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Can Makeup With SPF Replace Sunscreens?

makeup

Makeup with SPF is like hitting 2 birds with 1 stone.  You’ll have a foundation to even out the skin tone as well as protection from the sun.  There are different formulations to choose from and you can match it with the color of your skin.  However, can makeup with SPF really protect you from harmful UV rays? Let’s spill the facts.

YOU NEED TO LAYER TONS OF MAKEUP TO GET THE SPF

According to cosmetic dermatologist Dr. Leslie Baumann, you need seven times the normal amount of foundation and 14 times the normal amount of powder to get the sun protection factor on the label. This means that you need to pile up on foundation and powder (like a kabuki doll) to achieve the sun protection that you need.  No one does this.

YOU HAVE TO KEEP RE-APPLYING MAKEUP

You need to apply an adequate amount of sunscreen (1 teaspoonful for the entire face and neck) and reapply every 2 hours to achieve full sun protection.  People rarely reapply makeup.

MAKEUP SPF USUALLY RANGES FROM 3-15 ONLY

Makeup usually has an SPF of 3-15 only.  The American Academy of Dermatology states that “Dermatologists recommend using a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30, which blocks 97 percent of the sun’s UVB rays. Higher-number SPFs block slightly more of the sun’s UVB rays, but no sunscreen can block 100 percent of the sun’s UVB rays.”

The bottom line is, makeup with SPF cannot replace sunscreens or sunblocks. It works best when used on top of an adequate layer of broad spectrum sunscreen (for UVA and UVB rays) SPF 30 and above.

Essential to every skin care routine, sunscreens are the first layer of protection for the skin against harmful UVA and UVB rays. Obagi has formulated a wide range of sunscreens that protect against UVA and UVB rays and defend against HEV and IR rays. Check out Obagi Medical's range of sunscreens.