Friday, March 13, 2015

Does SPF in Makeup Actually Work?!

Post Contains Affiliated Link

Click here to read my original post about the harmful rays of the sun.  

Ah, Spring is in the air which means lighter clothes, warmer weather and more sun! However for many, the sun factor can be a serious problem if you are not properly protection your skin from the harmful UVA/UVB rays.  Nonetheless, many rely on their makeup to offer them SPF protection which is actually a big no no.  The rays of the sun are actually very harmful to your skin and body. Regardless whether you want to accept this fact or not, but those who sunbath without SPF protection are more prone to skin cancer, uneven skin tones, hyperpigmentation, dark spots, liver spots, wrinkles, saggy skin and so on.   

I love to wear makeup!  I actually have two full drawers of it! I know its insane! But no more insane then probably your average collector of everyday things.  Nonetheless, I admit I have a lot.  Yet with that being said, I am very picky about the makeup I buy and only buy quality.  I don't care if it comes for the drugstore or Chanel.  If it can't offer me the quality I need, then I won't even spend my time looking at it.  However with all that being said, makeup means nothing if you have bad skin.  While makeup can help to hide imperfections, it can't fix them.  Skincare above all when it comes to cosmetics is the number one most important thing to me.  I will sooner not buy that Tom Ford shade of lipstick if I realize that my Paula's Choice BHA is running out.  I actually keep backups of my Paula's Choice skincare products because the thought of having to use something else or running out stirs my heart in a not so happy way.

In the last few years, makeup companies have started to become more diligent in offering SPF in their products due to the harmful UVA/UVB rays that come from the sun.  Now-a-days its hard to find a foundation without SPF in it.  Many individuals who wear either liquid or powder foundation have come to rely solely on their cosmetics to offer them SPF protection.  However this is a massive mistake.  While a makeup product can claim that it has SPF in it, unless you are aware on how to apply this product in order to receive the full SPF protection it claims, you are actually not only being mislead but not been protected from the sun.

Why SPF in Makeup Doesn't Work!

According to Dermatologist Leslie Baumann, MD and Cosmetic Dermatologist Dr Sam Bunting, Makeup does not provide enough coverage. You need seven times the normal amount of liquid foundation and 14 times the normal amount of powder foundation to get the sun protection factor on the label re-applied every two hours. So in order words, in order to get the actual protection that a foundation bottle claims it has, you would have to apply it every two hours, six times over for liquid foundation.  For powder foundation the number doubles.  You would need to apply it 14-16 times over and again every two hours.  By a show of hands, who actually applies their foundation in this way?! Anyone? Anyone? Yeah, I didn't think so. Cosmetics companies fall short of offering actual SPF protection is their products despite their SPF factory claim.  In order to properly come up with the amount of foundation one needs in order to be offered the SPF protection that is stated on the bottle, you would have to do the math to get your answer.  Scientists have to test liquid and facial powders foundations in order to determine SPF ratings as mandated by law under the FDA in the USA.  

The average foundation offers an SPF of 25.  The average human face size is about 400cm2-600cm2 give or take as each face size and shape is different.  So for the sake of argument, lets go ahead and assume that 2mg of product will be used per cm2 of skin.  2mg is about the size of a Canadian $1 or $2 dollar coin.  In US its about the size of an American Dollar coin.  So that means that an average person would need to apply 2mg of liquid foundation per every cm2 of skin on their face in order to cover 400cm2-600cm2 of their whole face. 

Remember, the average face size is about 400cm2-600cm2. The average woman only applies 0.3 mg of liquid foundation and about 1.2g of powder foundation.  So based on these numbers (again give or take) you would need about 828 mg of foundation on every application in order to get SPF 25 protection on your face.  For powder foundation you need fourteen times that amount.  So basically your average bottle of foundation (liquid or powder) would last you about a week...if that.  Also, and lets not forget the best part, you still need to apply this crazy amount of foundation every.two.hours! 

