Sunscreen Sprays: Easy alternatives for ample SPF protection

With the sunnier skies of summertime above us, it’s time to slip into that new bikini you’ve been excited to show off your hard-earned beach body in. Although a waterproof mascara and SPF foundation is all well and good, before you set off under the glare of the sun’s rays, there’s one essential beauty – and health – accoutrement that no one should never be without in the heat of the summer season: sunscreen. And in particular, SPF (sun protection factor) sprays.
For those that recoil at the thought of slathering greasy, mineral sunblock on your perspiring skin, SPF sprays offer an easier and lighter application to protect the skin from sunburn, sunspots and the aftermath of a day of tanning under that big gold ball in the sky. To help, Gafencu has shortlisted some standout sunscreen spray products that may aid in beating the damaging impact of those summer rays.

1. Coola Suncare Classic SPF 30

Spray-on sunscreens skin protection spf beauty accessories gafencu coola sunscreen

Chemically based and vegan, this is one of the best overall spray-on sunscreens. Suitable for all skin types, water-resistant and with recyclable packaging, it should be applied 15 minutes prior to sun exposure and then reapplied after 80 minutes of swimming or sweating. It’s non greasy and imparts a delicate peach scent.

2. Banana Boat Ultra Sport

Spray-on sunscreens skin protection spf beauty accessories gafencu banana boat

Clinically proven with a wide range of broad-spectrum options – with SPF of 15, 30, 50 and 100 – this is the best option for prolonged outdoor activity, such as running and hiking, where profuse sweating is on the cards – especially in Hong Kong’s hot and humid summer months. Ideal for athletes, it doesn’t require reapplication for two hours.

3. Filorga UV-Bronze Nutri-Regenerating Anti-Ageing SPF 50

Spray-on sunscreens skin protection spf beauty accessories gafencu filorga

This is a water-resistant and anti-ageing sun spray for the entire body. It contains an effective anti-oxidant stimulated by the sun’s rays for high UV protection and also combines a collagen booster with hyaluronic acid to boost the skin’s natural elasticity.

4. Clarins Sun Care Body Lotion Spray SPF 50

Spray-on sunscreens skin protection spf beauty accessories gafencu clarins

A good all-rounder, this sunscreen spray is perfect for all types of skin in all conditions and activity. Offers impressive sun protection via a non-greasy liquid texture that spreads easily and envelops skin in a gentle coating. It features a water- and sweat-resistant formula and is enhanced with botanical extracts to keep the skin moist.

5. Soleil Toujours Clean Conscious Antioxidant Sunscreen Mist SPF 50

Spray-on sunscreens skin protection spf beauty accessories gafencu soleil

Hailed as the only 70 percent organic, sunscreen mist formulated without the use of oxybenzone. Its antioxidant-rich formula hydrates the skin – while being non-greasy, fast-drying and water resistant for up to 80 minutes. The manufacturer uses sustainable, recycled, and biodegradable materials whenever possible and is committed to replace 95 percent of all petroleum based plastic packaging with bio-plastic (plastic materials made with biodegradable properties).

6. Ampleur VC Sun Protect Spray SPF 50+ / PA++++

Spray-on sunscreens skin protection spf beauty accessories gafencu ampleur

This sunscreen spray is infused with no less than three types of vitamin C derivatives to boost anti-oxidation, while maintaining sebum control and melanin control. The manufacturer’s VC sun protect spray is a quick way to cover the body all over before you hit the beach – shielding the wearer against harmful UV rays.

7. Esthederm Sun Bronz Impulse UV inCellium Face & Body Spray

Spray-on sunscreens skin protection spf beauty accessories gafencu esthederm

Incorporated with inCellium, an exclusive technology that is believed to boost the skin’s defenses against harmful radiation while still enabling the wearer to enjoy the benefits of sun exposure. It readies the skin for outdoor summer activity by strengthening its natural defenses, while helping to achieve a natural, even tan. It’s antioxidant action protects the skin from photo-ageing and UV damage.

