If you make just one resolution this year, make it this: I will wear sunscreen every day.
Yes, even in winter. Remember when we used to pack away the sunblock with the shorts and swimsuits and then look at it in June and wonder if it was still good? Not any more. The sun accounts for 80% of your skin’s ageing, adding years to your looks. Intrinsic ageing is just a reality of life, but extrinsic ageing is something we have some control over and can slow down. Just remember, it’s much easier to prevent sun damage than repair it. So bundle up in January, and don’t forget your sunglasses and your sunscreen
It doesn’t even have to be sunny to incur skin damage and increase the risk of skin cancer.
Sometimes cloud cover blocks some UV from the sun and lowers UV exposure, while some types of clouds can reflect UV and can increase UV exposure. What is important to know is that UV rays can get through, even on a cloudy day.
~ American Cancer Society
Sunscreen has come a long way with highly effective, sophisticated, and elegant formulations that will not leave your face sticky, smelly, shiny, or white. There really is no excuse not to use it anymore. Cosmetic companies have listened to consumer demand, making sun products that play well with makeup and don’t compromise the skin either. Sunscreen and retinols are our best, scientifically proven, anti-ageing weapons.
But don’t consider the sunscreen in your makeup as adequate sun protection—it’s not. It’s a great bit of added protection but you simply would never apply the quantity of makeup necessary to achieve the SPF protection listed, and these are often too low anyway (SPF 30 is the recommended minimum). What you need is a designated daily sunscreen for your face (and elsewhere) that you like and will use. I consider sunscreen as the last step of my skincare routine: Cleanse, Moisturise; Sunscreen; Makeup.
I’m always on the lookout for new sunscreens and was very curious about Altruist Dermatologist Sunscreen, developed by Dr. Andrew Birnie, a British Consultant Dermatologist and skin cancer surgeon. Made in Germany and created in partnership with some of the best formulation scientists in Europe, Altruist’s goal was to make a high quality product at a price that made it accessible to everyone.
I’ve been using the SPF 50 cream lotion for a few months and I love it. In fact I think it’s one of the best sunscreens out there. Unfortunately, it is not sold in the United States due to current FDA regulations, nor is available in Canada. So when I reached out, Altruist kindly sent me two tubes to try.
- Combination chemical & mineral sunscreen
- Provides the best broad spectrum UVA and UVB protection on the market.
- Broad range of photo stable UV filters, including the most advanced filter Tinosorb A2B
- Very simple formula with panthenol and glycerine as humectants
- Photostable (unchanged by the influence of light)
- Fragrance-, paraben-, and alcoho-l free
- Suitable for all skin types including sensitive and acne prone. Great for children
- For face and body
- Water resistant
- The company donates a portion of each sunscreen sale to the charity Under the Same Sun:, supporting children with albinism in Africa
- It feels lovely on the skin, more akin to a cosmetic face cream than a sunscreen
- Easy to apply and reapply. Light-weight, non-greasy.
- Easily absorbed, non-sticky. No residue
Dries down to a slightly glossy but not greasy finish (thankfully not matte either). Oily skin types might want to add a touch of powder
Stings my eyes. Not immediately, but after I have it on for awhile, it seems to migrate into my eyes and I have to wash it off.
Since my blond/fair-skinned sister-in-law, an avid sun-bather in her youth, contracted eye lid cancer (I assure you, the details are NOT pleasant), I have been meticulous about applying sunblock around my eyes, including the lids. Unfortunately, I cannot use the Altruist product there so I am looking at eye-specific sunscreens such as the Total Eye 3-in-1 Renewal Therapy SPF 35 . However, the Colorscience online site does not ship to Canada and the product is very pricey. I shall keep you posted.
Kudos to Dr. Birnie and his Altruist team for both the product and the concept. Well done.
Altruism is the principle and moral practice of concern for happiness of other human beings and/or animals, resulting in a quality of life both material and spiritual.
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