I know nothing about sunscreen.
In fact, I don't ever remember wearing sunscreen as a kid. As a teenager I would spend hours in the sun trying to get as dark as possible while rubbing Hawaiian Tropic Dark Tanning Oil all over my body. I loved the sun and I loved a gorgeous tan!
So what changed? After 15 years of hearing nothing except how bad the sun was and how it was going to start wreaking havoc on my skin, it finally started to sink in. I didn't want my skin to age ten years overnight. I didn't want horrible sun spots all over my face. I certainly did not want to end up with skin cancer. All the fear mongering was working but I just could not find a sunscreen that I was willing to use on a daily basis!
I always hated the way sunscreen felt on my skin - my face in particular. To be honest, at one point I actually believed I was allergic to it! Every time I would use it on my face (for fear of aging and sun spots), my eyes would swell up, start watering and burn like nobody's business. For years, I told myself this was my body's way of telling me that I should just forget about sun protection because clearly, sunscreen was not for me. Another issue I had with sunscreen was the way my skin would break out after using it on a regular basis. I wanted to scream every time I went for a facial and an aesthetician would force me to purchase yet another tube of sunblock. I can tell you with all honesty that sunscreen was the LAST thing my skin needed. My eyes had finally healed from the last application and my skin had cleared up from the last breakout and now they wanted me to use it again?! Little did I know (as I do now) that I was not allergic to the sunscreen, but most likely to the synthetic fragrance used in most store-bought brands.
I used to dread having to apply sunscreen during the summer months. Even the hypo-allergenic and dermatologist-approved brands were terrible for me. Since I am a natural sun-lover and enjoy biking, swimming, hiking and running, this was obviously a matter that stressed me out on the regular. I needed protection for my face, chest and arms (especially), but I was not willing to risk my complexion (or eyesight) for it.
A Sunscreen Miracle.
After years of searching for a sunscreen that didn't make me want to rip my eyeballs out, I finally found something that worked. I know I always talk about how amazing Beautycounter products are and for that I will not apologize. They are just SO good! The Protect All-Over Sunscreen SPF 30 was a game changer for me - literally. Non-greasy, ultra-hydrating and as light as any perfect body lotion you could imagine. Warning - a little goes a long way! Sure these bottles may not be cheap, but they are so spreadable and you only need the smallest amount because it rubs in so beautifully! My eyes don't burn because there is no fragrance and only the most gentle and safest ingredients are used to create it.
Another one of my favourites is the Protect Stick (Face) SPF 30. It is the perfect, non-greasy little stick that stays in my purse all summer long. I use it for my lips, nose, forehead, chest and shoulders. It's the smallest little thing and fits perfectly in my makeup bag. Let's face it, nobody wants to lug around a giant bottle of sunscreen when you are out for some fun (without the kids). It has definitely been a summer lifesaver for my face on a number of outings with my husband and friends.
Lastly - I LOVE the Protect Stick SPF 30 Sunscreen (Body) for my kids. Why? Because my kids are messy. They squirt lotion everywhere, get it in their eyes, their hair and all over their clothes. They end up sticky and gross and I would prefer that they stay clean. On the many days they are at school or camp and I am not there to monitor their sunscreen application, I am happy knowing my kids have a simple SPF Body Stick to use. That said, I always apply the All-Over Lotion on them in the morning before they leave for the day however, the Protect Stick (Body) is a PERFECT way for kids to re-apply throughout the day! It is a GAME CHANGER for any helicopter Mom!
Like I said, I know nothing about sunscreen. I am not a scientist. I am not a dermatologist and I am not an expert in sun safety. I simply know what works for me and what I feel comfortable recommending to others. We all know the harmful effects of UV rays and I am relieved to have found sunscreen products that work for me (and my life). If any of my experiences resonate with you, that's great! If not, all good. That said, I am SO looking forward to the summer and spending time in the sun while ensuring my skin stays protected (and pretty).