8. Supergoop! Play 100% Mineral Body Mist SPF 30

Spray-on sunscreens skin protection spf beauty accessories gafencu supergoop

Taking a more playful approach while still affording protection from the sun’s harmful rays. Have outdoor fun with friends while indulging all your favourite al fresco activities, knowing that you are protected with a quick-and-easy application before enjoying sun-blessed entertainment.

9. La Roche Posay – Anthelios Ultra Resistant Invisible Spray SPF 50+

Spray-on sunscreens skin protection spf beauty accessories gafencu La Roche Posay

Designed specifically with sensitive skin in mind, this is a lightweight, non-greasy and highly protective sunscreen spray. It uses the maker’s patented filtering system to offer very high, broad, photo-stable UV and infrared protection. It’s also dermatologically tested and fully hypo-allergenic as well.

Turn back time with these face serums

As we get older, skincare naturally becomes more of a priority. With that very much in mind, there are five anti-ageing products you really ought to get better acquainted with.

Turn back time with these face serums gafencu magazine beauty clarins

First up, there’s Clarins’ Double Serum, with its double formula said to extend across a total of 21 effective anti-ageing water and oil-soluble ingredients, all of which are combined into just one bottle. Thankfully, this covers the big five vital skin requirements – regeneration, nutrition, hydration, oxygenation and protection.

Turn back time with these face serums gafencu magazine beauty rareskin fuel

Next, with potent ingredients said to stimulate cell renewal, gently exfoliate dead skin and erase fine lines, is RARE SkinFuel’s Eye & Lip Illuminating Serum. Apparently containing all you need to brighten your eyes and lip areas, it combines native Australian extracts with such potent skincare staples as Hyaluronic Acid and Lactobacillus. Ultimately, this serum is said to contain all the ingredients needed to tackle daily inflammation, reduce damage and conceal the tell-tale signs of stress.

Turn back time with these face serums gafencu magazine beauty dior

Another age-defying serum stems from Dior’s research into mother cells and floral know-how – Dior Capture Totale Super Potent Serum Rich Crème. After seven days of use, its manufacturer claims your skin will be visibly smoothed, firmed, plumped, toned, evened and radiant with health. After a month’s use, apparently, the result is all but permanent.

Turn back time with these face serums gafencu magazine beauty Acqua Pantelleria

Number four on the list comes courtesy of Giorgio Armani Beauty in the form of its Acqua Pantelleria Antioxidant Treatment, an anti-ageing lotion enriched with proprietary regenerative ingredients. Essentially, the Acqua Pantelleria serum-lotion is a slightly gelled formula designed to transform into an intensely hydrating water that delivers increased softness and elasticity.

Turn back time with these face serums gafencu magazine beauty omorovicza

Finally, there’s the Ultramoor Mud Mask from Omorovicza, an anti-ageing mud mask said to harness the power of Hungarian moor mud, which is rich in calcium and magnesium, as a way of drawing out any unwanted impurities.

Perfect Chinese New Year gifts for your loved ones

If you’re looking for more than the usual red packets to gift your nearest and dearest to celebrate the upcoming Year of the Rat, we at Gafencu have curated a special collection of Chinese New Year gifts that are sure to add a special touch to your lunar festivities. 

Blancpain’s Métiers d’Art Collection

Chinese New Year gifts

As the Rat supercedes its porcine predecessor this Chinese New Year, luxury brand Blancpain is launching its very first watch with a porcelain dial designed and manufactured in its Métiers d’Art workshops – The Métiers d’Art Porcelaine special edition. Each unique timepiece features an enamel painting of three rats on a white gold case that is encircled with diamonds. Besides, the eight-piece collection is powered by a Calibre 1154 automatic movement, blending beautiful form with undeniable functionality in true style.

Johnnie Walker Blue Label: Year of the Rat Limited Edition

Chinese New Year gifts

In celebration for this Chinese New Year, Johnnie Walker, the master of fine whiskies is launching its new Johnnie Walker Blue Label: Year of the Rat Limited Edition. The special cask is decorated with a rat on golden ingots, and comes with the rightly flavoured Johnnie Walker Blue Label whisky ‒ crafted by a group of expert blenders including Jim Beveridge who was named the Master Blender of the Year twice. Without a doubt, this should rank high on your Chinese New Year gifts list.


