Consider this post as one giant #FBF (#FlashBackFriday, if you will) to a sunny Labor Day Weekend.
People seem to think that the non-chalky, non-white-cast-leaving, non-thick, non-greasy sunscreen is like a mythical creature. A unicorn. I was doing some finger-wagging over the summer, scolding some very browned Asian teenage boys for not wearing sunscreen during water polo practice, and they complained that sunscreen was too thick, too greasy, and they’d rather tan than wear it. Besides, laziness/they can’t think far ahead enough to even comprehend what sun damage can do/boys will be boys.
But guys, this unicorn has been tamed! The days of white-cast-leaving, thick, greasy sunscreen have long been over! The summer before this last summer, I was ready to call it quits with Consonant’s Perfect Sunscreen. Indeed, according to its name, I thought it was perfect. I thought it was light, unoffensive, and provided sun protection without making my face a shade lighter or adding an extra layer of thickness.
And then this past summer, I took a stab at Pratima’s Neem Rose Sunscreen with SPF 30 without sampling beforehand, it having been long on my wish list since it was incepted into my mind how good it was (could have sworn I saw it from NMDL, but can’t find the source) and seeing it recommended by other #greenbbloggers like Sarita of Edible Facial and Nancy of Glossed in Brooklyn. And unfortunately I have to revise my previous statement. After emptying this bottle, I went back to a fresh bottle of Perfect Sunscreen and realized actually how much lighter Pratima’s Neem Rose Sunscreen was. This sunscreen is truly the perfect, perfect sunscreen.
There are several winning points.
First, towards the end of the summer, my mother began borrowing my sunscreen and eventually requested I help her purchase her own + backups and additionally the body sunscreen. My mother has graciously and lovingly hopped aboard the #greenbeauty train to the realm of green skincare. She is a picky, picky woman with high expectations who still has not liked any green foundation I have given her to try and yet, she requested this sunscreen. #MomApproved
Second, this sunscreen has an extremely light texture that even rivals the texture of some moisturizers. This was the first thing I realized after going back to Consonant’s sunscreen–Consonant’s sunscreen made Pratima’s feel like a cloud! Pratima’s sunscreen does not feel like the stereotypical, villainous sunscreen–it feels like a moisturizer. And even lighter than cream moisturizers like Pai’s Geranium and Thistle Cream. A pump and a half over my moisturizing routine patted in with my fingers feels unnoticeable. Also I never got any weird pilling effects after applying foundation or breakouts while using this sunscreen.
Stunning moisturizer-like texture aside, while this never left me feeling any drier or tighter (ironically have had this tendency with some moisturizers), I always used an oil or oil + cream under this to provide my face with ample moisture. Also to be noted is that the sunscreen comes in a food grade container + a pump which conveniently dispenses the product up until the very end, where you may need to unscrew the cap to get out the last bits.
Third, a non-offensive scent. I have tried some of Pratima’s other skincare (Pearl Cream) and bodycare (Vata Body Oil) offerings through sample with orders and noticed the scents of those products came off pretty strong. The sunscreen, however, smells lightly of rose–which is a twofold benefit, I think: a therapeutic scent with regenerative and harmonizing effects. Also you’d never guess that the stinky yet powerfully antibacterial/fungal/everything bad and healing neem would be hiding in the folds.
Fourth, the complete absence of any white cast. None. Nada. You’ll forget that you’ve applied it.
Lastly, I’ve never sunburned where I have applied it and once–just once–I sunburned in the one place where I forgot to apply it. On a typical day, I will apply sunscreen under my makeup once, and then cautiously measure my time out in the sun and take preventative measures (hiding in the shade, wearing a hat, etc.) On said Labor Day weekend, I dutifully skipped makeup in order to reapply every two hours on my face and body. Except I forgot my lower legs, which I carelessly dangled outside the protective shady sphere of the umbrella. The result: sad sunburned calves and an otherwise impeccably unsunburned body. The lesson: practice safe sun!
A+ performance aside, a look at the surprisingly simple list of ingredients that make this sunscreen a winner. Water, okay. Non-nano zinc oxide–a physical sun blocker. Organic extracts of neem (anti-bad, anti-acne), brahmi (aka gotu kola aka vitamin C, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant land), shatavari (antioxidants, antidepressant, antibacterial, toning) and licorice (healing, anti-inflammatory)–very nice. And add rose, also therapeutic and healing.
All in all, a soothing, inflammatory, anti-bad, and antioxidant-ful combination of ingredients that result in a silky sunscreen that given blind, you would never guess to be a sunscreen due to its wonderfully light texture that also performs.
tl;dr Truly a perfect sunscreen with a texture lighter than even some moisturizers, non-offensive scent, no white cast, and no sunburns. Also, mom-approved.
Have you tried this sunscreen? What are your thoughts? Even though the weather is getting chillier, are you still slathering up the SPF? (I am). If so, what have you been using?
Ingredients: IONIZED WATER, NON-NANO MICRONIZED ZINC OXIDE 18.6%, ORGANIC EXTRACTS OF NEEM, BRAHMI, SHATAVARI, LICORICE, VITAMIN E, LECITHIN, ORGANIC ESSENTIAL OIL OF ROSE, XANTHAN GUM.
Disclaimer: I’ve purchased this sunscreen myself at least once or twice, and I helped my mom purchase several for herself and my sister all from pratimaskincare.com. Shipping costs will make you sad. But they worth the product, so stock up.
Singla, Ramit, and Vikas Jaitak. “Shatavari (Asparagus Racemosus Wild): A Review On Its Cultivation, Morphology, Phytochemistry And Pharmacological Importance.” International Journal Of Pharmacy & Life Sciences 5.3 (2014): 742-757. Academic Search Complete. Web. 21 Nov. 2014.
Takhshid, M. A., Mehrabani, D., Ai, J., & Zarepoor, M. (2012). The healing effect of licorice extract in acetic acid-induced ulcerative colitis in rat model. Comparative Clinical Pathology, 21(6), 1139-1144. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00580-011-1249-9