How much SPF do you wear on your face?

Avatar for leather.and.lace
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-07-2008
How much SPF do you wear on your face?
9
Mon, 06-09-2014 - 9:13am

Hi. I'm a little confused about SPF products and wonder what you are wearing on your face. All of my main/base beauty products have SPF in them, my mositurizer having broad spectrum. I know you can't stack products to add (that is moisturizer with SPF 10 plus BB Cream with SPF 15 would not give you SPF 25) but does combining them at least give you better coverage than single alone? Also, I do add a sunscreen over the foundation if I know I'll be out in full sun, such as at an amusement park. What # do you wear in a sunscreen? I did some research and the higher you go there isn't a huge difference, but then evidence has been showing that for someone fair like myself, the extra (example, I don't know the correct number) 3% SPF 70 gives you over SPF 45 would have long term skin saving effects vs someone who is darker skinned and doesn't need as much protection. 

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-23-2013
Mon, 06-09-2014 - 9:58am

Most of my makeup and facial products have SPF 15 in them. If I am going out in the sun I use a Coppertone spray with SPF 30 and then Coppertone Sensitive Skin Faces 50 for my face and neck.

My mother has skin damage from baking in the sun most of her life and she said she wishes she had known to use sunscreen when she was younger. She said if she could have seen then what her skin would look like now she would have been very diligent about protecting her skin when she was my age.

Avatar for sabrtooth
iVillage Member
Registered: 12-03-1999
Mon, 06-09-2014 - 10:53am

Dark skinned people need JUST as much protection as lighter skinned people. 

A SPF stands forSun Protection Factorand refers to the theoretical amount of time you can stay in the sun without getting sunburned. For example, an SPF of 15 would allow you to stay in the sun 15 times longer than you could without protection.  For example, if you burn after 10 minutes of sun exposure, an SPF of 15 will allow you to be in the sun for up to 150 minutes without burning.  But before you head for the beach, you should know that this equation is not always accurate. People usually use far less sunscreen than the amount used in testing. In the real world, the average sun worshipper uses half the amount of sunscreen used in the laboratory, which could result in a sunburn in half the time.

So actually, sunscreen doesn't give you "protection", it gives you TIME.  And that time is affected not only by how much sunscreen you put on, but also by what happens after you put it on.  Sweat, rub your face, get in the water, and it's gone.  So you need to reapply it liberally, and repeatedly.

Avatar for ubergeek
Community Leader
Registered: 09-23-2010
Mon, 06-09-2014 - 11:03am

sabrtooth wrote:
Dark skinned people need JUST as much protection as lighter skinned people.


Actually, you're incorrect. While Darker skinned people do need skin protection, their protection level can start higher which is why 3% difference for a fair skinned person would mean a world of difference vs 3% with a darker skinned person with the higher numbered SPFs (as the OP stated).   

"Dark-skinned people, including blacks, Hispanics, Asians, and Native Americans, naturally produce more of a chemical called melanin, which gives the skin color and absorbs the sun’s damaging ultraviolet (UV) rays. In fact, dark-skinned blacks have a natural skin protection factor (SPF) of up to 13, and filter twice as much UV radiation as fair-skinned people."  http://www.med.nyu.edu/content?ChunkIID=157004

No where was it said they don't need protection. A darker skinned person may not need as much - as the 3% difference would give because they already have an extra 3% so spending money on a SPF 70 would be a waste where if you're fair skinned, it COULD mean the world. (And I'm just throwing 3% out there - I don't actually know what percent). 

Avatar for ubergeek
Community Leader
Registered: 09-23-2010
Mon, 06-09-2014 - 11:12am

I really don't know if stacking would have any benefit unless they were different chemical compounds doing different things. Being that I have sensitive skin, I usually just go with sunscreen in my moisturizer (which is a broad spectrum SPF 15) and then add a full-on facial sunscreen on top of it all. I usually stick to about SPF 50 or SPF 70. (I also use similar across my body, just not one made for the face.) 

I just had a facial on Saturday and the esthetician told me I have some light sun damage but otherwise my skin is aging well (really? lol). Anyway, I know the light damage is for those carefree days when I would skip the overall sunscreen. I had a time a few years ago where I skipped it and didn't realize I'd be out in the full sun and burned myself to a crisp (which isn't hard). So be vigilant! 

Avatar for sabrtooth
iVillage Member
Registered: 12-03-1999
Mon, 06-09-2014 - 2:40pm

I'll be happy to pass that along to my Hispanic and African-American sons-in-law, who burn JUST as badly as their toad-belly white, red-headed wives, and who have been wastfully wearing SPF 50 all these years because it gave them the longest "minutes-till-burn".  Just like it does with anyone.

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-16-2008
Mon, 06-09-2014 - 6:34pm

SPF 30 mineral sunscreen per my dermatologist.  Everyday.

Avatar for ubergeek
Community Leader
Registered: 09-23-2010
Tue, 06-10-2014 - 12:35pm

sabrtooth wrote:

I'll be happy to pass that along to my Hispanic and African-American sons-in-law, who burn JUST as badly as their toad-belly white, red-headed wives, and who have been wastfully wearing SPF 50 all these years because it gave them the longest "minutes-till-burn". Just like it does with anyone.

Wow. Seems you have no problem telling others how wrong they are, yet when given a scientific answer, you throw a tantrum. You have a problem with what was said, bring it up with NYU. 

You are missing the point. The difference is in the HIGHER SPF numbers, such as 70-90. The 3% difference will NOT make a difference on someone with a darker skin tone. They would be wasting their money on buying SPF 90 vs SPF 70. Most EVERYONE would be, with the exception of the very fair skinned.  Standard SPF would be 30, which is recommended to pretty much everyone.  No where did anyone say that darker skinned people shouldn't wear sunscreen. 

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-16-2008
Tue, 06-10-2014 - 4:00pm

I would definitely put a lot more faith in a NYU research paper than someone's anecdotes based on a sample of 4!

And by the way, sunscreen does offer PROTECTION, albeit limited.  The reason that you get more time before you burn is because it blocks some of the ultra-violet rays.  Less UV rays = more time before you burn.

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-16-2008
Tue, 06-10-2014 - 4:00pm

Double post, deleted.