Summer Skincare Myths: No, Your Foundation with SPF Isn't Enough


We have all heard at least a few of these common skincare beliefs, and at one point maybe even believed them. But as studies grow more in depth and further research is being done on these topics, we are learning more and more about the dangers of these common skincare misconceptions. Whether you don’t want to use sunscreen because you have dark skin, or you love your 15 minutes in the Ultraviolet B (UVB) - free tanning bed, these myth busters are a must-read for you! The first step to healthy and beautiful skin is learning how to protect it, and we’re here to help you learn how!

MYTH: I have dark skin so I don’t need to use sunscreen.

TRUTH: No one is immune to skin damage. Yes, people with darker skin do take longer to burn and do have some natural protection against the sun, but not nearly enough to protect them from the Ultraviolet (UV) rays that cause wrinkles and skin cancer. Researchers from the University of Cincinnati have actually found that dark-skinned people are more likely to die from skin cancer than light-skinned people. This is because people believe darker-skin tones do not need the protection that lighter ones do, so they are less likely to protect their skin as well as check for signs of skin cancer. To be safe, no matter what color your skin is, always wear sunscreen when you are outside.

MYTH: The more I wash my face, the better!

TRUTH: While washing your face is a great part of your skincare routine, overwashing your face can be damaging to your skin. You should not wash your face more than two times a day or use products that make your skin feel super tight. By doing this, you are stripping the natural oils from your skin, which can lead to irritation and dehydration of the skin.

MYTH: Tanning beds are fine for my skin as long as they don’t have UVB lights.

TRUTH: There are two types of UV rays to worry about: Ultraviolet A (UVA) and UVB. Although UVB rays are more intense than UVA rays, UVA rays are still dangerous.

Even if tanning beds do not have UVB lights, they will still have UVA lights that penetrate the skin. UVA rays can cause premature aging, wrinkling, and skin cancer.

MYTH: The higher the SPF the longer I can stay in the sun.

Clarissa Shetler and Christine Falsetti

TRUTH: Sun Protection Factor (SPF) is not an indication of how long the product will last, but is a predictor of how well it protects you from UVB or UVA rays. Most sunscreens primarily protect against UVB with minimal protection from UVA. Your best bet is to get a broad-spectrum sunscreen to ensure you are getting protection from both.

SPF 15 filters out ~ 93% of UVB rays

SPF 30 filters out ~ 97% of UVB rays

SPF 50 filters out ~ 98% of UVB rays

SPF 100 filters out ~100% of UVB rays

No matter the SPF, all sunscreen needs to be reapplied every two hours.

MYTH: Sleeping with makeup on for one or two nights won’t affect my skin.

TRUTH: While one or two nights of sleeping in makeup may not cause major damage to your skin, it definitely isn’t good for it. The makeup on your face is going to clog your pores, so there is a good chance that you will break out if you decide to leave your makeup on while you sleep. Also, by leaving your makeup on you are not giving your skin any time to recover from the oxidative stress from the day. This can lead to premature aging. Pollution from the air also affects your skin if you do not remove your makeup before bed, causing collagen breakdown over time, which will result in fine lines and wrinkles. To try and stop yourself from leaving your makeup on at night, leave a pack of makeup wipes in your room on your nightstand. That way, even if you’re exhausted, you won’t have an excuse to not remove your makeup.

MYTH: All sun damage to your skin will occur by age 18.

TRUTH: You do have a lot of skin damage from the sun by the time you are 18, but you can very easily still damage your skin after this. If you keep exposing your skin to the sun it will turn from bad to worse, and this will increase the likelihood of skin cancer. You want to protect your skin at every age!

MYTH: If a new product doesn’t work quickly, you should move on to something else.

TRUTH: It can take as long as eight to ten weeks for your skin to get used to a new regimen. To give yourself the best chance at getting the full effect of the product, keep using it for this time period. Not all products work the same for everyone, but you should give the product a chance before moving on to something else.

MYTH: You don’t need sunscreen on a cloudy day.

TRUTH: UV rays still reach the Earth on a cloudy day. Just because you can’t see the sun doesn’t mean it can’t harm your skin. Use sunscreen every day, no matter the weather, and make sure to reapply every two hours and after swimming or sweating.

MYTH: I’m protected because my makeup contains SPF.

TRUTH: According to Leslie Bauman, the author of The Skin Type Solution, you would have to put on 14 to 15 times the amount of makeup the average person wears to get full SPF coverage from your foundation or powder. Makeup with SPF helps, but make sure you are still putting on sunscreen when you go outside.

MYTH: Popping a pimple is okay if I clean the area afterwards.

TRUTH: Even if you clean the infected area afterwards, the best thing to do is to leave pimples alone and try not to touch your face. It can be difficult, and popping a pimple may feel relieving, but you may spread bacteria and push it deeper into your skin. This can cause inflammation and scarring. It will also spread under your skin, which is why you usually get another pimple in the surrounding area once you have popped the first one.

This post was first published on 8/10
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Patriarchy Stress Disorder is A Real Thing and this Psychologist Is Helping Women Overcome It

For decades, women have been unknowingly suffering from PSD and intergenerational trauma, but now Dr. Valerie Rein wants women to reclaim their power through mind, body and healing tools.

