13 Apr

Your questions, answered: Choosing the right sunscreen

Today I am answering a question from a reader, just like you!  Alexa writes:

The world of sunscreens is overwhelming, so how do you choose the right sunscreen? Some leave your skin way too greasy, while some don’t have a broad enough spectrum or enough antioxidants. Help!

Let me start by saying this: as Spring approaches and we can finally see the sun, sunscreen makes its way to the forefront of our minds.  But sunscreen should be worn every single day, regardless of the weather.  Which is why it is SO important to develop a sunscreen routine today, if you haven’t done so already.

I hope she reapplied! Coppertone.com

One of Alexa’s concerns had to do with antioxidants, which have been proven to help provide further skin protection beyond SPF.  The key antioxidant used in some sunscreens is Vitamin E, which helps the skin create a sun barrier and can be lost when you exercise outdoors.

As Alexa mentioned, some sunscreens can leave you feeling so greasy— yuck!— which is why you should start by using different products for your face and body.  We’re not kids anymore… no need to slather that thick Banana Boat on our faces.

Try these tips instead:

-On normal days when you won’t be at the beach or out in the elements for long periods of time, opt for a tinted moisturizer with SPF.  This option is especially good for folks with normal or dry skin.  You’ll still get the benefit of a tan without the harsh skin damage, plus you’ll be protecting yourself all day long!  Stila’s Sheer Tinted Moisturizer with SPF 30 gets great reviews and comes in a range of colors for every skin tone.  Get it at Sephora.com for $36.

-The Stila Tinted Moisturizer is oil free, but for those of you with oily or combination skin, you might also want to check out bareMinerals foundation with SPF 15, also from Sephora.

-If you are spending lots of time in the sun, this is when those antioxidants will be most important.  Coppertone has a new line of NutraShield sunscreens that are separated into formulas for both your face and body.  I’ve read great reviews about this product— it sinks in quickly, doesn’t leave a greasy residue, and it lasts!  Get both the face and body formulas on Amazon.com.

-Don’t forget your lips!  Make sure you use a chapstick or lipstick with SPF as well!  My favorite is Softlips, which you can pick up at any drugstore (they even have tinted Softlips, if you’re still lookin’ for some color!)

Hope this helps, Alexa!  And I hope the rest of you start factoring SPF into your makeup routine too!

Do you wear sunscreen everyday?  What are your favorite products with SPF?  Got a question that you’d like to see answered on the blog?  Email me at kim@blendingbeautiful.com!

{ posted: Tuesday, April 13, 2010 }


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