Piaget Altiplano with two rats

Chinese New Year gifts

Honouring the zodiac animal of the upcoming Chinese New Year, the Swiss horology brand Piaget has altered the dial of its emblematic Piaget Altiplano to feature two white rats on a Grand Feu cloisonné enamel dial. The white gold case is further emphasised with dazzling diamonds to give it the perfect finishing touch. In addition, the luxury fashion maison is also launching the Possession collection for this festive season, offering a wide selection of Chinese New Year gifts for the watch lover in your life. 

Vins d’Alsace food and wine pairing guide

Chinese New Year gifts

Savouring authentic delicacies is an undeniable Chinese New Year tradition. The French wine-making region of Alsace is taking it up a notch by introducing a guide revealing which wine would be perfect for which dish. For instance, the Pinot Noir will go well with the traditional Hong Kong style dish of Poon Choi. It is indeed a very practical gift that will make this Chinese New Year dinner an unforgettable one for the taste buds. 

Brunello Cucinelli’s Valentine’s Day and Chinese New Year Special

Chinese New Year gifts

Keeping up with the notion that the Lunar New Year is best celebrated with your loved ones, Italian fashion company Brunello Cucinelli is showcasing a specially curated collection. This ensemble is complete with useful gifts such as bags, scarves and sneakers for both men and women. With the colour red being its central motif, each product offers a vintage yet contemporary appeal. 


Golden Double Serum

Chinese New Year gifts

Inspired by the auspicious colours of the Chinese tradition ‒ red and gold – the French skincare manufacturer Clarins has revamped its Double Serum bottle for the Year of the Rat. With 21 strong anti-aging ingredients, the serum is an answer to a very radiant and youthful looking skin. Besides, the serum also optimises the five important skin functions ‒ regeneration, nutrition, hydration, oxygenation and protection to achieve flawless skin. At HK$900, the limited-edition serum is available online. 


Autavia CNY 2020 Year of the Rat Special Edition

Chinese New Year gifts

Luxury watchmaker TAG Heuer is introducing its exclusive collection Autavia CNY 2020 Year of the Rat Special Edition that pays tribute to Chinese culture. With a caseback that showcases a rat holding a steering wheel, the timepiece combines the brand’s roots in motor racing with the zodiac animal, making it a great gift for the rat year. Moreover, its red dial that has the 1 o’clock mark replaced by the Chinese character “鼠”  is one of the stand out features of this product. Besides, the watch’s COSC-certified chronometer technology makes it a great present without any further doubts. 

Rouge Unlimited

Chinese New Year gifts

Described as the perfect gift for anyone who loves make-up, the Japanese cosmetic and skincare brand Shu Uemura launched its New Year collection. This #flamingreds series consists of six shades of limited edition matte lipsticks, three shades of lip amplifiers, a cleansing oil, eyebrow pencils and a foundation brush. With the colour red being the main colour of this collection, the Rouge Unlimited collection is sure to bring luck as a gift for the rat year. 

Fabergé’s Rat Surprise

Chinese New Year gifts

With over a hundred-year history of crafting beautiful ornaments for every occasion, Russian jeweller Fabergé, known for its egg-shaped pendants, continues this legacy with its latest series of Palais Tsarskoye Selo Red Lockets. Among the collection, the locket with the rat surprise is a perfect gift for the rat year. A 18K gold pendant enhanced with red guilloché enamel work and studded with diamonds opens to reveal a golden rat studded with shimmering diamonds. At HK$81,510, the Rat surprise jewelry is available for pre-order at Fabergé.com and at select Fabergé stockists.

Vacheron Constantin Metiers d’Art The Legend of Chinese Zodiac – Year of the Rat

Chinese New Year gifts

In time for the upcoming Chinese New Year, another renowned Swiss watchmaker Vacheron Constantin is unveiling two versions of its new Vacheron Constantin Metiers d’Art The Legend of Chinese Zodiac – Year of the Rat. With only 12 pieces available for each version, one is rose gold / brown and the other is platinum / blue. The watch comes fitted with a Caliber 2460 G4 movement and is visually enhanced with the intricate crafting on its dial featuring a rat mounted on the centre. 

