Celebrating and loving the skin you’re in is one of the most important things you can do. One way to do that, literally, is to have a solid skin-care regimen — and that always includes sunscreen. Your mom may have been able to get away with slathering herself in baby oil and baking in the sun, but you know better.
And now, on the heels of CVS vowing to take every single low SPF sunscreen off the shelves, comes more news on the sun protection front — news that has, surprisingly, nothing to do with actual sunscreen. According to Allure, a recent study is exploring whether makeup plays a key role in reducing the risk of skin cancers.
Just this month, Dr. Phillip Artemi of the Australasian College of Dermatologists presented new research at the college’s Annual Scientific Meeting. Artemi focused his research on cosmeceuticals — such as foundation, powder, eyeliner, mascara, and lipsticks — and found that makeup is the second most important sun protectant after sunscreen, with the ability to reduce the potential of developing skin cancers around the eyes.
"While sunscreens do a lot, they don't do enough and shouldn't be relied on solely for skin health," Artemi told The Sydney Morning Herald. "We now advise that functional colored cosmetics should be added to the long-standing advice in order to further reduce the risk of skin cancer and premature aging as well as protecting against the increasing danger of air pollution." (The product Artemi stays away from, however? Lip gloss. It isn't long-lasting enough to offer any significant protection.)
New York City-based dermatologist Sejal Shah, MD, explained why makeup works in this way: “Pigments and other light reflecting ingredients in makeup can act similarly to physical blockers and afford some protection for the skin,” he told Allure.
It's crucial to remember that these findings don't mean you can swap tinted moisturizer for sunscreen or skimp on your SPF application throughout the day — but you do have a quick comeback now for anyone who teases you for wearing a smoky eye to the pool party.
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