Aubrey Houchin, RN Aesthetician
May 27 is National Sunscreen Day, and summer is practically here already! With daylight savings time comes an even greater need to protect your skin. If we have met, you know how big I am on sunscreen. It’s so important!
Of course, we should be wearing sunscreen outdoors, but we should also be wearing sunscreen every day, even indoors, to protect from device screens that emit blue (HEV) light or the UVA (“aging” rays) in fluorescent lights. According to dermatologist Macrene Alexides, an associate professor at Yale University’s School of Medicine and the director and founder of the Dermatology & Laser Surgery Center of New York, “Blue light has high energy and therefore is able to penetrate deep into the skin. I caution my patients when using their devices because screens may inadvertently emit UV light, which is known to cause skin cancer.”
I live and breathe skincare and sunscreen, so I wanted to share some things you should know about sunscreen and sun damage.
- Sunscreen does not cause Vitamin D deficiency.
- Sunscreen is still necessary on cloudy days.
- UVB rays mostly cause sunburn and are filtered by windows.
- UVA rays mostly cause wrinkles, sagging and aging. They are NOT filtered through windows (think about get driving in the car!) and are found in fluorescent lights everywhere.
- SPF numbers ONLY apply to protection against UVB rays. SPF 30 keeps out 97% of those.
- Physical sunscreens are effective immediately after application
- Chemical sunscreens take about 20 minutes to take effect but require less product for adequate protection. These are a thinner liquid that leaves a matte finish making them ideal for acne-prone or oily skin.
- Physical blocks are safer for the environment than chemical sunscreens and less irritating to sensitive skin.
- Physical sunscreens work because zinc oxide and titanium dioxide form a barrier against the sun’s rays. They work longer in direct sunlight but can rub or wash off easily, so they need to be reapplied more often.
When we began offering another new sunscreen by iS Clinicals, I realized we carry a lot of sunscreens. We have something for everyone, but with all the options we carry, as well as the ones you can buy elsewhere, I know finding the right sunscreen for your skin and lifestyle can be overwhelming.
Here is a review of the sunscreens carry to help you choose what is right for your skin type and sun protection needs:
EXTREME PROTECT® SPF 30 provides protection by combining broad-spectrum UVA/UVB protection with powerful antioxidants to mitigate oxidative solar damage. Featuring micro-fine zinc oxide and micro-encapsulated organic active sunscreens, it is ideal for dry, combination, sensitive or mature skin.
- Provides multi-level broad-spectrum UVA/UVB protection
- Helps protect from the visual effects of environmental aggressors with Extremozyme® technology (antioxidants)
- Hydrates smooths and softens
- Diminishes the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles
- Helps provide an antioxidant-rich protective barrier
Key Ingredients: Zinc Oxide, a physical active sunscreen ingredient; olive leaf extract; a natural antioxidant extract that helps nurture and provide visual support for blemish-prone and compromised skin; Extremozymes®, a proprietary combination of enzymes that are clinically proven to help protect skin from environmental aggressors; and Centella Asiatica, a powerful antioxidant with nourishing properties that helps diminish the appearance of premature aging.
EXTREME PROTECT SPF 40 iS CLINICALS is a multilevel, environmentally protective treatment formula featuring proprietary Extremozyme technology combined with all-physical sunscreen actives, transparent micronized Zinc Oxide and transparent micronized Titanium Dioxide. This antioxidant-rich, broad-spectrum UVA/UVB sunscreen helps support optimal skin health as it moisturizes and protects.
- Botanically based
- Contains all-physical transparent sunscreen actives
- Provides multi-level broad-spectrum UVA/UVB protection
- Protects against environmental damage with Extremozyme technology
- Hydrates smooth and softens
- Provides an antioxidant-rich protective barrier
- Lowers risk of photoaging and skin cancer
- Available in Translucent, PerfecTint Beige, and PerfecTint Bronze
Key ingredients: Titanium Dioxide, a safe, non-irritating, and non-allergenic physical active sunscreen ingredient; Zinc Oxide, a safe, physical active sunscreen ingredient; Vitamin E; a highly efficacious moisturizer and antioxidant that helps protect against the visual effects of photodamage; and Extremozymes®, a proprietary combination of enzymes that are clinically proven to help protect skin from environmental aggressors.
ECLIPSE SPF 50+ is formulated specifically for daily use and extended outdoor activities. It is a unique fusion of scientifically advanced physical sunscreens, transparent titanium dioxide, and micronized zinc oxide, coupled with pure vitamin E. This antioxidant-rich blend provides superior water-resistant, broad-spectrum UVA/UVB protection. The ultra-sheer, lightweight formula absorbs quickly for a non-greasy matte finish. Ideal for combination, acne-prone, or oily skin types, but all skin types will do well with this one.
- Provides all-physical broad-spectrum UVA/UVB protection
- Ultra-sheer, fast-absorbing with a weightless finish
Key ingredients: Zinc Oxide; Vitamin E, a highly efficacious moisturizer and antioxidant that helps protect against the visual effects of photodamage; and Titanium Dioxide, a safe, non-irritating, and non-allergenic physical active sunscreen ingredient.
ZO SMART ZONE SPF 50 is ultra-lightweight and is designed to blend into almost all skin tones leaving your skin bronzed and dewy. J Lo claims it as one of her faves!
- Broad-spectrum UVA/UVB protection
- Provides additional protection against high-energy visible (HEV) light
- Combats redness
- Exclusive 12-hour time-release antioxidant complex guards against the appearance of photodamage.
Key ingredients: Avobenzone 3% provides UVA protection; homosalate 10%, octisalate 5%, and octocrylene 10% provide UVB protection; fractionated melanin shields skin from HEV light; iron oxides and mica are a pressure-release color system for customizable skin tone; tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate provides visual pigmentation inhibition; sunflower seed oil, rosemary leaf extract, disodium uridine phosphate, panthenol triacetate, ethyl linoleate, and tocopherol help provide skin protection and support natural cellular rejuvenation; tocopheryl acetate, ascorbic acid, retinyl palmitate is a 12-hour time-release antioxidant complex fights against free radical damage; petasites japonicus root extract and beta-glucan provide visible anti-redness.
ZO SUNSCREEN+ PRIMER SPF 30 is a dual-action sunscreen with ZOX12® complex that protects against the damaging effects from UVA/UVB and the infrared A-rays and from HEV light. It hydrates and doubles as a makeup primer for a smooth matte finish, diminishing skin imperfections. Good for all skin types.
- Exclusive 12-hour, time-release ZOX12® antioxidant complex guards against photodamage
- Provides daily multi-defense protection from UVA, UVB, and high-energy visible (HEV) light
- Can be used alone or worn under makeup for a more even, long-lasting application
- Helps to smooth the skin and diminish the appearance of fine lines
Key ingredients: Titanium dioxide (1%) provides broad-spectrum UVA/UVB protection; natural melanin; natural photo-protective compounds and free radical quenchers; Vitamin E provides antioxidant properties; silicones prime the skin to provide a soft, silky finish before makeup application.
With so many great sunscreens out there, in our office, and otherwise, my main message to you is to protect your skin both indoors and out!