Get the Look: Rain or shine, make sure you’re fine

get the look shine

Get the Look

As Hong Kong ladies know only too well, the city’s ever-changeable weather is no friend to long-lasting make-up. So, how then to sport a waterproof look, one capable of sustaining through rain or hail? Well, you could start with YSL’s All Hours Cushion Foundation to create an even base, then add a dab of Clarins’ Bronzing Compact for a radiant glow. For the eyes, opt for Emotionproof Liner and Emotionproof Mascara from Tom Ford for an au naturel look or choose Chanel’s Stylo Yeux Waterproof for a smoky impression.

Enhance the eyebrows with Diorshow Pump ‘N’ Brow and add colour to your eyelids with Palette 3 Couleurs Tri(O)Blique, both from Dior. Should you prefer a more liquid look, try Eye Tint from Giorgio Armani, before signing off with a dash of pink on the lips, courtesy of YSL’s Vernis À Lèvres Water Stain.

get the look shine

Sunscreen lotions that make sure you have fun in the sun

With summer already at its height, it’s time to bring forth the bikinis and search out the sunglasses as you get ready to hit the beach. Think on it, though, is your skin ready to meet the challenge of protracted exposure to the more harmful effects of the sun?

Thankfully, many of the world’s leading beauty brands have pre-empted your concern, introducing an impressive array of high-protection sunscreen lotions designed to counter harmful UV rays even as you bask in the seasonal sunshine.

Sunscreen lotions

First up is the Japanese personal-care brand Shiseido with its BB for Sports SPF50+ ∙ PA+++ range, which is said to not only protect your skin from UV rays, but also to counter any build-up of sweat, leaving you feeling fresh and perspiration-free. The brand has also looked to ward off any solar eclipse of the lips, with its UV Lip Color Splash SPF42 ∙ PA+++, available in three different shades, said to ensure all things mouth don’t go south.

Parisian marque Sisley, meanwhile, has focused on providing added protection to the more vulnerable facial areas, notably the nose, forehead and the region around the eyes. To this end, it recommends using two of its latest products – Super Stick Solaire Tinted Sun Care SPF 50+ and Super Soin Solaire Silky Body Cream SPF 30 – both of which are supposed to be brimful with next-generation mineral UVA and UVB screens. Apparently, saving you from sunburn isn’t enough for this particular dynamic duo, as they also find the time to ward off the odd wrinkle or two.

For those risk-averse enough to crave a complete protection kit, your best bet might be the veritable arsenal of face-care and skincare sunscreen lotions on offer from Clarins. If its bubbly brochure is to be believed, its Suncare Lotion Spray SPF50+ acts like an armour on the body, keeping your dermis free of UV damage. Equally handy is its indispensable After Sun range, which helps soothe sun-exposed skin while enhancing your lovingly nurtured vacay tan.

Text: Suchetana Mukhopadhyay

Tea Time: Five tea-based beauty products to try this season

Thanks to modern-day research, the humble tea has evolved so much from being our morning must-have drink to an essential part of our beauty regime. This season, we bring to you five tea-based beauty products that join the retinue of beauty items that are said to hydrate, smoothen and supposedly completely transform our skin.

Fresh Black Tea Kombucha Facial Treatment Essence

Tea-based beauty products

Fresh’s new facial essence liquid uses the goodness of kombucha or fermented sweet black tea to keep your skin hydrated for long hours. As light and soothing as water, it’s just the kind of moisture that keeps you glowing 24×7.

Fresh Black Tea Firming Eye Serum

Tea-based beauty products

Another tea-based beauty product from the stables of Fresh is the black tea-infused eye serum that works on the sensitive area around the eye to improve your skin’s elasticity. The result? A youthful under-eye glow.

Cha Ling Hand Cream SPF15

Tea-based beauty products 
Cha Ling believes that loose tea leaves contain loads of antioxidant properties. Its latest hand cream with SPF15 not only boasts these very-same antioxidant properties, but is also no-greasy unlike other hand creams. Give your hands the goodness of tea…

Aēsop Chamomile Concentrate Anti-Blemish Masque

This astringent, clay-based masque from Aēsop harnesses the goodness of chamomile tea, which is known for its anti-inflammatory properties. This means it’s a one-stop solution for blemishes, acnes and troubled skin.

