Does SPF Makeup Provide Enough Sun Protection?

Does SPF Makeup Provide Enough Sun Protection?

With spring just a few short weeks away, it's important to know how to properly protect your skin from UV radiation! More time spent outdoors means more exposure to the sun, so it's a good idea to learn just how much protection you need to adequately combat the effects of sun exposure. We'll be the first to admit that we'll take any chance for multitasking...but one place we won't multitask is with our SPF. Nowadays there are all sorts of foundations, CC creams, skin tints that include some amount of SPF, but it's never actually enough SPF to protect you all day long. Keep reading to learn all the in's and out's of SPF makeup.


What even is SPF makeup?

SPF makeup took the beauty industry by storm, and now most makeup companies offer some kind of SPF in their products. Essentially, SPF makeup is simply sunscreen added to makeup formulas (loose powders, tinted moisturizers, foundations, etc) to help protect skin against UV rays. SPF stands for Sun Protection Factor, and it measures the effectiveness of any sunscreen product against sunburn. The higher the SPF, the more protection against the sun!


Does SPF makeup provide enough protection?

Two steps in one product sounds like a morning routine dream come true! But sadly, it's not quite the case. Sunscreen ratings are based on a standard application of 2mg/cm2 of sunscreen, which means you would need to apply 6-7 times the amount of traditional sunscreen if you're solely relying on SPF makeup. That's a lot of makeup that most of us won't be willing to apply. Also keep in mind that the FDA has very strict guidelines as to what constitutes a sunscreen. So just because your foundation contains sunscreen ingredients does not mean it is considered sunscreen.


What is the proper way of wearing SPF?

No need to write off SPF makeup all together! It's still better than not wearing any sunscreen at all, and it's even better if you couple it with broad spectrum (blocks UVA and UVB) sunscreen before makeup and reapply throughout the day. We suggest starting with your traditional sunscreen first (apply two fingers worth - use your index and pointer fingers - to your face and neck), then add on your favorite SPF makeup product, and lastly reapply sunscreen throughout the day, preferably once every two hours. Have a full face of makeup on? There are face mists and powders which contain SPF that you can apply over your makeup so you don't have to wash your face every 2 hours (no one has time for all that)!


Protecting your face from the sun is one of the most important parts of your beauty routine and it's important to understand the specifics of how sunscreen works. By applying the correct amount of broad spectrum sunscreen and reapplying throughout the day, your risks of premature aging and skin cancer is greatly reduced!




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