I’ve briefly discussed sunscreen in my post about skin care but I will reiterate and emphasize on how crucial this step is to keeping our skin healthy and preventing damage often caused by the sun. I’ve noticed that more frequently the media and beauty industry are using the words “youthful” and “anti-aging” as a way to advertise and market their products. It seems as if everyone is out to find the “cure” or “secret” to staying young. The truth is that there are no shortcuts or ways to reverse time, keeping skin healthy and wrinkle-free starts from an early age and with proper skincare.
On my recent trip to Playa del Carmen, I made an extended effort to make sure I protected my skin from the sun by applying sunscreen (I used this and this on this particular vacation) 15 minutes before sun exposure and reapplying every few hours. Because Mexico was extremely humid, I found myself applying sunscreen more often because I felt the sunscreen would melt right off of my skin. Fast forward to post-vacation, I’ve noticed that while the rest of my body resembles a bit of a tan, my face in comparison is pale and pretty much the same as pre-vacation. To a 19-year old version of myself, it would have meant disappointment, but to a more sound and responsible self, it means success!
I’m not an expert by any means but would like to share some basic knowledge of sunscreen and what has worked for me. You will notice that most liquid foundations include an **SPF of 15, which in reality gives a false sense of protection against the sun. I never rely solely on the SPF included in makeup, instead I use a separate sunscreen underneath my base. I use Dermalogica’s Skinperfect Primer SPF 30 which is lightweight, easy to use, and because it it’s also a primer, it extends the wear of your makeup. This product can be used alone as a tinted moisturizer or under makeup and because of it’s versatility, it’s one I like to use all year round.
- layering SPF increases your protection from the sun’s damaging rays – false
- let’s take this example: sunscreen with SPF 30 + foundation with an SPF 15 DOES NOT equal 45 SPF
- wear sunscreen only when you’re out in the sun – false
- this is a common misconception. Many believe that because it is often gray or rainy in Seattle they don’t need to worry about sunscreen, the sunscreen rule, whether rain or shine, applies to everyone
- wearing a higher SPF is better and will keep me safe against sun damage – false
- while I rather not go into the specifics of why 100 SPF is not necessarily the best way to go (I’ll leave that to the professionals or you can read more here), my general rule of thumb is to find something that has at least 30 and no more than 50 SPF (I used 55 only because I couldn’t find 50 at my local Walgreen’s 😊)
**SPF = Sun Protection Factor