Archives for June 2012

Must-Have Sunscreens for Summer!

Stop sun damage before it starts. The most important part of everyone’s skincare routine should be what goes on BEFORE your makeup. Every day. Summer, Winter, Fall and Spring. But Summer is the most important time to bring the SPF.

Here are some lightweight, clean-feeling, non-comediogenic sunscreens that not only protect your skin from the sun, but have some extra benefits (vitamins, antioxidants, collagen builders and other goodies) for your skin.


Murad Essential C

MURAD Essential-C Day Moisture SPF 30

Cost: $60

Essential-C is a lightweight, citrus-scented moisturizer that is part of MURAD’s Sun Undone series. Vitamin C is important to help break down melanin in your skin and build collagen. This is our go-to moisturizer for daytime and makes adding sunscreen to our daily routine much easier.

Here is some more details about the sunscreen from Murad’s website:

Increased Vitamin C power and SPF in Essential-C Day Moisture SPF 30 provide powerful protection against environmental damage. Next generation Vitamin C and the patented Skin Repair System improve radiance, firmness and elasticity.

Additional features and ingredients:

  • Phospholipids and conditioners provide optimal hydration
    for environmentally stressed skin
  • Ectoin preserves hydration to optimize skin’s appearance and
    barrier function by reducing transepidermal water loss

LA MER The SPF 30 UV Protecting Fluid

Cost: $70

La Mer never fails to add a littler luxury to every day life.  Created with La Mer’s patented “Miracle Broth,” this SPF Protecting Fluid not only heals the skin from the inside out, but protects from outside elements. With a silky, lightweight feel, a heavenly smell and a matte finish, this sunscreen will not irritate skin or cause breakouts. Light enough to be a primer, it moisturizes, protects and makes your skin glow. An extravagant purchase that is worth the price. (Also available in a 3 tinted shades with SPF 18.)

Here’s some info from the La Mer website:

A treatment that is light years ahead of its time.

Ideal for all skin types, this weightless, high-powered fluid keeps skin soft, comfortable and hydrated as it helps protect skin against UVA/UVB rays and prevent the appearance of discolorations. Transparent on skin, it gives skin a radiant glow and is ideal as a makeup primer.

LUZERN Laboratories La Defense SPF 30

Cost: $45

This lightweight, non-greasy, organic sunscreen is great to wear under make-up. Because it is all-natural, it will not cause you to break out. And it has the all-important Zinc Oxide (a must for sunscreens), but has the bonus of rice peptides, minerals, green tea and beta-carotene — all without preservatives, synthetics, petrochemicals, sulfates and parabens. Not only does it protect your skin from the sun, but it gets to work on your skin, delivering wrinkle  busting minerals all while neutralizing pollution & ozone generated free radicals. Great for sensitive skin!

Here is some more information about this organic sunscreen from the Luzern website:

FIVE STAR UVA Protection + MMP Inhibitors

Shield your skin from UV-light, pollution and free radicals with 100% micronized, microdispersed mineral filters. Our powerful new peptide technology prevents the sun-induced breakdown of the collagen matrix – known as matrix metalloprotease (MMP) – one of the primary causes in the development of lines and wrinkles. This lightweight, transparent formula minimizes signs of premature aging and the formation of dark spots. Suitable for even the most delicate skin. So gentle it can be used to protect the delicate eye area and skin after aesthetic/clinical procedures. FORMULATED WITHOUT: – Preservatives – Parabens – Sulfates – Propylene Glycol – Synthetic Fragrances – Synthetic Dyes – Petro-Chemicals – Phthalates

Key Benefits:

o Anti-UVA/UVB protection helps delay early skin aging such as wrinkle formation, reduced elasticity, skin dryness and age spots
o 5 STAR UVA Rated – to block the #1 cause of wrinkles: UVA light
o Anti-MMP (sun-induced collagen damage)
o Potent antioxidant, anti-pollution and strong anti-inflammatory
o For all skin types, including sensitive or rosacea-prone skin.

