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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Do 2020 Presidential Candidates Still Have Rules to Play By?

Not too many years ago, my advice to political candidates would have been pretty simple: "Don't do or say anything stupid." But the last few elections have rendered that advice outdated.

When Barack Obama referred to his grandmother as a "typical white woman" during the 2008 campaign, for example, many people thought it would cost him the election -- and once upon a time, it probably would have. But his supporters were focused on the values and positions he professed, and they weren't going to let one unwise comment distract them. Candidate Obama didn't even get much pushback for saying, "We're five days away from fundamentally transforming the United States of America." That statement should have given even his most ardent supporters pause, but it didn't. It was in line with everything Obama had previously said, and it was what his supporters wanted to hear.

2016: What rules?

Fast forward to 2016, and Donald Trump didn't just ignore traditional norms, he almost seemed to relish violating them. Who would have ever dreamed we'd elect a man who talked openly about grabbing women by the **** and who was constantly blasting out crazy-sounding Tweets? But Trump did get elected. Why? Some people believe it was because Americans finally felt like they had permission to show their bigotry. Others think Obama had pushed things so far to the left that right-wing voters were more interested in dragging public policy back toward the middle than in what Trump was Tweeting.

Another theory is that Trump's lewd, crude, and socially unacceptable behavior was deliberately designed to make Democrats feel comfortable campaigning on policies that were far further to the left than they ever would have attempted before. Why? Because they were sure America would never elect someone who acted like Trump. If that theory is right, and Democrats took the bait, Trump's "digital policies" served him well.

And although Trump's brash style drew the most handlines, he wasn't the only one who seemed to have forgotten the, "Don't do or say anything stupid," rule. Hillary Clinton also made news when she made a "basket of deplorables" comment at a private fundraiser, but it leaked out, and it dogged her for the rest of the election cycle.

And that's where we need to start our discussion. Now that all the old rules about candidate behavior have been blown away, do presidential candidates even need digital policies?

Yes, they do. More than ever, in my opinion. Let me tell you why.

Digital policies for 2020 and beyond

While the 2016 election tossed traditional rules about political campaigns to the trash heap, that doesn't mean you can do anything you want. Even if it's just for the sake of consistency, candidates need digital policies for their own campaigns, regardless of what anybody else is doing. Here are some important things to consider.

Align your digital policies with your campaign strategy

Aside from all the accompanying bells and whistles, why do you want to be president? What ideological beliefs are driving you? If you were to become president, what would you want your legacy to be? Once you've answered those questions honestly, you can develop your campaign strategy. Only then can you develop digital policies that are in alignment with the overall purpose -- the "Why?" -- of your campaign:

  • If part of your campaign strategy, for example, is to position yourself as someone who's above the fray of the nastiness of modern politics, then one of your digital policies should be that your campaign will never post or share anything that attacks another candidate on a personal level. Attacks will be targeted only at the policy level.
  • While it's not something I would recommend, if your campaign strategy is to depict the other side as "deplorables," then one of your digital policies should be to post and share every post, meme, image, etc. that supports your claim.
  • If a central piece of your platform is that detaining would-be refugees at the border is inhumane, then your digital policies should state that you will never say, post, or share anything that contradicts that belief, even if Trump plans to relocate some of them to your own city. Complaining that such a move would put too big a strain on local resources -- even if true -- would be making an argument for the other side. Don't do it.
  • Don't be too quick to share posts or Tweets from supporters. If it's a text post, read all of it to make sure there's not something in there that would reflect negatively on you. And examine images closely to make sure there's not a small detail that someone may notice.
  • Decide what your campaign's voice and tone will be. When you send out emails asking for donations, will you address the recipient as "friend" and stress the urgency of donating so you can continue to fight for them? Or will you personalize each email and use a more low-key, collaborative approach?

Those are just a few examples. The takeaway is that your online behavior should always support your campaign strategy. While you could probably get away with posting or sharing something that seems mean or "unpresidential," posting something that contradicts who you say you are could be deadly to your campaign. Trust me on this -- if there are inconsistencies, Twitter will find them and broadcast them to the world. And you'll have to waste valuable time, resources, and public trust to explain those inconsistencies away.

Remember that the most common-sense digital policies still apply

The 2016 election didn't abolish all of the rules. Some still apply and should definitely be included in your digital policies:

  1. Claim every domain you can think of that a supporter might type into a search engine. Jeb Bush not claiming www.jebbush.com (the official campaign domain was www.jeb2016.com) was a rookie mistake, and he deserved to have his supporters redirected to Trump's site.
  2. Choose your campaign's Twitter handle wisely. It should be obvious, not clever or cutesy. In addition, consider creating accounts with possible variations of the Twitter handle you chose so that no one else can use them.
  3. Give the same care to selecting hashtags. When considering a hashtag, conduct a search to understand its current use -- it might not be what you think! When making up new hashtags, try to avoid anything that could be hijacked for a different purpose -- one that might end up embarrassing you.
  4. Make sure that anyone authorized to Tweet, post, etc., on your behalf has a copy of your digital policies and understands the reasons behind them. (People are more likely to follow a rule if they understand why it's important.)
  5. Decide what you'll do if you make an online faux pas that starts a firestorm. What's your emergency plan?
  6. Consider sending an email to supporters who sign up on your website, thanking them for their support and suggesting ways (based on digital policies) they can help your messaging efforts. If you let them know how they can best help you, most should be happy to comply. It's a small ask that could prevent you from having to publicly disavow an ardent supporter.
  7. Make sure you're compliant with all applicable regulations: campaign finance, accessibility, privacy, etc. Adopt a double opt-in policy, so that users who sign up for your newsletter or email list through your website have to confirm by clicking on a link in an email. (And make sure your email template provides an easy way for people to unsubscribe.)
  8. Few people thought 2016 would end the way it did. And there's no way to predict quite yet what forces will shape the 2020 election. Careful tracking of your messaging (likes, shares, comments, etc.) will tell you if you're on track or if public opinion has shifted yet again. If so, your messaging needs to shift with it. Ideally, one person should be responsible for monitoring reaction to the campaign's messaging and for raising a red flag if reactions aren't what was expected.

Thankfully, the world hasn't completely lost its marbles

Whatever the outcome of the election may be, candidates now face a situation where long-standing rules of behavior no longer apply. You now have to make your own rules -- your own digital policies. You can't make assumptions about what the voting public will or won't accept. You can't assume that "They'll never vote for someone who acts like that"; neither can you assume, "Oh, I can get away with that, too." So do it right from the beginning. Because in this election, I predict that sound digital policies combined with authenticity will be your best friend.