As women, no matter how many accomplishments we have or how successful we look on the outside, we all occasionally hear that nagging internal voice telling us to do more. We criticize ourselves more than anyone else and then throw ourselves into the never-ending cycle of self-care, all in effort to save ourselves from crashing into this invisible internal wall. According to psychologist, entrepreneur and author, Dr. Valerie Rein, these feelings are not your fault and there is nothing wrong with you— but chances are you definitely suffering from Patriarchy Stress Disorder.

Patriarchy Stress Disorder (PSD) is defined as the collective inherited trauma of oppression that forms an invisible inner barrier to women's happiness and fulfillment. The term was coined by Rein who discovered a missing link between trauma and the effects that patriarchal power structures have had on certain groups of people all throughout history up until the present day. Her life experience, in addition to research, have led Rein to develop a deeper understanding of the ways in which men and women are experiencing symptoms of trauma and stress that have been genetically passed down from previously oppressed generations.

What makes the discovery of this disorder significant is that it provides women with an answer to the stresses and trauma we feel but cannot explain or overcome. After being admitted to the ER with stroke-like symptoms one afternoon, when Rein noticed the left side of her body and face going numb, she was baffled to learn from her doctors that the results of her tests revealed that her stroke-like symptoms were caused by stress. Rein was then left to figure out what exactly she did for her clients in order for them to be able to step into the fullness of themselves that she was unable to do for herself. "What started seeping through the tears was the realization that I checked all the boxes that society told me I needed to feel happy and fulfilled, but I didn't feel happy or fulfilled and I didn't feel unhappy either. I didn't feel much of anything at all, not even stress," she stated.

Photo Courtesy of Dr. Valerie Rein

This raised the question for Rein as to what sort of hidden traumas women are suppressing without having any awareness of its presence. In her evaluation of her healing methodology, Rein realized that she was using mind, body and trauma healing tools with her clients because, while they had never experienced a traumatic event, they were showing the tell-tale symptoms of trauma which are described as a disconnect from parts of ourselves, body and emotions. In addition to her personal evaluation, research at the time had revealed that traumatic experiences are, in fact, passed down genetically throughout generations. This was Rein's lightbulb moment. The answer to a very real problem that she, and all women, have been experiencing is intergenerational trauma as a result of oppression formed under the patriarchy.

Although Rein's discovery would undoubtably change the way women experience and understand stress, it was crucial that she first broaden the definition of trauma not with the intention of catering to PSD, but to better identify the ways in which trauma presents itself in the current generation. When studying psychology from the books and diagnostic manuals written exclusively by white men, trauma was narrowly defined as a life-threatening experience. By that definition, not many people fit the bill despite showing trauma-like symptoms such as disconnections from parts of their body, emotions and self-expression. However, as the field of psychology has expanded, more voices have been joining the conversations and expanding the definition of trauma based on their lived experience. "I have broadened the definition to say that any experience that makes us feel unsafe psychically or emotionally can be traumatic," stated Rein. By redefining trauma, people across the gender spectrum are able to find validation in their experiences and begin their journey to healing these traumas not just for ourselves, but for future generations.

While PSD is not experienced by one particular gender, as women who have been one of the most historically disadvantaged and oppressed groups, we have inherited survival instructions that express themselves differently for different women. For some women, this means their nervous systems freeze when faced with something that has been historically dangerous for women such as stepping into their power, speaking out, being visible or making a lot of money. Then there are women who go into fight or flight mode. Although they are able to stand in the spotlight, they pay a high price for it when their nervous system begins to work in a constant state of hyper vigilance in order to keep them safe. These women often find themselves having trouble with anxiety, intimacy, sleeping or relaxing without a glass of wine or a pill. Because of this, adrenaline fatigue has become an epidemic among high achieving women that is resulting in heightened levels of stress and anxiety.

"For the first time, it makes sense that we are not broken or making this up, and we have gained this understanding by looking through the lens of a shared trauma. All of these things have been either forbidden or impossible for women. A woman's power has always been a punishable offense throughout history," stated Rein.

Although the idea of having a disorder may be scary to some and even potentially contribute to a victim mentality, Rein wants people to be empowered by PSD and to see it as a diagnosis meant to validate your experience by giving it a name, making it real and giving you a means to heal yourself. "There are still experiences in our lives that are triggering PSD and the more layers we heal, the more power we claim, the more resilience we have and more ability we have in staying plugged into our power and happiness. These triggers affect us less and less the more we heal," emphasized Rein. While the task of breaking intergenerational transmission of trauma seems intimidating, the author has flipped the negative approach to the healing journey from a game of survival to the game of how good can it get.

In her new book, Patriarchy Stress Disorder: The Invisible Barrier to Women's Happiness and Fulfillment, Rein details an easy system for healing that includes the necessary tools she has sourced over 20 years on her healing exploration with the pioneers of mind, body and trauma resolution. Her 5-step system serves to help "Jailbreakers" escape the inner prison of PSD and other hidden trauma through the process of Waking Up in Prison, Meeting the Prison Guards, Turning the Prison Guards into Body Guards, Digging the Tunnel to Freedom and Savoring Freedom. Readers can also find free tools on Rein's website to help aid in their healing journey and exploration.

"I think of the book coming out as the birth of a movement. Healing is not women against men– it's women, men and people across the gender spectrum, coming together in a shared understanding that we all have trauma and we can all heal."