The Beauty Desk
The latest beauty news & views, direct from PRIMPED HQ!
Obsessed With Suncare? Read On …
Tue, 7 August 2012 2:01PM
I’m a sunscreen fanatic. Not that this is anything too unusual for a beauty editor. We see so many zillion-times-magnified views of skin cancers and UV-induced wrinkles and pigmentation (often over breakfast; there’s nothing like it to turn you off your mushroom bruschetta) that we can’t help but become a little vampire-like and hide from the sun at every possible turn. Just like English Rose Anna Friel – don’t you love her Downton Abbey-esque hat?
So you can imagine my excitement about the upcoming move to SPF50+ – it’s slated for the end of this year. We haven’t had a briefing yet on the exact rules and regulations (I think it’s all still being finalised, after which companies will be given some time to reformulate and relabel) but this is what I know so far:
- While SPF30+ defends against around 97% of UVB rays, SPF50+ will increase this protection threshold to 98%. Sure it doesn’t sound like much. But keep in mind that sun damage is cumulative. A whole heap of little hits of exposure adds up to, well, a lot. So I’m of a more-the-merrier mind. And anyway, we never apply as much sunscreen as we should, so think of an SPF50+ as giving you a safety margin.
- While there’s yet no official measure for UVA protection (as you probably know, UVA rays are the ‘ageing’ ones, while UVB the ‘burning’ ones), to be able to claim the new SPF50+ stamp, a sunscreen must prove a certain level of UVA-shielding power. They’re also going to be more photo-stable, meaning their UVA protection won’t wither away within minutes of you stepping outside (as is the case with some screens right now – shocking, huh?).
- Sure, some products labeled SPF30+ at the moment are actually already higher than that – perhaps even hitting the 100 mark. However, they may still need to be reformulated so as to provide better UVA protection as well.
- Expect the terms ‘waterproof’ and ‘sweatproof’ to disappear. Apparently there’s no such thing. Talk is that sunscreens will only be able to claim themselves as ‘resistant’ to water for a certain amount of time.
So what to do pre-SPF50+ in order to get the best protection possible? You can always double-dose: apply as usual … then do it again. That’s because we never slather on as much as we should (rule of thumb is a teaspoon full for your face, a tablespoon for each limb).
Oh and make sure your sunscreen is up to date. Did you know that sunscreens have use-by dates? Generally, you should buy a new sunscreen every summer. If your regular face cream has a high-factor, broad-spectrum protection built in, all the better.
Speaking of which, Dermalogica is discontinuing its sun line and pouring all its suncare know-how into three reformulated face moisturisers: Oil Free Matte SPF30, $68.50, Ultra Sensitive Tint SPF30, $57 and Super Sensitive Shield SPF30, $68.50 – call 1800 659 118 for stockist details. So if you’re in the market for a new moisturiser as well as sunscreen, that’s how you can hit two beauty birds with one buy (we never kill our feathered friends here at PRIMPED!).
My final tip: Whatever your SPF number, you still need to re-apply every two hours if you’re outside for an extended time. Which brings us to one of beauty’s trickiest maneouvres: How to apply a layer of sunscreen after you’ve already not only applied your morning dose of screen, but have also followed it up with all sorts of foundations and concealers and highlighters and powders … It’s not such a stress if you have fairly good and clear skin – because you can simply build up a tinted sunscreen throughout the day. For those of us, however, who need a bit more coverage – or who want to look a little more polished – there is now a genius solution: brush-on powder. One of the first off the (sun) block: DermaQuest DermaMinerals On-the-Go Finishing Powder SPF30, $88, 1300 799 709.
It’s a blend of mineral makeup (mineral makeup is, after all, mostly made of zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, two impressive broad-spectrum sunscreen agents) that is housed in a handbag-friendly tube: simply shake a little powder onto the back of your hand, then use the brush at the other end to whisk it all over your face. So clever.
What about you, ladies – what are your top suncare tips?
And are you as excited about the move to SPF50+ as I am?
Posted by: Katrina Lawrence