The return of warm weather is a signal for several things—sundresses, pretty cocktails consumed on patios, and daily body SPF. My face sunscreen habits are solidified and I never skip a day (it helps that I’ve found the best new sunscreens), however living in a climate with cold winters means I stay head-to-toe covered until spring. The rising temperatures are inverse to my clothing levels and arms and legs that haven’t seen the sun in months emerge like the groundhog to see its shadow.
Body sunscreen has had a slower renaissance period than the face. I want formulas that don’t stink, sink in quickly, and feel more like a luscious body lotion than a gloopy mess. I discovered an oil-based formula was the secret to zero white cast and hydrated skin in a texture that was nice to apply. A few years ago, the formula that had the industry buzzing was Sol de Janeiro Bum Bum Sol Oil SPF 30. That formula was limited edition and no longer for sale, but I found an exact replica. My formula du jour this summer is Kopari Sun Shield Body Glow SPF 50.
Shop now: Kopari, $39
Shop now: Ulta, $39
Like the Sol de Janeiro alternative, this pump-top formula has a host of oils, such as coconut, avocado, hibiscus seed, and macadamia seed oil, that make it hydrating and give skin that dewy quality. And this is where the two formulas differ: I prefer the gel-like texture of Kopari to the original. Oils that are too liquidy can be tricky to transfer from the bottle to your palm and from your palm to each body part without letting them drip or make a mess on your floor. The thicker viscosity allows me to smooth it over my arms and legs without messiness. Plus, it goes on without white cast and doesn’t stain clothing.
When it comes to body, I am all about the glow factor. Oils are great for moisturizing the skin and this one provides a visible, pretty sheen. I love applying some to my arms, collarbones, and legs, even at nighttime, because it catches the light and produces a natural highlight. It also comes in two shades: Original Gold, which is especially pretty on warm skin tones, and Rose Gold, which accentuates cool undertones. It also brings the summer vibes with a light coconut milk scent.
Finding a formula I love to rub on each morning makes it far more likely that my body SPF habit actually happens. Kopari Sun Shield Body Glow SPF 50 is my current obsession (and a great lookalike if you’re missing Sol de Janeiro’s).