You Need SPF All Year Round

Sun protection is a must – all year, at all times. Frankly, I fall short of applying sometimes when I’m in short sleeves, but you better believe my face is covered. I am also getting better about neck and décolletage.

I have a few favorite brands (La Roche Posay takes the #1 and #2 spots), and I actually DO take this topic quite seriously. It isn’t just the ageless and ghostly pallor I’m after, taking care to protect our skin during sun exposure affects our health. BIG time.  

But to add a little fun to the conversation… I came across this photo and couldn’t help but take to the sassy branding. Red, black, and g o t h all over – well played, marketers.

Brilliantly, wonderfully, well played…

Multi-Tasking Hydrating Mists

I’ve stocked up on a ton of facial mists myself over the years, usually finding them at Asian markets, Asian brands on eBay, or in New-York-City style pharmacies (think Evian, Avene, La Roche Posay…now FAR more accessible!)

Many mists these days, though, aren’t just for cooling, refreshing, or soothing.  Nowadays they are designed as much to protect you from the elements as they are for instant, feeling great at the time.

Garnier’s Moisture Bomb Multi Protection Hydrating Mist (that’s a mouthful!) protects the skin from UV pollution and oxidation, boasts an SPF of 30, and hydrates with a “lighter than air” feel – a nice addition to refreshing, don’t you think?  It isn’t here in the USA as far as I can tell…but you can find it in the UK at Boots, for one.  For a review, you can check out ReallyRee’s here.

For another multi-tasking variation on mists,Wander’s Glow Getter Mist promises non-comedogenic moisturizing, antibacterial soothing and healing, plus a radiant , dullness-busting, dewiness.  Yep, this rose-scented spray actually serves as a bit of a highlighter, how about that?  So not only do you feel refreshed, but you most certainly look it (provided you are wanting that all-over-glow it provides – with or without makeup underneath. Oilier skin types may not, but I haven’t seen too many reviews just yet to determine that!) 

wanderbeauty.com

wanderbeauty.com

Last but definitely not least (since the brand has quite a cult following already for its masks!) is GlamGlow’s Glowsetter setting spray.  Per Sephora’s description: “This instant makeup finisher is infused with TEAOXI® complex (green tea, white tea, and red tea) paired with charged waters and caffeine to hydrate, energize, and smooth in a weightless fine mist. Inspired by Hollywood skin—always sexy, never shiny—this setting spray is the perfect makeup companion, finishing your look with a soft, cloud-like mist so your glow goes everywhere with you, no matter what.” Fan of the brand?  Eager to try it?

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sephora.com

Etude House Sun Blind UV Cushion

So Cushions have become a major thing in the US – maybe not quite as massive as the impact from their originating countries, but they’ve definitely taken off in the last couple of years.  The formulations cover the gamut of beauty and color cosmetics, to skincare, so you can bet at least a few of your favorite products can be found in this format.

Take UV protection for example… How adorable is this Etude House Sun Blind Cushion? It’s nod-to-nautical stripes and bright white base make the compact itself something you wouldn’t mind pulling out.  What I love is that this precious little package packs an SPF 50+ / PA +++ punch.

In case you aren’t sure of the designations (let me say first, I am not a dermatologist, but this may help at least explain the terminology!):

  • SPF refers to the protection from the sun’s UVB rays
  • The PA rating refers to the UVA protection level
  • UVA = Long wave Ultraviolet A rays. These can penetrate deeply into the dermis (our skin’s thickest layer.) UVA therefore can lead to photo aging – premature wrinkling and aging of your skin – as well as immune system suppression.  No thanks!
  • UVB = Short Wave Ultraviolet B rays. These can burn the surface of the skin (superficial), potentially contributing to conditions like skin cancer

The PA is not regulated by the FDA, and is a Japanese and Korean designation.  These days the best way to be sure you have both covered is a “broad spectrum” or “full spectrum” on the label.  Still, it does indicate that the product offers at least some UVA protection – PA +++ is the highest grade of UVA protection available, with a Persistent Pigment Darkening (PPD) rating of more than 8.)

 

In any case, the Etude House packaging makes taking care of your skin – in Summer or any other season – a cinch.  It’s incredibly easy to tote around, making for quick and easy reapplication.  With skincare, ease of use always helps makes applying the proper amount more a habit, and less of a chore. NICE.

Sweatproof Minerals Designed By (And For) Athletes

The concept behind this Company is one near and dear to my athletic, but womanly, heart – products designed for athletes that will stay on, stay true (in color), and don’t cause havoc for your skin.  

But…the reviews for this newbie – Sweat Cosmetics – range from terrible, to “not worth it,” to five-star.  It’s a little tricky to tell where this really will average out, but overall the reaction hasn’t been stellar – hopefully that will change (I’m rooting for you, ladies!)  