Key Ingredients:

o Zinc Oxide provides broad spectrum UVA/UVB/UVC protection
o Advanced Rice Peptides prevent MMP (UV-light breakdown of the collagen matrix), one of the primary causes in the development of lines and wrinkles
o Alpha-Lipoic Acid, Green Tea and Beta-Carotene neutralize pollution & ozone generated free radicals

A BONUS budget friendly pick:

Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Liquid Daily Sun Protection SPF 55

Cost: $11.99

For an inexpensive sunscreen that does the job and keeps your skin protected and break-out free, buy a few of these bottles to throw in your purse, your car, your beach bag, so you never are without SPF protection.  Make sure to shake prior to using and smother your skin in this ultra light, very high SPF sunscreen.  Ultra Sheer Liquid Daily Sun Protection is a great sunblock at an even better price.
Ultra Sheer Liquid Daily Sun Protection layers invisibly under makeup while delivering powerful sun protection. This water-light formula spreads easily over skin and absorbs instantly for a weightless feel. With its breakthrough lightweight liquid formula and even, matte finish, it’s the perfect complement to your daily makeup routine. It can be used alone, over moisturizer or under foundation. 

  • Helioplex® Broad Spectrum UVA-UVB SPF 55 protection
  • Waterproof, sweatproof
  • Non-comedogenic (won’t clog pores)
  • Oil-free, PABA free

Best Sun Spot Solutions

It’s that time of year again to get out the sunblock, the floppy hats and guard against damaging UV rays. But what do you do if the sun spots have already taken their toll? Here are some of our favorite remedies for reducing hyperpigmentation, sunspots or melasma.

Kiehl’s has a lightweight, super powerful, fast-acting serum that seems to be quite effective in reducing in breaking about the melanin that causes sunspots. Here is some information from Kiehl’s website:
Clearly Corrective DARK SPOT SOLUTION ($49.50) is a fast-acting serum that evens skin tone and diminishes dark spots to impart overall radiance and luminosity to the skin:

• In as little as 2 weeks, 55% of women clinically demonstrated a significant reduction in dark spot intensity.

• In 4 weeks, 69% of women clinically demonstrated a continued reduction in dark spots intensity and 73% of women showed a significant reduction in acne scarring.  Reduction in other skin discolorations was clinically evident among 69% of women.

• In 8 weeks, 87% of women clinically demonstrated more uniform skin tone to deliver breakthrough clarity.

• With continued daily usage, Clearly Corrective helps to prevent the formation of future dark spots and other skin discolorations.

SHISEIDO WHITE LUCENT Intensive Spot Targeting Serum (Cost $125 for 30 ml., $170 for 50 ml.)

Shiseido’s WHITE LUCENT line promises fading of dark spots in 10 days! The serum has a light scent, goes on smooth and disappears into your skin effortlessly. We have noticed a slight reduction in dark spots but are wondering if you need to use the whole line to get significant results, not just the serum? Here are some details from Shiseido’s site:

A super brightening serum created to diminish stubborn dark spots in 10 days and prevent future pigmentation from appearing. Formulated with smoothing and re-texturizing ingredients to enhance clarity and radiance for flawless, perfectly even-toned skin.

  • Developed with advanced Shiseido Multi-Action Brightening System+, targeting all types of hyper-pigmentation and their causes: dark spots, age spots, acne scars and uneven skin tones.

Contains ME Complex (Yomogi Extract and Angelica Root Extract) to accelerate cell turnover and diminish and eliminate melanin pigment.

NIA 24 Skin Strengthening Complex (cost $85.00)

NIA 24 has been getting a lot of buzz ever since Courtney Cox and Dr. Oz mentioned using the line. This niacin powered product is part of a line that is designed to improve severely sun-damaged skin. Make sure you ask for a sample to see if you have an allergic reaction because some people have mentioned sensitivity. We tested it and the results have been positive. It’s worth it to splurge on NIA’s sunblock which has the same lightening abilities paired with UVA/UVB protection. A MUST to keep your skin smooth and clear!

Here is some information on NIA 24 Skin Strengthening Complex:

Neither heavy nor too light, this fortified cream visibly reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles by enhancing the skin’s barrier function, accelerating repair and delivering continual moisturization.


  • Continuous, deep delivery of Pro-Niacin™ strengthens the skin barrier.
  • Pro-Niacin™ is clinically shown to visibly improve skin tone, texture and hyperpigmentation.
  • Vitamin A helps to improve elasticity and skin texture.
  • Antioxidants Green Tea and Rosemary restore and protect skin.
  • Ceramides reinforce the skin barrier to maximize the moisture-holding capacity for smoother, firmer skin.
  • Evening Primrose and Wheat Germ oils deliver moisture.

Dermaxyl™ Peptide Complex visibly eases deeper wrinkles and expression lines.