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The Truth About Makeup and SPF

by kelly / October, 12 2016 01:30

makeup, foundation, lipsticks and makeup brushes

This week we are getting to the bottom of the age-old debate: “Is makeup with SPF enough?” with a quick and easy guide for all your questions around this subject. Now you’ll always know the truth.

QuestionThe TruthWhy?
Is SPF in my makeup enough? No it’s not enough Makeup does not provide enough coverage. According to dermatologist Dr. Leslie Baumann:

“You need seven times the normal amount of foundation and 14 times the normal amount of powder to get the sun protection factor on the label. No one does this.”

Furthermore about one teaspoon applied evenly across the face and neck is needed to get full SPF protection. Most people use much less and don’t often spread makeup evenly across the face.

Finally most people don’t use makeup on their neck, décolletage and hands, which are also often exposed and need sun protection.

Your first line of defense against sun damage should be a broad spectrum SPF or sunscreen product.
Do I need to reapply sunscreen every two hours if I’m wearing makeup? Yes you need to reapply Sunscreen really lasts for only two hours. If you want to prevent skin aging and damage you need to reapply as the sun causes 90% of skin aging.

I know it can be hard to deal with applying sunblock again over makeup. One recommendation is to apply sunscreen and then use a translucent powder on top of the newly applied sunscreen to reduce shine and give your makeup a second wind.
Using multiple SPF products gives me greater protection? No it does not SPF is not an equation as explained by dermatologist Dr. Mona Gohara:

"You can't use an SPF 15 primer and an SPF 20 foundation and get SPF 30 coverage. Your sun protection is only as strong as your highest SPF, which in this case would be 20."

SPF is also only a measure of protection against UVB rays. UVA rays also cause damage to the skin and play a large part in skin aging and the development of wrinkles.

To ensure you are protected from UVA and UVB rays look for a broad spectrum SPF or sunscreen product.
Powder makeup with SPF provides enough protection? No it does not Powder makeup is inconsistent and does not provide full coverage. According to dermatologist Dr. David Colbert:

“Powders are millions of little particles…They can’t form a uniform shield. They’re a physical sunblock in a way, but they let too much light through.”

So there you have it the real facts vs. fiction on makeup and SPF. Feel free to print this handy guide out or share it with friends! Find even more truths in our Ingredient Truths series and facts in our Suncare Smarts posts.

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