The line is made up of just four products so far – the Translucent Mineral Powder ,  Mineral Foundation with SPF 30, Mineral Illuminator with SPF 30, and the Mineral Bronzer with SPF 30.  I have seen a lot of water-resistant, longer wearing products in the last year or two, which is definitely a-ok by me – I need products that live up to their claims of staying power without making my skin freak out.  But…not all of the offerings out there manage to be a home run in both categories…  Their twist brush also makes life a lot easier, another plus for women on the go.

sweatcosmetics.com/

sweatcosmetics.com/

I love that this was created by five Olympic and pro athletes though – they GET the struggle active women face! 🙂 For many years I wanted my own product line too (not that I was noteworthy as a public sports figure, but I sure as heck have knowledge and experience!)  I was managing the Fragrance section of the Cosmetic Department in NYC in a massive department store, so my exposure to the cosmetics arena at the time was daily.  I was frustrated by the lack of products that could lend a more natural feel, last through rigorous training, and long days.  I’m seeing more of it but I still have to rely on random pieces from specific brands – I can’t get all products from the same brand because it doesn’t really exist.  

So overall, the idea is wonderful – I’m just not sure these particular formulas have caught on as yet, or that they are delivering quite as they need to…but I really hope that they do, and that more women try them out.  I’m reluctant to switch what I use currently because my formula (my collection of go-to products) really works for me.  I also have my wedding coming up in October and trying to avoid any potential skin woes – product-induced clogged pores, breakouts, acne, whatever! – beforehand!

The reason I personally get it?  HERE!

 

 

 

Body Shop Instaglow CC

There really isn’t any let up on the “glow”-bestowing products of late, what with the surge of strobing, highlighting and contouring.  

I’m not complaining, for sure – anything that boosts the “wakefulness” factor is a whole-heartedly embraced (rest assured!)

Maybe long work hours (or slow-poke coworkers!) are leaving your drained.  Maybe it’s a heavy, physically demanding training load during the week that’s left you exhausted.  Or perhaps it’s your newborn, or the obnoxiously loud neighbors next door… Whatever is robbing you of your precious shuteye might also be guilty of stealing the ever-coveted, fully-recharged radiance you get when you actually DO sleep…and stay stress-free.  

Since the latter two conditions are sometimes tough to come by, the plethora of products out there that help us achieve a rested look are definitely appreciated.

The newest on the scene are The Body Shop’s Instaglow CC Creams (hit stores on May 17th overseas – not sure about USA as yet.)  

The Body Shop Instagram

The Body Shop Instagram

Designed to even skin tone, temper shine, minimize pores, soothe (with Aloe Vera), moisturize (with Marula Oil, for a purported 24 hours) AND illuminate, these little guys pack quite a punch.  They also happen to boast an SPF of 20PA+++ (future signs of aging can take a hike, thanks.)  

The shades include:

  • Bright Glow – Light skin, white pigment with purple pearl
  • Peachy Glow – Light to medium skin (might be nice for circles?)
  • Warm Glow – Dark skin, bronzed brown with golden pearl

ReallyRee did a great review and shared some nice swatches, so definitely check it out – what I like is that there doesn’t *seem* to be perceptible shimmer…  Glow sans glitter is the way I like to go, personally!

These aren’t meant to be full coverage by any stretch…but alone, or paired with other color cosmetics, these definitely appear to give you a boost…and who doesn’t love THAT idea?!  Not too many Body Shops near me but I will absolutely drop in and check them out when I come across one!  

 

L’Oreal Paris UV City Mist

So I’ve rambled on about sun protection before – it’s HUGELY important.  We generally don’t apply enough, nor as frequently as we should – I do wear SPF 30 on my face every day, but then there are hands, necks, ears, and other exposed areas that are forgotten about by most of us! 

With that said, the easier to use, the better – I love mists for that reason, so this one – UV Perfect Aqua Essence City Mist SPF 50 – caught my eye.  L’Oreal has an incredible R&D team and definitely spends on getting products right – so they are a name I trust when it comes to skincare (including suncare.)  

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(Not sure of photo attribution – if you know, please share! 🙂

This particular product is designed to be ultra light, refreshing, and long-lasting (it says 12 hour UV protection but that feels like a generous statistic.)  The details, per L’Oreal, include:

  • 3 seconds spray-on
  • Can be applied over makeup
  • Sweatproof
  • Non-sticky
  • Non-greasy
  • Hydrates skin 

I haven’t seen this in the States as yet, but it appears you can get it in the UK already!

Vitamin D

I love stormy, rainy days…and I most definitely don’t deliberately sunbathe… But there’s nothing more wonderful than being outside on a beautiful day (with your sunscreen, of course! – I use Cetaphil 35 SPF every day) to catch a little Vitamin D.

Fortunately for me…a “beautiful day” includes just about all weather conditions – snow storm, pouring rain, Spring morning, Autumn afternoon…it’s all DIVINE to me.  ❤

Really the only thing better than being outside, surrounded by the sounds of Life, is sharing it with someone I love.  

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It doesn’t matter if we sit together quietly, whether we laugh until our stomachs hurt…  Whether we are deep in conversation, or watching other park-goers playing sports as we sip our second coffee.  That time to just BE and enjoy the blessings of health, and warming sun, is a gift.

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I know a lot of people who say they are “too busy”…but I’ll tell you, those are the people who need it most.  If you don’t make time to smell the roses…or get a regular dose of mood-boosting Vitamin D…you may find yourself not only missing a lot, but feeling lethargic and downtrodden on top of it!

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High-tail it outside and you may just find you have a brighter outlook. 🙂