26 February 2014

beautiful face

Anyone that knows me, is aware that I have a very strict sunscreen policy. Most of my friends, at one point or another, would have had me in their ear like a nagging mother about the 'importance of wearing sun protection' and so forth.

Brooke Walker and Francie Longo

I have heard every excuse in the book...

'But I like having a brown face'
'It gives me pimples'
'I have SPF8 in my foundation. That's enough'
'I only wear it in summer'
'My skin doesn't burn'

None of those excuses cut it with me, unfortunately. Brown face = premature wrinkles. Pimples? Try a different brand. SPF in your foundation? It's not enough. Only wear it in summer? Umm...pretttty sure the sun also comes out in winter... My skin doesn't burn? UVB rays are different to UVA rays (rays of the ageing kind).

If you want to age at a rapid rate & acquire premature pigmentation, those excuses will definitely work. But, if like most women, you want to slow down the ageing process, sunscreen should be the Robin to your Batman. The Minnie to your Mickey. In other words, you should always have it close by.

Some of the science behind sunscreen:

SPF (or Sun Protection Factor) is not, as many people believe, how 'strong' your sunscreen is. It simply means the amount of time you can spend in the sun before sun damage occurs. For example, the average person takes 10-20 minutes of direct sun exposure for damage to start occurring. If you choose a SPF of 15, that means you can spend 15 times longer in the sun. For SPF 30, it's 30 times longer. You catch the drift. In the US, you can get as high as SPF 100 (my sister had a fun experience with this while we were living the dream at Disney World in Florida. She looked like a ghost for the first hour of the day, but she most definitely did not get burnt or damaged by the almost fluoro Floridian sun!!), but here in Australia, SPF 50 is the highest currently available.

There are 2 types of sunscreen : Physical and Chemical. Physical sunscreen (zinc oxide and/or titanium dioxide) acts as a protective barrier between you and the sun, and stops the UVA rays from penetrating the skin. Its starts to work it's magic immediately. Chemical sunscreen absorbs the UVA rays before they hit your skin. It must be applied at least 20 minute prior to sun exposure.
{UVA rays are the nasties that penetrate deep down into your skin. UVB rays are what burns your skin, and what causes people to believe that the sun 'does not damage them', as different skins are effected differently by UVB rays}.

Brooke Walker and Francie Longo

Now there are many different arguments that we could look at for which is the best protector : physical or chemical, but that is a post I will save for another day. As long as you are wearing one or the other (or even better  - both!) that will put a smile on my face.

Down to the fun stuff now after that serious little chat. The actual products! Since I was 14, I have never gone a day with out wearing sunscreen on my face. This is thanks to my mum drilling it into me, as well as my own personal interest in makeup and beauty products from a young age.

For the past 5 or so years, I have been using this sunscreen from Mecca Cosmetica. It glides onto my skin so smoothly, and feels more like a moisturiser or primer, rather than a sunscreen. This is a chemical sunscreen.

mecca to save face, $45

If I am on a beach holiday, or know that I will be in the sun a lot on one particular day, then I mix it up and combine my routine with one of the original physical sunscreens, Invisible Zinc.  Invisible Zinc is available almost anywhere (Coles to David Jones) and starts at $14.95. Personally, I like the Tinted Daywear, as I find it the most suited to wear on the face. It does give you a 'dewy' look, but if you are not into that, you can simply set it with a mineral powder (with added SPF protection...hoorah!)

tinted daywear by invisible zinc

Although I do love my Mecca sunscreen, it's with a heavy heart, I am looking to swap to a physical sunscreen, as they provide better protection against pigmentation and long term skin damage. A physical sunscreen is not for everyone, as it really feels like you are 'wearing sunscreen', so for those that don't want to deal with that, Mecca To Save Face is the product for you.

These two products are on my radar, and I'm currently testing both of them, so I will report back with my findings in a few weeks.

Aspect Hydra Shield, is available at select salons, and most will be happy to give you a small sample if you are an existing client.

aspect hydra shield
This Becca sunscreen also comes in a tinted version which I am looking forward to trying. Isn't the packaging colour just darling?

becca mineral face & body, $39

And there you have it, my 2 cents worth on sun protection. I hope you all got something out of it and will lovingly apply your sunscreen tomorrow morning!!

Happy product testing lovelies,

B xxx (aka the sunscreen nazi)

disclaimer : if you are a friend that has used one of those excuses, I still love you. You are just lucky I didn't use names xxx

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