Sunscreen in Real Time

Now that  sun filled days are here, I am wondering  how much sunscreen do I really need to use.  Many expert recommend one tablespoon for the face and  a total of two tablespoons for  both face and body.   To test  it out, I  measured out one tablespoon  of sunblock and dumped it on a small plate.  Then I went to work, dabbing it  on my checks, nose, and chin. I avoided my bang covered forehead.   At first, things went fine.  My skin seemed very happy  with the  extra moisture  of the sunscreen.  But as I applied more and more, it started to pile up on the surface until it looked like frosting — or clown make-up.

One of my biggest concerns when using sunscreen has been wearing make-up over it.  Not infrequetly, foundation, powder or blush would turn dark and orangy when applied over sunscreen treated skin.  Looking at this photo, I can’t imagine where I would actually put the make-up.  Clearly this one tablespoon idea is not something that too many experts  have personally  tried out. 

Other experts  are suggesting a teaspoon or nickel size  blob of sunblack for the face. Moving on, I measured out one teaspoon of sunscreen and started  to put it on my face.  Starting near my eyes, I applied the cream to the sides of my nose and smoothed it over my chin and cheeks– and there it  sat.  And sat.  Rather than looking like frosting, it was more like mime make-up–  a hard look to  carry off.  I decided to see how long it would take to absorb.  After about 30 minutes, I still  looked a bit shiny but no longer like a mime wanna be.  I tissued off the excess and brushed on some mineral make-up.   It turned a bit darker,  but not something anyone else would notice. 

Maybe I’ve got a smaller than average face or my skin is not dry enough to absorb that much product, but one tablespoon for the face is ridonkulous.  One teaspoon  seems reasonable, if I  allow 30 minutes for absorption.  How much sunscreen do you use on your face?  Any appliction tips?  I’ve worked hard  to erase years of  sun aging and  I want to keep those gains.  Any  suggestions?

6 thoughts on “Sunscreen in Real Time

  1. I think it really depends on the sunscreen you use. In winter I just use Clinique’s Super City Block – tinted 30SPF by itself. In summer (Australia, so the sun is harsh) I use another sunscreen under it (with the City Block operating as a light foundation) but I can’t use the zinc ones because they feel horrible and the tinted ones make me look bright orange …

  2. I am at the point where I don’t care if I look white. I have been using Neutrogena Dry Touch SPF 85 (which is probably a lot of bunk). It blends in quite well. But if I really want to protect, I use zinc based Water Babies by Coppertone 50 SPF (I don’t know if the current Water Babies formula contains zinc but the one I bought last year was 15% zinc, which is a pretty good amount). I don’t completely trust sunscreens and sunblocks anymore. The only way to avoid sun damage is to avoid the sun, especially between the hours of 10AM and 4PM. Back in late April before the trees were in bloom, i was out walking on a sunny day AND had put sunscreen (SPF 85) on my upper chest – it still got pink!

    Now I always cover my arms, chest and neck, if possible, and wear a broad brimmed hat. This won’t make my skin pale since I sported a tan during the summer for much of my life, but it will hopefully prevent further damage….

    I have heard that Anthelios is a good sunscreen (European make) but it is quite expensive. I tried samples of their SPF60 at CVS and it seemed pretty good and blended in well.

    • Wow 15% zinc! THat’s a great find. THanks so much the info. Its exactly the kind of product I am looking for. I have also bought clothing infused with sunscreen and I am curious to see if they deliver. I will wear them for a picnic and see if they deliver as promised.

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