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A great mineral sunscreen for darker skins — no gray cast!

August 4th, 2014 · No Comments · Cosmetics, Personal Care, Skin Care

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Have you ever used a mineral sunscreen that left your complexion looking totally “off”? Like with a gray or whitish cast? Very deathly? Well, if you have, you are gonna love this product I’m about to tell you about.

gray complexion woman

I can’t even count all of the mineral sunscreens I have tried over the years. Too many. Mineral sunscreens are considered safer and are not as toxic to our health when compared to chemical sunscreens. A chemical, called oxybenzone, that is found in many chemical-based sunscreens is particularly evil. Oxybenzone is an endocrine disruptor — meaning it messes with your hormones. Hormone disruption can cause all types of problems: reproductive issues, cancers, tumors, endometriosis…need I go on? Since oxybenzone is so popular in American sunscreens, I was determined to make the switch to mineral sunscreen a.s.a.p.!

Now, here’s the rub. Those mineral sunscreens don’t blend in well on darker skin tones. Mineral sunscreens are usually a white liquid or lotion composed of zinc oxide, titanium dioxide or both. They are “physical” sunscreens and create an actual barrier between your skin and the damaging UV rays. And that barrier is visible on darker skin. No matter how much you rub most mineral sunscreens into your skin, that white cast remains. Depending on your complexion and the particular brand you choose to use, your skin either has a white cast or a gray one. It looks horrid and can look even worse in direct sunlight.

So, what’s a girl to do? Well, I just kept trying different brands. After trying out drugstore brands and having no luck, I moved on to higher-end brands. Still no luck, so I tried foreign brands (Japanese, European). Nothing blended in to my satisfaction, UNTIL I tried OBAGI sunscreen.

OBAGI Medical’s Sun Shield Matte Broad Spectrum SPF 50 sunscreen lotion is the truth!

OBAGI sun shield sunscreen

Now, here’s a little disclaimer…this sunscreen is not entirely mineral. It has two sunscreen ingredients: zinc oxide 10.5% (mineral) and octinoxate 10.5% (chemical). But, notice that the chemical filter is NOT oxybenzone and the fact that this product only has two sunscreen ingredients is a major plus. (Many sunscreens have four — mostly chemical– sun filters, including oxybenzone.)

I also researched titanium dioxide vs. zinc oxide. Zinc oxide is preferable over titanium dioxide. Zinc oxide has a lower EWG Cosmetics Database score and hence fewer health concerns. (The lower the score, the safer the cosmetic ingredient.)

Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep Cosmetic Database info on Zinc Oxide – click here.

Now, regarding that chemical octinoxate, it has an EWG moderate score of 6 versus Oxybenzone’s very high (and bad) score of 8. Therefore, it is not the safest product, but when it comes to chemical sunscreens, we don’t really have any better options. Based on my research, I feel a little better using octinoxate on my skin (in moderation) as opposed to oxybenzone. Using an 100% mineral sunscreen and walking around looking like I have been embalmed is just NOT an option (at least for me).

Compare the EWG’s SKIN DEEP Cosmetic Database info on:
Octinoxate (click here) versus Oxybenzone (click here)

So, now that we got all the heavy stuff outta the way, let me tell you about the product…

OBAGI Medical Sun Shield Matte Broad Spectrum SPF 50 is:

  • a white lotion that is very creamy and thick upon application, but that blends into your skin wonderfully. You will not feel it or see it once it is rubbed in. It will become invisible.
  • Does NOT feel greasy on the skin. It feels “clean” on the skin once rubbed in. Not heavy at all. It is MATTE. (And I have combination/oily skin.)
  • Leaves a nice base for your makeup, sort of like a primer. When you apply foundation, it will not “ball up”.
  • Protects against both UVA and UVB rays
  • Has a high SPF of 50

TCS Tip: Make sure to rub in well around your hairline. Make sure to let it completely dry BEFORE applying makeup.

For performance, TCS gives this product 4/5 stars.

I last purchased this product or $37.50 at This product is pricey, but it will last a long time if you are using it solely on your face. Though, I like to tell you about lower priced cosmetic products, I think this particular product is totally worth the price because of the way it performs.

Try it out and tell me what you think!

This product is available for cheaper via Amazon:

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