Clarins Double Serum

Tea-based beauty products

Clarins’ Double Serum not only contains extracts of rare white tea, it is also loaded with 20+ herbal products including the all-healing turmeric. Thanks to its natural ingredients, the serum does it all… hydration, nutrition, oxygenation, regeneration and protection.

Text: Suchetana Mukhopadhyay

Preventing Pigmentation: Luxury skincare products to brighten up your skin

It’s much easier nowadays for a girl to hear that she’s glowing (even sans any potential baby in the oven), thanks to a slew of ever-more-innovative skincare products via luxury brands such as L’Occitane, Clarins and Shiseido. In fact, skin-brightening products have never been so plentiful, with so-called miracle formulas now crafted to combat the signs of ageing whether it be damaged by the sun, pollutants or just the unavoidable passage of time. Below you can find our editor’s picks for the latest and greatest skincare products to keep you looking and feeling bright.

skincare products to brighten

French cosmetics manufacturer L’Occitane is trusting to a touch of the wild in its bid to defeat dark spots via its new Reine Blanche Targeted Spot Care Duo. A day and-night combo, it is said to restore excessively sun-kissed skin and reduce uneven pigmentation by employing liquorice extracts and exfoliating agents to goad the skin into a calming renewal.

skincare products to brighten

Not ones to be satisfied with just one new product, Clarins has also introduced the White Plus Targeted Spot Brightener, a luxurious roll-on treatment designed to dab dark spots away. Said to target those areas in need of brightening with a soothing Vitamin C and tri-intensive brightening serum, your skin should be left balanced and bright.

skincare products to brighten

Shiseido has high hopes of its iconic cherry blossom formula, the active ingredient in its White Lucent MicroTargeting Spot Corrector, for removing unwanted signs of ageing. Promising to banish blemishes, the corrector uses microtargetting technology to eradicate any spots that are depriving your skin of its melanin.

Go for the Glow: Four new foundations to try this season

French luxury skincare brand Clarins is seemingly on a mission to persuade its keen adherents to turn over a new leaf this year, at least dermatologically, with its all-new Skin Illusion foundation being touted as the first veil foundation with a silky serum texture and a bare skin finish.

Hot on its heels is another haute French beauty brand – Guerlain – that has just reinvented its L’Essentiel Natural Glow Foundation. Promising everything from a 16-hour glow to guaranteeing an au naturel complexion, it’s apparently a 30ml miracle that’ll transform your skin forever, at least according to the company.

However, if it’s the most futuristic form of skincare that you seek, perhaps you should try out US-based cosmetics brand Hourglass’ hero product – Vanish Seamless Finish Liquid Foundation. A highly concentrated liquid, only a tiny drop of this foundation is said to be enough to give you full coverage. As an added bonus, it’s vegan and cruelty-free.

Meanwhile, for some extra radiance, why not seek out the Sheer Glow Foundation from French beauty marque NARS? In addition to the expected assurances of full coverage, even skin tone and long-lasting formula, it’s also said to provide maximum luminosity, giving you that ever-desirable glowing skin. Available in 20 shades, there’s sure to be something here for everyone.

Get the Look: Bring a spring flush to your cheeks with these pretty pinks

As the spring season approaches, your schedule will likely be flushed with outdoor events and perhaps an Easter get-away. With the feminine and floral festivities approaching  it is no doubt important to channel your inner girlish nature. As one of our most desired looks for spring comes courtesy of the fusion of many designer cosmetic brands, indeed, the mixture of Dior, to Chanel to Charlotte Tilbury and more. We’ve carefully selected the best and brightest pinks of the luxury make-up world. Here’s how you can get the look and embrace the time occasion of spring flings.

get the look

Get the Look:

