Prevent Your Early Aging with SPF

Hello! I hope you have a lovely summer so far.

Sun Protection Factor (SPF) is needed all year long but as a beauty blogger I think this is the right time to finally bring this topic into our discussion. Now, you might gain something useful from this article or even disagree but this is what I have researched so far. Because when it comes to SPF, different people say different things, so feel free to share your thoughts in the comment section below.

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Why do we need to use SPF?

The sun consists of 3 ultraviolet (UV) rays which are UVA, UVB, and UVC. UVA can cause wrinkles and age spots, UVB is the primary cause of sunburn; both can lead to skin cancer. UVC does not penetrate into the earth atmosphere. SPF is not an added benefit, it is a very crucial precautionary step to lessen majority of skin problem that might happen in the future.

Why do we prefer to use separate SPF?

While anything with SPF is basically the same, a moisturizer containing SPF invariably only protects from UVB, so you are still exposed to wrinkles due to collagen break. Also, you need to apply a generous amount in order for the SPF to be effective. With moisturizer, you only need in average of a pea-sized amount to cover the whole face, plus it is less likely to be rub-resistant or water-resistant. A separate SPF step is actually a good substitution for a face primer to create a smooth canvas before putting on make-up.

What is the right amount of SPF to be used?

Liberal application is about a quarter-sized amount of cream texture sunscreen for the whole face and a little less for liquid/fluid lotion. In terms of how high SPF should be used, we recommend SPF 15 or higher. This does not mean if you double the amount of SPF to (for example) 30 you will double the protection. SPF 15 blocks 93 percent of radiation, SPF 30 blocks nearly 97 percent, SPF 50 blocks 98 percent, and SPF 100 blocks 99 percent.

How do we use SPF?

Sunscreen is the last step of your skincare routine. Wait until it absorbs completely (time depends on each product) because the SPF in the sunscreen can be diluted with anything you put on afterwards unless you let it sink properly. Ideally, you need to re-apply every two hours or so, but we never do that. We make our own justification that as long as we are not in contact with water, heavily sweating, or exposed to direct sunlight for most of the times; then once in the morning before make-up is enough. The other alternative is to re-apply your powder that contains SPF. Like I said before, SPF in anything is still act as SPF.

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These are three sunscreens I like the most and trust me they are not like anything your mother put on you when you were a little kid. 
sunscreen trio

St. Tropez SPF 50 Face with Tan Enhancer EUR 16.88

St.Tropez is known for its tanning product and this sunscreen is no difference. It is formulated with Melanobronze and what it does is stimulate the melanin production to enhance the natural tan. Very innovative, I might say. It comes in a 50 ml tube and it is quite fragranced but nothing that will give me a headache. This sunscreen has a moisturizing element as it is infused with antioxidant rich vitamin E and raspberry seed oils for nourishment. In my opinion, if you have an oily skin, this sunscreen alone is enough to double up as your moisturizer. However, it does not say that this is a waterproof sunscreen which I assume it wears off when you are sweating or in contact with water. Personally, I only ever applied this once in the morning and so far I didn’t experience sunburn on my face.

It can be quite tacky when first applied but goes on smoothly after a few minutes. It does not leave a white cast  nor the sticky feeling throughout the day. I started using this product around winter time until the beginning of spring, but to be quite honest I didn’t think that my body’s natural melanin was enhanced. But then again, this product is not a fake tan lotion where the result is obvious. I might have been paler in the winter if wasn’t for this product. Price wise, I think this product is comparable to the drugstore sunscreen with the quality of a high end brand.

Dior BRONZE Beautifying Protective Suncare SPF 50 EUR 29.38

I wasn’t intended to buy this product as this is the most expensive sunscreen that I have ever tried. But with summer sale last year I decided to try this baby out. It comes in a shiny tube, it feels very luxurious I might add. The Tan-Protect Complex shields the sun damage while tanositol prolongs tan. Like any decent sunscreen, it protects from UVA and UVB rays but what makes it special is that it also work against free radical element. This product can double up as a moisturizer for combination to oily skin type. Another plus point of this product is that while it is a great substitution for face primer to create a smooth canvas before make-up application, it has subtle light-reflecting pearlescent particles that will make your complexion more radiant but not necessarily looking like a disco ball.

Like St.Tropez, it can be quite tacky when first applied but creates a perfect canvas to put make-up on. It does not leave a white cast after the application or during the day. It has a lovely smell in my opinion and the overall experience using this product is very satisfying. It can be double up as a moisturizer with all good ingredient in this product and although this is not a water resistant sunscreen, I feel like it gives maximum protection for a moderate summer season like here in the Netherlands. However, you can find some sunscreen with cheaper price with similar benefit. If you love Dior in general and don’t mind to spend some extra cash on this product then this is the perfect sunscreen for you. Highly recommended.

Shiseido Expert Sun Aging Protection Lotion Plus for Face SPF 50 EUR 44.38

This is straight up the most expensive of the three choices, however it contains 100 ml of product so actually it is still reasonable for what you get considering it’s a Shiseido. I am trying to bring you a fair review but I have to admit that when it comes to sunscreen, Asian brand is usually the ones I go first. I heard mixed reviews about this product but i decided to give it a try. Just like the other Shiseido sun protection line, it comes in an opaque blue bottle and yellow cap. It’s a very water-resistant, fragrance-free (or so I have thought based on my sense of smell)  sunscreen that is light and non-sticky. I have to shake before use and the product itself is very liquidy so you might want to be very careful when pouring it out. Unlike the other two products mentioned, this one does not have any moisturizing ingredient in it therefore I always use a separate moisturizer beforehand.

When it first applied, it does not feel tacky at all, actually it absorbs fast to the point where I could feel like wearing my make-up straight away. However, it leaves white cast horribly! My face and neck (where I apply this product) looks a lot lighter than the rest of my body. Fortunately, my fear of looking like a ghost is not coming true. The color matches my skin tone as soon as it absorbs completely and it stays that way for the rest of the day. But then again I have a medium skin tone with yellow undertone so I cannot speak for those with darker complexion on whether the white cast will adjust or turns ashy. My recommendation with this tricky product is to ask for a tester first because you don’t want to spend 40+ Euro and stuck with 100 ml product that you end up hating. My personal opinion, I love it 🙂

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It is better safe than sorry as to prevent is easier than to cure what already been damaged. And we all agree that aging is a natural and beautiful thing that we should embrace. Aging gracefully, that is.

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