Take a trip to your local beauty hall and you’ll see SPF everywhere - in moisturisers, foundations, and even lipsticks. Gone are the days of tin foil and baby oil; we’re all aware of the long-term effects sun damage can have on our skin.
So, if you’re someone who looks after your skin, you’re probably already wearing SPF every day. However, are you wearing the right kind of SPF? If you’re worried about the ingredients used in your skincare products, SPF should be no exception. Sure, it may protect you from the sun - but what about everything else?
What is SPF and why should you be using it?
Before we dive in, let’s cover the basics. SPF or ‘sun protection factor’ is a ratio that estimates the efficacy of your sunscreen in protecting your skin from UV rays over time; the higher the SPF, the less likely it is that your skin will be damaged. These harmful UVA/UVB rays have been identified as the main cause of skin cancer, as well as premature ageing (symptoms include lines or wrinkles, pigmentation, and an uneven complexion).
To make sure you block out both UVA and UVB rays, you need to look for broad-spectrum coverage in your skincare products. It’s also worth pointing out that UV rays can penetrate clouds - even living in the rainy UK, like the Dr Jackson’s team, doesn’t excuse you from wearing SPF!
The Skin Cancer Foundation recommends wearing at least SPF 15 for everyday activity, and SPF 30 for more intense sunshine or extended outdoor exposure. At Dr Jackson’s, we believe there’s no room for error when it comes to caring for your skin (plus we know our customers like to travel), so we’ve recently upgraded our 01 Day Cream from SPF20 to SPF30, giving your skin even more protection.
The problem with most SPFs on the market
If only it were that simple. Navigating your way through nasty toxins and harsh chemicals is a necessary part of healthy, sustainable skincare. A lot of SPFs on the market contain ingredients that, counterintuitively, can actually damage your skin, not to mention their devastating effects on the environment.
Here are the ones you should watch out for:
Octinoxate (and Oxybenzone), which are both linked to hormone disruption, as well as bleaching of coral reefs and coral death.
Dimethicone, a type of silicone that has been linked to clogging pores and worsening acne. It’s also non-biodegradable, meaning it has a negative impact on the environment both during the manufacturing process and once it is disposed of.
Paraffin, a petroleum byproduct linked with unsustainable sourcing and potential contamination with compounds that are irritants and carcinogens.
EDTA, which does not break down in the environment, which can be particularly problematic to aquatic life.
BHT, a preservative linked with skin irritation.
Polyacrylamide, which can cause reproductive and developmental toxicity (polyacrylamide breaks down into a acrylamide, which is a carcinogen).
The good news is that these ingredients, although widely used, are not necessary to produce an effective SPF. In fact, we have not used any of them in our new and improved 01 Day Cream SPF30 formula.
A word on mineral vs. non-mineral sunscreens
Mineral sunscreens are formulas that use only titanium dioxide and zinc oxide to physically block UV rays from reaching the skin, rather than filtering them out like artificial ingredients do. As a natural skincare company, you’d expect us to opt for the mineral version, right?
Quite the opposite. Our 01 Day Cream SPF30 is one of the few Dr Jackson’s products that contains chemical ingredients, as we don’t believe that mineral sunscreens are currently reliable enough to provide your skin with adequate protection. Having carried out extensive tests on mineral and non-mineral sunscreens, we’ve found the latter to be the safest option for now. As the technology develops, we will strive to continue reducing the amount of chemical ingredients in our SPF until a safe, all-natural formula is possible.
The choice is yours
Due to popular demand, we’ve also released a new version of the 01 Day Cream for those purists who prefer a non-SPF moisturiser. If you use other products that contain SPF - your foundation, for example - you may not wish to layer multiple sunscreens on your skin (if you’re prone to acne, you might find this triggers breakouts).
This lightweight, velvety moisturiser contains the same ingredients as our original 01 Day Cream:
Kigelia fruit extract: known for its calming and soothing properties, kigelia is ideal for problem skin, working to erase imperfections and even out skin tone.
Baobab seed oil: high in fatty acids, baobab encourages regeneration and promotes elasticity, visibly tightening the skin and diminishing scarring.
Marula seed oil and shea fruit butter: moisture-rich marula and shea retexturise and rejuvenate for a soft, youthful skin surface.
We’ve spent several years balancing these natural ingredients to perfect a formula that keeps skin nourished and hydrated all day long, at the same time delivering a beautifully silken finish. Just the right amount of dewy, the 01 Day Cream works as a fantastic base for makeup - or gives you the confidence to go without.