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These are the musings of a skincare junkie + writer + brand guru with 25+ years of product wisdom put into action to demystify skin care. 

You can change your skin’s destiny.™

BRANDS I LOVE AND BELIEVE IN : Supergoop! Facial Sunscreen ☀️☀️☀️

"Daily SPF is the most important thing you can do for your skin. No moisturizer or miracle serum in the world is as beneficial as basic sun protection." I couldn't have said it any better than that, so I'll just quote my favorite sun care brand, Supergoop! 


Last week, I delved into the ancient science of fermentation and trending fermented skincare products and ingredients. I wrote about the K-beauty brand Whamisa, created entirely around the concept of fermentation. So, I got to thinking over the week about brands that are established around a single skincare concept. La Mer was founded around its gimmicky fermented "miracle broth". There's actually no jaw-dropping miracle there — it's seaweed. Cult, J-beauty brand SK-II heralds its own miraculous brew, a basic fermented sake extract it calls pitera. Amore Pacific's Mamonde brand is rooted in (no pun!) flowers. And while all of these ideas are certainly intriguing, with varying pro-skin health benefits, I'm hard-pressed to identify a skincare brand created around a single basic concept that's more important and indispensable than Supergoop! — born of the concept of sun protection. Now that's something I believe in!

There is no more effective anti-aging skincare product than an everyday sunscreen. Period. 

Every single one of Supergoop's 25+ products contains sunscreen ingredients. Several are mineral sunscreen formulas, but most are formulated with chemical sunscreens. While I prefer mineral-based sunscreens in the form of zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, for the last two years my go-to eye cream in my morning regimen has been the brand's Advanced Anti-Aging Eye Cream Broad Spectrum Sunscreen SPF 37. It's actually a blend of mineral and chemical sunscreens with 10.1% Zinc Oxide and 7.5% Octinoxate. I know, the SPF 37 instead of the more conventional 30 sounds nuts; but you know what, I’ll take the extra 7 protection any day! Especially in my eye area. In fact, one of the leading causes of dark circles — and one of the most preventable — is sun damage. Skin around the eye area is the thinnest and most delicate on your entire face. It needs as much protection as you can give it. In fact, that’s why eye area lines are the first signs of skin aging on your whole face. I use the Supergoop! Advanced Anti-Aging Eye Cream inside the occipital bone right up to my lashes, as well as on my upper eyelids. It's rich in minerals, oat peptide and replenishing non-fragrant plant oils like Squalane, Olive Fruit Oil and both Sunflower and Safflower Seed Oils.

Read more about eye care in my previous blog post SKINCARE 101: Do We Even Need a Separate Eye Cream? 

The Ingredient List of the Supergoop! Advanced Anti-Aging Eye Cream Broad Spectrum Sunscreen SPF 37:

Active ingredient: Zinc Oxide 10.1% and Octinoxate 7.5%

Ingredients: Water, Ethylhexyl Stearate, Cyclopentasiloxane, Propanediol, Butylene Glycol, C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, Potassium Cetyl Phosphate, Adipic Acid/Diethylene Glycol/Glycerin, Crosspolymer Isohexadecane, Cetearyl Alcohol, Glyceryl Stearate, PEG-100 Stearate, Mica, Phenoxyethanol, Hydroxyethyl Acrylate/Sodium Acryloyldimethyl Taurate Copolymer Imperata, Cylindrica Root Extract, Titanium Dioxide, Ceteareth-20, Squalane, Glycerin, Triethoxycaprylylsilane, Xanthan Gum, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Polysorbate 60, Trisodium Ethylenediamine Disuccinate, Chlorphenesin, Citric Acid, Dimethicone, Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Ethylhexylglycerin, Oleth-3 Phosphate, PEG-8, Punica Granatum Seed Oil, Carthamus Tinctorius (Safflower) Seed Oil, Avena Sativa (Oat) Peptide, Silica, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Carbomer, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Extract, Euterpe Oleracea Fruit Extract Methylisothiazolinone, Tocotrienols, Lauroyl Lysine.

Supergoop! 100% Mineral Smooth & Poreless Matte Screen SPF 40 has a slight, blendable tint. 

Supergoop! 100% Mineral Smooth & Poreless Matte Screen SPF 40 has a slight, blendable tint. 

For my face, I actually have two Supergoop! sunscreen products that I love. One is, of course, the final step in my AM regimen — and the other is a special mid-day essential. In the morning, after my multiple vitamin, peptide and hyaluronic serums, I reach for Supergoop's new 100% Mineral Smooth & Poreless Matte Screen SPF 40 which replaced the Missha All Around Safe Block Sebum Zero Sun SPF 50+/PA+++ that I really liked, but used up. (It's an excellent product, but I wanted to test something new.)

The Supergoop! Smooth & Poreless Matte Screen is a super lightweight, slightly tinted formula that leaves no white cast (come to think of it, it's tinted, how could it?!). Awarded the Clean at Sephora seal, it's an excellent product that contains an ideal blend of 17% Zinc Oxide and 0.7% Titanium Dioxide. In addition, there are several replenishing non-fragrant plant oils, vitamins, peptides and my favorite natural calming extract Bisabolol, an active component of chamomile that's a superb soother of skin irritation. 

Most intriguing, however, may be an ingredient called Buddleja Officinalis Flower Extract or "butterfly bush extract" that Supergoop! claims "helps protect against blue light that’s emitted from electronic devices like your smartphone or computer." Watch for claims like this to make their way into the mainstream in the coming year. Studies are coming from all corners assessing the effects on our skin of the blue light emanating from our numerous electronic devices. It's always something!

