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Summer Skin: Sunscreens and Bronzers

Sunscreens and bronzers are two most used beauty products of the summer. Both indispensable during this time of year and ones with strong associations to summer though both are used year round.

Sunscreens and bronzers have recent histories, with bronzers and self tanners being the youngest of the two. It was not until the 1950’s when sunscreens were widely available and the 1980’s for bronzers. In such a short time these products have made an indelible stamp on our culture. There are so many to choose from and many companies that make both of them.

Sunscreens

The first sunscreen product, brought out by a company still in existence today Piz Buin. In 1938, chemist Will Baltzer came up with his Gletscher Creme (Glacier Cream), named for the place where he got the sunburn. In 1944, Benjamin Greene, an airman turned pharmacist brought out Red Vet Pet, which stood for red veterinary petrolatum which blocked ultraviolet radiation. This sticky red substance similar to petroleum jelly was developed during World War II. Coppertone acquired the patent and began marketing it under the Coppertone Girl and Bain de Soleil in the early 1950’s. It wasn’t until 1962, credited to Franz Greiter, that sunscreen or the concept of a Sun Protection Factor (SPF), becoming the worldwide standard to measure the effectiveness of sunscreen. Today, the best sunscreen rated overall, is La Roche-Posay ANTHELIOS, particularly for women over 40 because it shields both UVB and UVA rays.

Top 5 Sunscreens

1. La Roche-Posay ANTHELIOS SPF 50 (separate ones for body and face)
2. Clarins UV Day Screen High Protection SPF 40
3. Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch Sunblock SPF 454. Badger Sunscreen for Face and Body, SPF 30
5. California Baby No Fragrance SPF30+ Sunscreen Lotion

Bronzers

It was Coco Chanel, who back in the 1920’s upon return from a Mediterranean holiday donning a golden tan, inspired the desired for the bronzed look. The first bronzer came out in 1984 by the French cosmetics company Guerlain (and it was this writers first bronzer and still a favorite). Since then, just about every cosmetic company now makes a bronzer or self tanning product. Choosing the best one for you out of a sea of products can be a daunting, so here is a little perspective on the matter. Deciding on fluid or powder and how to layer them may help narrow down the choices. Choosing by types best suited for your skin is a great place to start. Why not try a few? See which suits you better, ones that are shimmery or matte or a combination. The formulations and colors have come a long way since the orange-y looks they used to produce, but all bronzers are not created equally, so its worth trying out a few to find your best shade and brand.

Top 5 Bronzers

1. Guerlain Terracotta
2. NARS Bronzing powder
3. Giorgio Armani Sheer Bronzer
4. Lancome Tropique Minerale (Limited Edition)
5. Estée Lauder Bronze Goddess

 

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