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Why do I have to wear sunscreen under foundation?

Kbxl’s question…Hello Beauty Brains! I’ve seen it recommended to use sunscreen under foundation. What’s the point, wouldn’t foundation act inherently as a sunblock anyway? I’d like to know your opinion on this. Thank you!

The Beauty Brains’ response:

No, foundations by themselves are NOT adequate sunblocks.

Even though they contain ingredients that can cover your complexion, all foundations do not contain ingredients that absorb or block UV rays. And even though some foundations DO have an SPF rating, experts agree that this by itself is not enough protection. That’s because the SPF rating is usually quite low and because you don’t apply enough foundation to get adequate protection. Finally you may not apply foundation to all areas of your face, head, and neck that need to be protected. Suncreen works much better!

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Health and Beauty December 27, 2013, 10:21 pm

    Thankyou I was looking for the answer as well. Recently wrote an article on the frequency of application of sunscreen – How often to apply sunscreen.

  • Karen December 28, 2013, 5:00 am

    While I always wear sunscreen (and I do means “always” because I wear it 365 days a year), while touching up my foundation midday, I have often wondered if I should also be reapplying the sunscreen… which I confess I never do.

    Beauty Brain’s thoughts?

  • Kaya January 31, 2014, 12:08 pm

    What do you think about some recent products that claim to have 30 SPF rating, like eg. Maybelline Dream Fresh BB Cream? Do they work as sunscreens or it’s still not enough?

    • Randy Schueller January 31, 2014, 12:24 pm

      I trust that Maybelline has done the testing (or followed the OTC monograph) to ensure that their product delivers the SPF rating that they claim. But this is a pigmented color cosmetic so you’re not going to apply it everywhere like you would a regular sunscreen. (You wouldn’t use this product on your ears, would you?) So that means you still need a regular sunscreen to cover the rest of your face/neck.

      • Kaya January 31, 2014, 2:19 pm

        Thank you. As I see, the US reglamentations concerning SPF ratings on products have changed, so I believe a company like Maybelline cannot skip those rules, right? I live in Europe where it’s slightly different, but as they sell it in the US as well, that must be true about this 30 SPF. For what you say about application of the product – sure, I wouldn’t apply it everywhere 😉 But it’s good to know that not only classical “sunscreens” contain sunscreens.