The Miraculous Sunscreen I Take Everywhere (That Doesn’t Make Me Break Out)
Sunscreen used to make me break out. Every morning I'd wrestle with the same decision: Do I want to use sunscreen on my face and deal with whiteheads from clogged pores? Or do I want to skip the sunscreen and contend with melasma and possibly melanoma caused by sun exposure? Not a fun way to start the day—or a sunny vacation. Fortunately, I found ColoreScience Sunforgettable Brush-On Sunscreen, and it changed my whole life—and my whole face. Now I start every morning with a few fast swipes of this miracle mineral sunscreen and throw it in my bag for mess-free touch-ups. Goodbye breakouts! Hello sunbeams!
Skin cancer! Melasma! Sun spots! Fine lines! Premature aging! Permanent skin damage! I know, I know. We’ve all heard it five trillion times from every dermatologist, magazine editor, and parent: Wear sunscreen every single day. Sunscreen application (and reapplication every two hours) is a necessary requirement to prevent skin cancer and aging. This is especially true for your face, where the sun’s ray does major damage to thin skin that’s almost constantly exposed to UVA and UVB rays—even through windows. But…I have to admit. There were many instances when I’d skip sunscreen altogether. My skin tends to be on the oily side, and oil-based sunscreens felt heavy and made me breakout. I was in a double bind. Sunscreen gave me skin problems in the short term, but skipping it would lead to long term skin problems. Another hiccup? I wasn’t a fan of chemical-based sunscreens. While no studies shown they’re unsafe, they can be absorbed into the bloodstream, and that makes me squeamish. (The FDA is currently calling for more data on the ingredients used in chemical sunscreen and still advocates we protect our skin since the jury is out on avobenzone, but the verdict is in for sun exposure—it’s carcinogenic full stop.)
So to recap, chemical sunscreens made me breakout, felt icky on my skin, and are under investigation by the FDA. But I knew I absolutely had to do something to protect my skin from the sun. I called a dermatologist for her take, and she recommended using something else entirely: a mineral-based sunscreen. Mineral sunscreens work differently than chemical sunscreens. Instead of being absorbed into the skin, mineral sunscreens sit on top of the skin and deflect UV rays away from you. It sounds made up, but it works. Science! Mineral sunscreens are also formulated with zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, ingredients that are generally tolerated by people with sensitive and acne-prone skin, like yours truly. Essentially, the dermatologist was recommending a product I didn’t think existed: sunscreen that would protect my face from UV rays and keep my skin clear from breakouts. Reader, I was skeptical. I was even less convinced when I googled the exact product she recommended, ColoreScience Sunforgettable Brush-On Sunscreen.
First of all, it came with a brush applicator. What? And the company’s slogan—”Looks like nothing. Protects from everything”—made me nervous. I was used to glopping on a glob of white cream all over my face—you could definitely tell where I applied and the white cast around my nose and cheeks proved it. Another hesitation? The cost. Sunforgettable retails around $60. I was used to paying about $15 for a tube of drugstore sunscreen. But. I was also paying in the triple digits for other skin care products to fight acne and sun spots, so if this mineral stuff really worked, it would be a money saver. Sunforgettable is available in four shades: fair, medium, tan, and deep. I chose fair, clicked the purchase button, and wore wide-brim hats while I waited for my much-needed miracle product. I hoped it would be delivered in time for my upcoming trip to Los Angeles.
ColoreScience Sunforgettable Brush-On Sunscreen arrived as expected, with the mineral sunscreen stored in a see-through tube that served as the handle of the brush applicator. I followed the directions and gave the tube a tap and the brushes a flick to get the powder moving through the bristles. I gently wiped the brush on the back of my hand and saw, nothing. It didn’t look or feel anything like the sunscreen I was used to. It didn’t look or feel like anything at all. Hesitantly, I applied a layer all over my face, the backs of my hands, and my shoulders. Then, I applied it again because it didn’t feel like anything! I’ll admit, I was scared to step out in the sun because I felt bare-faced. Past users have expressed the same fear, that they aren’t actually applying product. But that’s how miraculous Sunforgettable is, it truly doesn’t feel like wearing anything at all. I can attest that it definitely works. I didn’t get a sunburn (or a zit) at Santa Monica Beach on my first trial run using Sunforgettable. At long last, I’d found a sunscreen that worked for me.
Since my first purchase, I’ve worn ColoreScience Sunforgettable Brush-On Sunscreen almost every single day. It’s protected my face on six continents, throughout the Caribbean, scuba diving in Brazil, and on my daily biking commute to work in New York. I’ve swiped it on my dad’s head and my nephew’s face. I even use it as a setting powder on top of my makeup, a la Drew Barrymore. Yes, it’s important to reapply the product after a few hours (just like any sunscreen), but this stuff works. The minerals also blocks HEV light (blue light from laptops and TVs) and provides protection against pollution exposure and infrared radiation. The brushes are antimicrobial to prevent germs and sodium hyaluronate is also moisturizing. And more importantly to my vanity, Sunforgettable doesn’t cause whiteheads or zits. If I sound evangelical about this, that’s fine. I have been reborn as the model sunscreen user, and I’m ready to spread the brush-on gospel.
Too Long, Didn’t Read: ColoreScience Sunforgettable Brush-On Sunscreen
- SPF 50 with UVA/UVB protection that lasts for up to 80 minutes in water/sweaty conditions
- Titanium dioxide, zinc oxide, and minerals are less dangerous than traditional chemical sunscreens
- Acne sufferers report excellent results (minerals won’t make you break out like oily sunscreens)
- Works beautifully over the top of makeup
- Easy to apply to face, hands, shoulders, and chest for quick all-day touchups
- Ultra convenient packaging, won’t spill or leak in your bag or purse
- Available in four pigments from light to dark skin tones
- Brush is refillable, so you can reuse the packaging and save money
- Antimicrobial bristles help maintain freshness
- Widely available on Nordstrom, Amazon, Dermstore, and Walmart
- One con: you can’t use this on your entire body (brushing it on would take forever)
- The Best Drugstore Sunscreens to Add to Your Amazon Cart Right Now
- The Best Tinted Sunscreens for Keeping Your Skin Safe
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