Shade sunscreen logo

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Who is ShadeTM suitable for?


All skin types, of all ages.


Many people with sensitive skin have reported that Shade™ is the only sunscreen they have been able to use, and many of our customers like to use Shade™ daily to prevent sun and wind damage in winter, and do so without finding it dries their skin or makes it oilier.

How should I apply it?


If it’s cold and quite firm, rub it vigorously with warm fingertips to make it softer, or scoop some out of the tin and warm it between your hands, then apply generously and then reapply regularly, particularly after exposure to water or after sweating.

What constitutes 'Apply Generously'?


'Applying generously' is the general guideline for sunscreens, however, ShadeTM is no normal sunscreen. Compared to bottled high street lotions, it is thick and balmy, and unlike chemical sunscreens its mode of action is to sit on the skin and reflect the rays, rather than absorb into the skin like chemical formuals. The thickness of ShadeTM means you will probably apply less in volume than you would regular sunscreens, but just be aware that it forms a barrier on your skin and will need topping up regularly. You want to be able to clearly see a thin sheen of zinc oxide on your skin, to be sure you are adequately protected on each application.


Be aware that putting an inadaquate amount of sunscreen on effectively square-roots the SPF, so an SPF50 is rendered an SPF7, SPF25 is rendered an SPF5!!

How does Sun Protection Factor (SPF) actually work?


The '25' in SPF25 means that you are approximately protected for 25 times the length of time it would normally take you to burn, under the same environmental conditions, without any protection whatsoever.


To work out percentage of efficacy, see how may times 25 goes into 100, then take that number away from 100 and you have a percentage of efficacy at protecting from UVB rays. In the case of SPF25, itmeans that the protection is 96% - that also means that 4% of rays are still reaching the skin.


Unlike many chemical sunscreens, Shade™ does not contain burn inhibitors which switch off the burning sensation. If you feel you are beginning burn, it's your body's warning that you have been exposed for too long, and the sensible approach is to cover up by wearing clothing or move out of the sun altogether. Applying more sunscreen only ensures you are still covered for the original 25x timeframe - it does not extend the amount of time you can stay in the sun - those 4% of rays are still doing their damage. It's important that you listen to your body and its signals - the danger of sunscreens that contain burn inhibitors is that the damage is still being done, but you just can't feel it - a bit like taking painkillers that mask the pain - ignoring the body's messages that there is a problem does not resolve the problem!

Does ShadeTM protect against UVA as well as UVB?


Yes, Shade™ offers broad spectrum protection, the SPF25 covers the UVB and the UVA emblem on the bottom label refers to the UVA protection.

 

The UVA Star rating system can no longer be used by sunscreen manufacturers such as ourselves because it is trademarked by Boots the Chemists and is only allowed to be used by certain brands Boots sell and Boots' own brands, therefore we cannot apply a star rating based on this testing system. However, the UVAPF Mean in the SO24443:2012 test conducted on Shade™ came in at 24.77, giving it a PA++++ UVA grading, and if we were to be able to use the star system it would come out at 4/5 stars.

Does ShadeTM leave a white cast on the skin?


Shade™ can leave a white cast on the skin, this is the mineral non-nano zinc oxide sitting on the skin, and it's the active ingredient that protects you from the UVA & UVB rays. When you see a white cast on your skin don't dismay, be pleased! You can see that not only are you physically helping to protect yourself from the dangerous rays, you can rest assured we are only using non-nano particles of zinc oxide, which is why they sit on the skin as a physical barrier and don't absorb into the skin and the bloodstream - the very safest form of active ingredient for sunscreens. When it comes to doing something recognised as dangerous, such as exposing yourself to strong sun, we believe it's important to put safety above vanity...

Why do you only make an SPF25?


We only make an SPF25 because the recommended ideal SPF is between 15 and 30. As SPF25 protects you from 96% of the sun's harmful UVB rays which cause burning, we believe that users will not be as complacent as they would be about using a high SPF, and if you need it to be a really super sunblock lay it on thick. Also, very high SPF is only achieveable with chemical active ingredients, something we're tryng to avoid. We also believe some sun is good for your skin, triggering the synthesis of Vitamin D, which is vital for optimum health.

 

We are inclined to agree with the Environmental Working Group about the pitfalls of high SPF products. You can read them here.


In some situations however, SPF25 is simply not strong enough, such as at high altitude where the atmosphere is thinner allowing more UV rays to reach you, and in snowy conditions where there is a much higher level of reflection (up to 80% more). In these situations, cover up as much as possible and lay your Shade™ on thick, or find an alternative high SPF if you cannot keep adequately covered.

How can I trust that it's a really effective sunscreen?


Test results confirm that not only is ShadeTM an effective broad spectrum sunscreen which helps protect against UVA radiation which can penetrate deep into the skin and cause ageing, it is also an effective SPF25, which blocks up to 96% of the UVB rays which cause burning. We believe it’s better to use an SPF in the range of 15 - 30, because your burning mechanism is your early warning system which is really best not switched off! SPF25 covers 96%, SPF50 covers only 2% more at 98% and SPF100 covers only 99%...by offering only SPF25, we hope people will use ShadeTM responsibly, and not be complacent about the dangers of sun exposure. Higher SPFs we believe can lead us into a false sense of security. Please read our blog post 'A Word of Warning about Natural Sunscreens', and this Excellent Article, 'Can Sunscreen Ingredients Increase Your Risk of Cancer?' which highlights all the issues with using sunscreen to prevent skin cancer.