In reality, if you are solely relying on the claim that your foundation can offer you SPF protection as good as a normal SPF face cream, then you are not only kidding yourself, but putting your skin in danger to the harmful rays of the sun.  Now you might be asking yourself "if makeup companies know this, then why aren't they tell their customers the truth?"  Let's be honest NO ONE buys foundation thinking "Oh yes this will offer me great protection from the sun."  When you buy any sort of makeup especially foundation your first thought is "does this color match my skin?"  No one buys foundation thinking they will compare it to an actual sun protection product. Consumers aren't that stupid or dense.  We know damn well what we are buying when we are buying makeup.  We are buying makup, plain and simple.  At some point the SPF protection might be a factor in our buying power, but that mostly comes at the end of the list.  Moreover, a lot of people are now looking for SPF free foundation in order to avoid looking like a coke head in flash photography.  Some individuals are walking around with NO sun protection and they know it but sadly don't care. 

Why You Need SPF Broad Spectrum Protection (UVA/UVB)      

The best protection you can give your skin is by wearing a minimum of a separate SPF 30 Broad Spectrum protection which means it protects you from both the UVA/UVB rays of the sun.  Now-a-days you will be hard press to find sunscreen that doesn't offer both because of the law that was recently passed.  Moreover, you should ALWAYS wear sunscreen all throughout the year when stepping outside during the day REGARDLESS of the weather conditions, rain or shine.  Just because its overcast and you can't see the sun, doesn't mean the rays aren't in full force.  Which as an FYI the rays are actually in full force during overcast weathers.  

You should ALWAYS apply sunscreen as the last product in your skincare routine before moving on to your makeup.  Wait at least 5-10 minutes to allow the sunscreen to absorb into your skin before applying your makeup.  By not allowing your sunscreen to adsorb and applying your makeup right after will cause the product to lose its efficacy by being diluted.  After applying my sunscreen I either start getting dress or do my hair in order to give me that 5-10 minute window I need before applying my makeup.  Also, keep your sunscreen in the same place where you keep your skincare products so you make it part of your morning routine.  Remember, "out of sight, out of mind."

Lastly, also look into lip balms that offer SPF 30 protection and up. Remember to wear these OVER your lipstick and lipgloss in order to protection your lips for the sun.  Lip cancer is on the raise lately due to lack of sun protection in this area.

Paula's Choice Resist Anti-Aging Lip Gloss SPF 40 - $15.30  / $18.00 US

Paula's Choice just released a new lip balm with SPF and Broad Spectrum protection in two shades, sheer pink and clear! This is a prefect example of a lip protection that offers SPF 40 with broad spectrum protection!  Very few lips products offer a protection this high let alone SPF in it! You can wear either the clear or sheer pink version over any lipstick or lipgloss without disturbing the color. As with any SPF, make sure to apply this every couple of hours as most lipsticks/lipglosses only last that long before needing to reapply.  Also, if you are going to be eating during this time, remember to reapply right after!

BONUS: If you click on the link above, you will receive $10 off any purchase of $15.00 or more for first time shoppers on Paula's Choice website.  To find this product, just click under "shop" at the top left hand side, then scroll down to the "makeup" section and click on "lips" and this is the first product you will see in that section.  It is truly worth checking out if you are someone like me who cares about protecting their skin all year around!

Well there you have it, my review on makeup products with SPF claims!  Let me know if you are using a separate SPF skincare product and if so which ones!

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  1. Wow, lots of good information. We have several people in my family who have had skin cancer, including my grandpa who died from it so I'll be very diligent about this.

    1. When my friend past away from cancer years back I also became serious about using SPF everyday when I go out. Sorry to hear you have had so many people touched by this horrible disease! :(

  2. Such an enlightening post! I have to admit that when I see the SPF included in the make up, I thought that was an added bonus. And yes I've never really bothered to apply sunscreen protection on my lips too. Thank you for the great tips!

    1. I use to believe the same thing that if it had SPF in my makeup then of course it must be safe. However one day out of curiosity I just googled it and was shocked when I found out all this info! The things the industry doesn't tell us!


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