you can prevent this damage from happening, and by using other skincare products, you can repair the damage that has already been done.

The Only Two Other Necessary Products You Need

While sunscreen has many benefits, it is not a substitute for other skincare products.

Here’s why:

Cleansers are essential for keeping the skin clean and removing impurities. Using a cleanser daily helps remove dirt and grime trapped within your skin’s pores. By regularly using a cleaner, you’ll lift this dirt and help improve the complexion and texture of your skin, prevent breakouts, and reduce the appearance of pores.

Moisturizers, on the other hand, help to keep the skin hydrated and prevent dryness. This can help accelerate the healing of damaged skin, as well as protect your skin from developing further issues. In addition, this provides the skin with new suppleness and softness and assists in restoring the skin’s natural balance.

Simply put, sunscreen alone can not do the job that cleansers and moisturizers can.

Does SPF in Face Creams Work as a Substitute for Sunscreen?

We men are always looking for ways to cut corners. Whether it’s a 3-in-1 body wash or a 2-in-1 moisturizer and sunscreen, we love simple, and easy-to-use products.

There’s nothing wrong with that!

While some protection is better than nothing, studies have found that the SPF in moisturizers are inferior to a separate sunscreen. Additionally, moisturizers are not designed to be applied as liberally as sunscreen, so you may need to apply them more often when venturing outdoors. So, for the best coverage against the sun’s UV rays, always use a separate sunscreen in addition to face creams and eye creams.

Other Optional Skincare Products You Can Use (Toner, Exfoliator, and Eye Cream)

So cleansers and moisturizers are non-negotiable when it comes to necessary products to ensure that you’re taking proper care of your skin, but what about other skincare products?

Here are a few you should strongly consider adding to your routine:

  • Toner: Provides a much deeper clean than a cleanser and help to balance the pH level of your skin. After cleansing but before moisturizing, a toner ensures that the skin is adequately prepped for other skincare products. Toner also helps to minimize the appearance of pores.
  • Exfoliator: Helps to remove dead skin cells, which can clog pores and cause breakouts. They are gentle enough to use for more sensitive skin every week or even twice a week. They come in two primary types: chemical and physical exfoliation, which both have their benefits.
  • Eye Cream: These will help reduce dark circles, puffiness, and wrinkles around the eyes. Eye creams are specifically designed for delicate eye area and should be used daily. Older gentlemen see the most benefit from using an eye cream, as the skin around the eyes is thinner and more prone to dryness and wrinkles.


What’s the minimum SPF that should be used for sunscreen?

The Skin Cancer Foundation recommends an SPF of 30 or higher source. Sunscreens with an SPF of 30 filter out approximately 97% of the UVB rays. However, if you plan on spending an extended amount of time outside, you should use sunscreen with an SPF of 50 or higher. Additionally, reapply your sunscreen every two hours to ensure adequate protection from the sun’s UV rays.

Is sunscreen necessary for the rest of the body?

Your face and neck only make up a small portion of your total skin surface. Applied to the entire body, sunscreen will protect you from premature aging and sunburns and help reduce your risks of skin cancer. We advise always putting a light coat on exposed areas whenever you plan on going outdoors.

Should you be wearing sunscreen even if you’re indoors?

Although it’s generally assumed that sunscreen is only necessary when exposed to the sun’s rays, you should actually be wearing sunscreen even if you’re indoors, according to the Skin Cancer Foundation, UVA rays can penetrate windows and cloud cover and still cause skin damage.

Just because the weather is miserable or you are inside for most of the day doesn’t mean you should always skip on the sunscreen. Plus, if you get into the habit of applying it even when you aren’t doing yard work, heading to the beach, or going for a hike, you will be more likely to remember to apply it when you are outside.


To sum up, sunscreen is an essential part of any skincare routine. However, individuals should also consider other elements, such as cleansers, serums, and moisturizers, to gain the full benefits of a comprehensive skincare routine.

Additionally, lifestyle and environment should also be considered to create the perfect routine for individual needs. Poor skin conditions don’t happen overnight and take years to develop. By taking care of your skin now, you can prevent future issues from arising.

Adam Williams

As the lead editor of Tools of Men, Adam loves men's grooming products. Particularly of interest is managing facial hair and perfecting the art of the modern man's skincare routine. His work has been featured or quoted in several publications, including New York Magazine, Vice, Sharpologist, MIC, Elite Daily, and more. When Adam isn't working, he enjoys spending time with his two little kids who keep him both on his toes and young at heart.

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