Do Powder Sunscreens Work as Well the Liquid Versions?

How do powder sunscreens compare to traditional sunscreens? The Doctors investigate whether you can skip the liquid in favor of the powder.

Dermatologist Dr. Sonia Batra joins the panel to put the powder version to the test against the liquid version. With the use of a powerful camera, the VISIA Complexion Analysis System, Dr. Batra was able to photograph each of our participants without sunscreen, with just the powder sunscreen and lastly with liquid sunscreen. The camera is able to test how much UV protection someone is receiving on their skin. The darker the image, the more protection your are getting.

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According to the VISIA results, the powder sunscreen appeared to provide very little protection from UV light compared to the results of the liquid application.



Dr. Batra warns that most of us are not putting on enough sunscreen, even when using the liquid type. She shares that studies show that people only apply 25 to 50 percent of what they should be applying to achieve the level of SPF listed on the label.

The difference in the powder and liquid is so great, that according to one study you would need to apply 14 times the amount of powder to actually achieve the listed SPF.

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Due to so many of us not using enough protection, Dr. Batra recommends doubling the amount of liquid sunscreen in your hand when applying, in hopes of actually getting the correct amount on your skin. She also says the best approach is to layer the powder version on top of the liquid to achieve the greatest results.

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Playing Dermatologist Sonia Batra's Top Sunscreen Tips