 

A Sun Protection Factor (SPF) of 25 does not mean it is half the strength of an SPF 50 – it means you can remain exposed to sun with it adequately applied for up to 25 times the length of time it would normally take you to burn in the same environmental conditions you would if you did not apply any sunscreen protection.

 

When many of the chemical ingredients found in mainstream high-street sunscreens have been found to be carcinogenic in their own right, it makes sense to choose a sunscreen which only uses the most basic, nourishing skin-protecting natural ingredients. This eliminates the risk of adverse reactions, chemical absorption through the skin into the bloodstream, and the highly undesirable ‘switching off’ of your early warning signals. Of all the radiation dispersing and adsorbing ingredients available to sunscreen manufacturers, we have opted for the most naturally-occurring one which happens to be the only one which proves offer the broadest protection available – the mineral Zinc Oxide.

 

The non-nano zinc oxide we have chosen for Shade™ is able to protect against both UVA and UVB ultraviolet light and is a physical UV blocker being capable of scattering solar radiation and is excellent for those who are sensitive to the sun.

What tests has it undergone?


Stability testing, microbiology testing, broad spectrum sunscreen testing of effectiveness against UVA & UVB rays, and SPF validation tests. All tests conducted to EU standards by Alba Science of Edinburgh.

 

  • ISO24443 In vitro Broad Spectrum Protection.
  • ISO 24444 In vivo with 13 live subjects. A Cosmetic Study to Determine the In-Vivo Sun Protection Factor of a Sunscreen Formulation.
  • Cosmetic Product Safety Data Analysis, conducted by Luciano Molinaro BSc Forensic Science & Investigative Analysis (Hons) (Kingston University), Forensic Chemistry and Trace Analysis, Analytical Methods in Forensic Science (Kingston University).
  • Accelerated Stability Test

 

ShadeTM is listed on the Cosmetic Products Notification Portal (CPNP), as per EU requirements.

Is Shade™ tested on animals?


No way! Absolutely not! Only human volunteers have taken part in Shade™ testing, unless you consider our founder and family to be guinea pigs...! As an anti-vivisectionist, animal lover and a vegan, our founder would never allow it, and besides it's illegal to test cosmetics on animals in the UK. We're proud to display the 'not tested on animals' icon on our labels. So, we hear you ask, if she's vegan, why has she allowed beeswax in the formula? The answer is that she only became vegan five years ago, a couple of years after Shade™ was originally formulated. Since then we have been working on the development of a vegan formula, but beeswax is a hard wax to mimic with very few ingredients. We are getting closer though, so please watch this space.

So what's so bad about commercial, chemical-based, sunscreens?


Where to start? How about digging around in the back of your bathroom cabinet, and pulling out last year's 1/3 full tube with the crusty, gunky lid that won't close anymore, and taking a look at the ingredients?

 

The first question you need to ask yourself is ...how do you even pronounce that? Exactly. These manmade chemicals are not something we as humans have evolved with, like 'nut' or 'oil'. They are incredibly new to us on the evolutionary scale, and if you take the time to type some of those ingredients into your search bar on your browser and add 'health risks' then you will discover for yourself why many people are beginning to question why they're relying on this stuff to try and prevent skin cancer. The Environmental Working Group's Sunscreen Guide is a great place to start to learn more about the ingredients in sunscreens.

 

Also, many chemical sunscreens have ingredients which switch off the burning mechanism. That's all well and good, but we burn for a reason - it's our skin's early warning system telling us we've had too much time in the sun and we need to do something about it. It's easy to avoid burning if you reapply your sunscreen regularly, and at the height of the sun's strength, wear suitable clothing to cover up, but when your skin has had enough, it will start to redden, that's when to admit enough is enough and move out of the sun. We'd love you to read more about this on our blog post, 'A Word of Warning About Natural Sunscreens' before switching from a to a mineral chemical formula!

 

All that's without mentioning the plastic packaging, which is choking our beautiful oceans and killing our marine life...

What is Shade’s shelf life?


Once opened use within 12 months, otherwise it has a 3-year shelf life.

 

Why is it packed in a tin and not a bottle or a tube like other sunscreens?

Firstly, it's not plastic, and we hate plastic. So much plastic waste is found discarded on our shorelines it's shameful. Secondly, it can be reused for anything you want it to be reused for, thirdly, you can use up every last bit of its contents because you can easily get at it - even if it's not sunny, if the expiration date is looming, and there's no sun in sight, just use up the cream for its wonderful moisturising properties. It's great if you have itchy skin or patches, insect bites or stings etc. and even as a fantastic lip salve in winter, it's also an excellent aftersun. Lastly, if you can't find any further use for the tin you can recycle it...and don't worry, unless you let it get to over 64 degrees, it won't melt, it'll just soften, so it won't leak from the tin!


Oh...and it looks funky. :o)

Interested in buying ShadeTM?

Can I buy ShadeTM in shops yet?


Yes, we have over 200 independent retailers selling Shade™ around the UK in their shops with more coming on board each week, which you can find on our store locator map here, also in Norway, Iceland and Bermuda. We also have an ever growing list of zero waste and pastic free online retailers selling Shade™ if you'd like to support them.

 

I have another question that isn't answered here ...

Then please contact us and we'll do our utmost to answer it.

As featured in The Green Parent Magazine

CONNECT

Read our blog post 'A Word of Warning About Natural Sunscreens' before switching from a chemical formula!

NEWSLETTER

Keep yourself updated about new natural, effective and non-toxic products.

© 2014 - 2020 Not the Norm Ltd. All Rights Reserved.