We had a run of spectacular weather recently, and some of it even fell on the weekend. I hung the hammock in the backyard for the first time in over a year and then, fell asleep in the blazing sunshine. My face wasn’t completely tomato red, but I was pinked up. I had forgotten the sunscreen.
I’m much better about sun protection than I was when I was a younger, California based, tan pursuing lass. Some of it’s a byproduct of moving north to Seattle, other parts of it are just that I’m considerably more aware of the damage sun can do to my skin. I got a brutal sunburn on the tops of my ears last year while on safari in Tanzania due to neglect – at least I’d been wearing a cap and didn’t burn the top of my melon or my nose.
On day two of the best weekend since last summer, I remembered to cover my face, neck and the tops of my ears with SPF 45 with some sunscreen that’s been kicking around waiting for a reason to exist. It worked, and though I fell asleep in the hammock again, I woke up half an hour later no more reddened for the, uh, effort.
NEOVA’s DNA SPF 45 damage control sunscreen is expensive stuff. It’s about $46 for a TSA approved serving (that’s three ounces). The main ingredient is zinc, but it’s transparent so you don’t get that white smeary look when you’re wearing it. It feels just a little sticky when it goes on, but that doesn’t last, and it has almost no scent, so it’s easy to forget you’ve got it on. It’s waterproof, though it never hurts to reapply every few hours if you’ve been swimming or especially active.
There’s a lot of marketing language with this product around anti-aging and DNA repair and the kind of stuff that makes us think we can reverse the effects of 20-plus years of forgetting to apply sunscreen when we go to the beach. I’d like to tell you that it made me look like I was 20 again, but no dice. I will tell you that it’s not rocket science that you should wear sunscreen and that if you spend a little more money, you get sunscreen that feels a bit nicer and doesn’t smell like plastic.