Sunscreen powder is often recommended as a good choice to boost your protection throughout the day. If you wear makeup, there is no way you can repeat your face every two hours just to be refreshed with a liquid sunscreen, so SPF powder is really the only practical choice. But according to cosmetic chemist Michelle Wong, PhD, these products do not provide as much protection as you might think. The reason? The amount of powder you will need to apply to actually get the amount of SPF indicated on the bottle is impossible to apply.
“You need to cover your skin with enough particles or molecules that absorb UV radiation, otherwise too much UV radiation can pass through the gaps in your skin and cause damage,” says Dr. Wong. “The SPF of a product is controlled using 2 milligrams per square centimeter and applied very evenly to the skin. If you apply less, you generally end up with lower protection and it is a linear relationship – for example, if you apply half, you end up with half SPF. powder does not stick very well to the skin, so it is very difficult to apply the right amount. “
In other words, if you apply a powder with SPF 30 protection, at best, you get SPF 15 protection. But realistically, it is probably even less than that.
“SIbecause the skin is uneven, if you apply less than half the recommended amount, you usually end up with much less protection, as it will be patched and end up with a lot of coverage.hills on your skin, “says Dr. Wong. “This is a big problem with powder, as it tends to spread more unevenly than other forms of products such as lotions and sprays.”
Currently, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not recognize powdered SPFs as an approved form of protection. Instead, the body recommends sunscreen in forms such as creams, sticks, butters and gels. “The upcoming FDA monograph excludes sunscreen powder, even though Colorescience has submitted data on their sunscreen powder to the FDA for testing,” said Dr. Wong.
Elizabeth Kream, MD, a dermatologist and incoming partner at the Laser and Skin Surgery Center in New York, says sunscreen powder should not be your only form of protection. Start your routine with a liquid sunscreen and do your best to make a sunscreen powder every two hours (why, yes – a touch of powder is better than not doing it at all).
“With powders, one downside is that it’s difficult to quantify exactly how much you applied,” says Dr. Kream. “Aim for two passes, moving the brush in small circles for a total of about 60 seconds – make sure the powder really diffuses out of the container and into the bristles of the brush. I like to shake the brush before applying it to make sure.”
Also, remember that SPF is not the only form of sun protection. “Looking for shade, wearing a hat or sunglasses, limiting exposure during peak hours in the sun and wearing layers,” is also helpful, says Dr. Kream. Be sure to follow these tips regularly, but especially on days when sunscreen powder is your only form of SPF re-application.
Dr. Kream recommends choosing a sunscreen powder with a higher protection index. You still will not get the full SPF on the label, but getting a SPF 50 is much better than getting a SPF 30.
Buy the best SPF 50 sunscreen powder below
Isdin Mineral Brush Powder SPF 50 – $ 55.00
This Isdin sunscreen powder provides UVA, UVB and blue light protection with titanium dioxide, zinc oxide and iron oxides. It also contains mica to add a subtle glow to the skin.
Colorsience Sunforgettable Powder – $ 69.00
This is Dr.’s favorite SPF powder. Kream. Uses zinc oxide and titanium dioxide to provide protection, plus iron oxides for protection from blue light and hyaluronic acid powder for additional hydration. Available in four shades.
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