If you’re anything like me, you remember the days where we blissfully laid in the sun without a care in the world for sunscreen!
I remember my girlfriends putting baby oil on their skin to encourage that warm, toasty glow we used to consider healthy.
According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, 1 in 5 Americans will develop skin cancer by age 70. Incorporating just one product, a sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher into your regimen every day, can reduce your risk by 24%. Reducing wrinkles is a happy side effect of taking better care of ourselves by using sunscreen. We all want to extend ourselves with a strong, happy lifestyle as long as possible, right?
Today’s Sunscreens: Better For You, Better For The Environment Too!
Hawaii made history in 2018 by becoming the first US state to ban the sale of sunscreens that contain the chemicals oxybenzone and octinoxate, which are toxic to the ocean. Research has shown those chemicals break down coral reefs and disturb marine life. The good news, Darlings is we are fortunate to have so many alternative sunscreens for women over 50 that still block UV rays without polluting the water.
Two Ingredients to Look For
Over the years, I’ve discovered that not all sunscreens are created equal. Some of the most common sunscreens found at every pharmacy contain some of the worst ingredients. Remember: Your skin is your largest organ and what goes ON your skin, goes IN your body. Here are the ingredients to look out for:
Today’s Zinc Oxide
If you’re like a lot of women, you shy away from products with zinc oxide because all you can think about is that bleached white cream that covers the skin like a thick paste. Well, my darlings, that’s yesterday’s zinc oxide. Like wine, that white stuff we used to put on our noses has matured into a complex product with a full body of benefits. This maturity happened in the last decade at the hands of scientists who developed an advanced formula of zinc oxide now able to be applied to the skin without leaving behind a thick, white film. Other than blocking the sun’s rays, the other benefits of zinc oxide include keeping moisture locked into dry skin and reducing inflammation.
Two of my favorites include Clinique’s City Block and Neutrogena’s Sunblock 50 with Zinc. Clinique City Block was one of the first formulas to take advantage of today’s zinc oxide, the formula is lightweight, absorbs oil and is a broad-spectrum UVA/UVB daily sunscreen. The lightweight formula glides on my skin, even under my eyes and sensitive areas. I’ve heard women say this “the best” sunscreen they’ve used, Neutrogena’s Sunblock 50 is beloved for its non-greasy lotion specially designed for the face that’s also great for sensitive skin because it is free of-of fragrance, parabens, phthalates, dyes and irritating chemicals. It’s also gentle on skin and won’t sting eyes – a bonus when you’re outside staying active!
Hyaluronic Acid and Sunscreen
This is one of my all-time favorite skin care ingredients because of how it makes my skin look plump, hydrated and healthy. Listed on some products as “HA,” Hyaluronic Acid is naturally occurring in the human body and works by drawing moisture from the air, keeping skin moist. Aside from its plumping abilities, HA has antioxidant properties, shielding our skin from free radicals like pollution.
If you have dry skin and wear moisturizer with SPF, you may think you’re protected, but this isn’t smart ladies! It’s never enough to rely on the sunscreen in your moisturizer because the sunscreen gets diluted. A great sunscreen contains hyaluronic acid AND zinc oxide is EltaMD UV Daily Broad-Spectrum SPF 40. It goes on light, keeps your skin hydrated and protects it from the sun.
Tinted Sunscreen as Foundation Substitute
You know me, Darlings I’m on the go! Especially as the weather heats up, I don’t have time to spend hours on my make up and the more the temperature rises, the less I want the heavy feeling of foundation. Thankfully, there are SO MANY options! Tinted sunscreens come in a wide variety of skin tone colors and coverages, and are a great option for sunscreen for women over 50. One of my all-time favorites is Bye Bye Foundation SPF 50+ Broad Spectrum Physical Sunscreen by IT Cosmetics. A little dab goes a long way to provide hours of light coverage that blends well and compliments a variety of skin types and tones.
Chemical Sunscreens for Sensitive Skin
Now, don’t let the word “chemical” scare you off ladies, these sunscreens are designed for more delicate/sensitive skin, provide full spectrum protection, are oil free, and often super light and dry to the touch-without being drying. While I love a good tinted sunscreen, sometimes I want something less sticky and with no coverage. In those moments, I opt for a “chemical sunscreen” that absorbs the sun’s rays instead of blocking them. A great option is La Roche-Posay Anthelios Clear Skin Dry-Touch Sunscreen SPF 60
Brush-On Powder Sunscreens
An even lighter option that I’ve seen both men and women use is BrushOn Powder Sunscreens. Like a loose powder, these mineral-based sunscreens brush on (no messy fingers!) and provide full spectrum protection. Besides convenience, they are also popular because they do not contain any of the Hawaii-banned chemicals (oxybenzone and octinoxate) and are translucent. The minerals in brush-on sunscreen sit on top of the skin, rather than penetrate the skin, giving full protection, without all the goo. Additionally, the powders come in a variety of skin shades and are super water resistant — no more sunscreen in the eyes! A favorite brand is Brush On Block. It allows me to easily reapply while I go about my day and the slim applicator is a low impact addition to my makeup bag.
No one likes to talk about skin cancer, especially when we’re outside, enjoying the summer with our grandchildren and friends. The secret is to start incorporating sunscreen into your already smart skincare routine. Try a few different types and experiment with what works for you. Then, once you find the formula you like better, invest! Buy two bottles of your favorite formula, Darlings and you’ll never find yourself unprotected.
Have a favorite sunscreen for women over 50 that I didn’t cover in this post? Please comment in the space below with the product that you love! Or better yet, join MOXIE! and share it with the other women who are always ready to support you and share your secrets!