To create the perfect rose pink look just in time for spring, begin with a dab or two of silky texture foundation courtesy of Chanel’s Le Blance Brightening Gentle Touch Foundation, then add a touch of YSL’s Shimmer Rush Face Palette for a shimmery rosy afterglow. If you’re looking to add just a hint more of radiance to your cheeks, touch up with Clarin’s GLOW 2 GO Blush and Highlighter Duo. Meanwhile, give yourself a set of bedroom eyes with Charlotte Tilbury’s Pillow Talk Luxury Palette, while adding a dash of mascara with Burberry’s Cat Lashes Ultra Black. No girlish look is complete, though, without soft matte lips and Givenchy’s Le Rose Perfecto 201, which is all but guaranteed to see you at peak kissability. However, if you’d rather plump up for a more sparkly affair, try Dior’s Lip Maximizer #003 Holo Purple, which has been said to bolster lips most impressively. Finally, apply Addiction’s Soprano Beige Nail Polish to your nails for a lasting precious pink patina.

Well Red: Willfully Scarlet in time for Chinese New Year



With the countdown to Chinese New Year drawing nearer, it’s now the time to gather the very best of retails rouges. Carefully selected by Gafencu’s staff are the most radiant accessories and scarlet fashion pieces to celebrate the Year of the Pig, or perhaps even save for this coming Valentines…

Look 1Scarlet Fashion

Jordy elastic sandal by Bally; Loafer in patent leather by TOD’S; Cuzco Kitten 45 mule by Aquazzura; Varina ballet flat in patent leather by Salvatore Ferragamo; Optic pump in velvet and PVC by Aquazzura; Shiva pump in patent leather by Aquazzura; Heeled mule by Jimmy Choo; Gianvito pump in patent leather by Gianvito Rossi

Look 2

Scarlet Fashion

Joli Rouge Velvet lipstick #742V by Clarins; Le Phyto Rouge lipstick #43 Rouge Capri by Sisley; Gongjinhyang Mi Glow lip balm #Wine Red by The history of Whoo; Rouge A Levres lipstick #18 Cherry Berry by Clé de Peau Beauté; Ecstasy Shine lip cream #400 by Giorgio Armani; Rouge Allure Velvet Lipstick #N°5 by Chanel (Limited Edition); Gongjinhyang Mi Glow lip balm #Red by The history of Whoo; Le Phyto Rouge lipstick #41 Rouge Miani by Sisley

Look 3

 Scarlet Fashion

Clayn mini-bag in quilted leather by Bally; Mini bag in weaved satin by Giorgio Armani; Piazza bag with top handle by Bottega Veneta; Small GV3 bag in two-tone leather by Givenchy;  Ferragamo Studio mini-bag by Salvatore Ferragamo; White Rock Road Luxe Sam mini-bag in crocodile-embossed leather by Kate Spade New York; 90s Vintage Logo shoulder bag by Versace; Shoulder bag by Valentino; So Foxy Fall Scene Sam bag with embellished leather by Kate Spade New York; Small Anouck bag in crocodile embossed leather by Claudie Pierlot; Marianne XB cross-body bag from Jimmy Choo’s Cruise 19 Collection

Look 4

Scarlet Fashion

Grace Lace pump by Rene Caovilla; Miu Crystal suede bag by Miu Miu; Graceful Bloom necklace and cuff by Atelier Swarovski; Lilaina pump in suede with crystals by Stuart Weitzman; Cloud clutch bag in satin with crystal bow clasp by Jimmy Choo; Bing 65 mule in suede with crystal strap from Jimmy Choo’s Cruise 19 Collection; Cross-body bag with coloured rhinestones by Giorgio Armani

Look 5

Scarlet Fashion

Two-tone pouch by Prada; Pendant earrings with coral and tassels by Giorgio Armani; Aqua Glow cushion and Powermatte lip pigment #Flame, both from NARS’ limited edition Lunar New Year collection; Woven necklace in nappa leather with metal pendants and tassels by Giorgio Armani; Pig motif charm keychain by Bottega Veneta; Sì Passione eau de parfum by Giorgio Armani; Timeless rose gold tone watch by Links of London; Butterfly motif charm keychain by Bottega Veneta; My Armani To Go cushion by Giorgio Armani; Edition N°5 eau de parfum by Chanel; Mini Friendship bracelets in 18K rose gold vermeil and silver, both by Links of London


Photos: Jack Law
Art Direction & Styling : San Wong