Tantejoan here, filling in for our Drugstore Deals Diva, Gigi. Yes, I know you were expecting to be entertained and enchanted by Gigi’s amazing ability to divine the very best that her pathetic local CVS calls a cosmetics aisle – teeth marks on the lipstick wrapper indeed! I was, too. But Gigi is otherwise occupied, and I’ll tell you why. She is so funny, so witty, so darned appealing that Conan O’Brien, recently transplated to the Left Coast for The Tonight Show, begged her to help him write his monologue for Thursday night. So I’m left to pinch-hit for our own Star.
Now thinking about Conan (and hoping he has not shanghaied Gigi for good), I naturally thought of sunscreen, and not just any sunscreen, but sunscreen for the active, athletic consumer. Why? Well, Conan, being the whitest white man in America, is newly resident in Los Angeles, where sun, fitness and looking good are practically the cornerstones of civic pride. In fact, I believe in Beverly Hills there is a weigh-in station where the police deny entrance to anyone with a BMI above 24. Or is that a DUI? But surely Conan, as anyone who has watched those promos of him running the entire breadth of our country as he powered on toward his new home can attest, is in great shape. Yes, he’s still in his New York City skinny suit, but until his new tennis togs arrive, this man is L.A. based and in serious need of protection.
I am, too, even though I’m not planning to run across country anytime soon. Although I’m just going as far as the Jersey Shore to spend a week with my sister, my fish-belly white skin (under my fake tan, of course) will crave the best protection money can buy. The only trouble is, I am what my British pals would call skint. Broke. Light in the pocketbook. I’m not necessarily in the market for the Rolls Royce of sunscreen, but I want a good, serviceable, non-paraben, fragrance-free, alcohol-free, easy to apply product that will work on my body and my face. For less than $10. In short, I want it all. And really, my friends, I want it all for you, too.
My CVS not being as stripped-down as Gigi’s I repaired there to examine my options. I checked out all the usual suspects, los Banana Boat, el Coppertone, house brands and some weird names like Blue Lizard and Ocean Potion, but then my eye lighted on a range of bottles, tubes and sprays totally unfamiliar and yet somehow enticing. I was on a mission to find a good, economical sunscreen, and here was… Mission Skincare. I ran back home to do some research and this is what their web site said:
One thing that sets the great athletes apart from the rest is that they make fewer compromises. So MISSION’s skincare scientists worked with some of the world’s greatest athletes to create a sunscreen that offers sweatproof and waterproof, broad-spectrum SPF 30+ protection in a convenient, fast-drying spray. Its vitamin-enriched, preservative and paraben-free formula also makes it a perfect sunscreen for casual, everyday use.
* Broad-Spectrum SPF 30+ UVA/UVB Protection
* Fast-Drying Formula
* Alcohol Free
* Non-Sticky, Hydrating Spray
* Fragrance Free
* Preservative/Paraben Free
* Net Wt. 3.4 fl. oz. (100 mL)
This is one of a full line of products – some might say too full, if my headache after reading the entire list is any judge – that was developed for people who need to be out in the sun while engaging in vigorous exercise. Volleyball players, joggers, marathoners, race car drivers, tennis players – whoa, Nellie! This product’s spokesperson is Serena Freakin’ Williams. And a bunch of other endorsers that I’m sure would be famous to me if I followed their sports. Surely I, whose most strenuous form of exercise is competitive shopping, could entrust my epidermis to dun-dun-dun-dun dun DUN – Mission Skincare? Especially since the Fast-Drying Sunscreen was $8.99.
Reader, I bought it. And since walking around Manhattan, with all its glass, high-rise office buildings produce plenty of refracted sunlight and glare I have been wearing it daily for the past week. I can report that this SPF30+ formula sprays on like a dry oil, and is quickly absorbed, leaving a nice sheen but no greasy residue. It has no discernable odor. It can be applied to the palms and then patted onto the face without disturbing my mineral makeup or blusher (I did not try rubbing it in because, well, I’m not a complete idiot.) The alcohol-free formula did not irritate my skin, or cause me to break out. Most important, of course, is that it protected me from the sun’s rays, as I could tell from a small test patch I left on one forearm. So while I was only looking for one product, I am fairly certain I will go back and buy their Anti-Sting SPF 30+ Face Stick for that beach trip, the better to protect my nose. That’s the one piece of my total acreage that never gets sheltered by hat, sunglasses, cover-up or beach chair canopy.
So when Gigi gets back from helping Conan be funny, I’m going to show her this column and suggest she send it to him. Because you just know that if he is reading Meg’s, he is not only in touch with his feminine side, he also knows a good Drugstore Deal. And so do we.
Who else loved that this “Mission” cost them under $10 and they could take a trip in any sunny locale with it?