The blue light being emitted by my iPhone may be causing additional skin damage. 

The blue light being emitted by my iPhone may be causing additional skin damage. 

The Ingredient List of the Supergoop! 100% Mineral Smooth & Poreless Matte Screen SPF 40:

Active ingredient: Titanium Dioxide 0.7%, Zinc Oxide 17%: Sunscreens

Ingredients: Cyclopentasiloxane, Coco-Caprylate, Isododecane, Coco-Caprylate/Caprate, Dimethicone Crosspolymer, Silica Dimethyl Silylate, Dimethicone/Bis-Isobutyl PPG-20 Crosspolymer, Argania Spinosa Kernel Oil, Cyclohexasiloxane, Tocopheryl Acetate, C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, Polyglyceryl-3 Polyricinoleate, Dimethicone, Iron Oxides (CI 77492), Water (Aqua), Isostearic Acid, Cyclotetrasiloxane, Propanediol, Ethylhexylglycerin, PEG/PPG-18/18 Dimethicone, Bisabolol, Alumina, Hydrogen Dimethicone, Iron Oxides (CI 77491), Polyhydroxystearic Acid, Iron Oxides (CI 77499), Buddleja Officinalis Flower Extract, Triethoxycaprylylsilane, Tocopherol, Phenoxyethanol, Potassium Sorbate, Hydrangea Arborescens Root Extract, Morus Alba Root Extract, Polysorbate 20, Resveratrol, Scutellaria Lateriflora Extract, Caprylyl Glycol, Hexylene Glycol, Pentapeptide-21.

And the award for best sunscreen mid-day touch-up goes to...

This brings me to perhaps the most surprising of the three Supergoop! products that are key to my daily UV defense. It's surprising because it's unusual, because it fulfilled a real gap in my sun protection — and because I don't use it as directed! I work from home a lot and by mid- to late-afternoon, I want to wipe the palette clean and throw on a soothing sheet mask. (As if you haven't noticed from my posts.) So, I do a double cleanse and remove all traces of sunscreen and whatever else has accumulated on my skin like city grime and damaging, free-radicalized pollutants. But several times a week, I find myself popping back out while the sun is still shining brightly — to run to the bank, my fave cafe, or the pharmacy downstairs. And while I won't go outside without sun protection, I don't feel like applying a sunscreen moisturizer either. I just need something quick! Like a mist. The Supergoop! 100% Mineral Sunscreen Mist is pure perfection. It's funny, though, the brand markets this spray as a sunscreen for the body. It comes in a huge 6 oz. / 177ml can for the price of a body product, $34. And this is why it's so beneficial to know your ingredients! It's an excellent formula for skin anywhere on your body — including your face. Antioxidant rich, skin-replenishing marigold, safflower, and sunflower extracts are ingredients I love in my facial skin care. As well as soothing Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Jojoba Esters and Calendula Flower Extract. I mist it on and go! When I get back after an hour or so, it washes right off. It does the job of preventing incidental exposure to UV and I've taken the important step of protecting my skin from the aging effects of even a small amount of sun exposure.

The Ingredient List of the Supergoop! 100% Mineral Sunscreen Mist with Marigold Extract Broad Spectrum SPF 30:

Active ingredient: Zinc Oxide 12%: Sunscreen
Ingredients: Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Bentonite, Butyloctyl Salicylate, Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract, Caprylhydroxamic Acid, Caprylyl Glycol, Carthamus Tinctorius (Safflower) Seed Oil, Cetearyl Alcohol, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract, Coco Glucoside, Glycerin, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Heptyl Undecylenate, Jojoba Esters, Melissa Officinalis Leaf Extract, Methyl Dihydroabietate, Nasturtium Officinale Flower/Leaf Extract, Spiraea Ulmaria Flower Extract, Water.

No Skincarma blog review about the importance of sun protection would be complete without an introduction to my friends Jeanne and Susan, identical twin sisters.
Twin sisters Jeanne (left) and Susan (right).

Twin sisters Jeanne (left) and Susan (right).

No, they're not actual friends; in fact, we've never met. But they inspire me to be better like a good friend would. If you need proof of the very real effects of sun damage on skin, look no further than Jeanne and Susan. The sisters looked exactly alike growing up. But Susan has spent her life in Florida worshiping the sun (she's also a heavy smoker, a double whammy!) while sister Jeanne lives in Ohio and has generally avoided overexposure to the sun (and smoking) throughout her life. While both were 61 when the photo was taken, a scientific study of Susan's skin at Case Western Reserve University showed an 11-year age difference — Susan has extreme hyperpigmentation (sun spots), deeper wrinkles and degradation in skin elasticity. 

Discover Supergoop! They're an intriguing brand that's serving a very important purpose in the skincare arena and they deserve your attention. And, please use an alcohol-free sunscreen! Every morning. Even on cloudy, seemingly sunless days...


Read more about mineral vs. chemical sunscreens in an excellent piece from the skincare guru Paula Begoun here.

PRODUCTS I LOVE AND BELIEVE IN : NIOD's Survival Antioxidant Networked Skin Protection

PRODUCTS I LOVE AND BELIEVE IN : NIOD's Survival Antioxidant Networked Skin Protection

SKIN CARE 101 : Fermented Ingredients, Extracts & Products 🍶🥖🍚

SKIN CARE 101 : Fermented Ingredients, Extracts & Products 🍶🥖🍚