The Complete Guide to SPF, Mineral Sunscreen and How To Add SPF To Your Skincare Routine

Posted by Patricia Asmar on

Why is sunscreen so important, and what’s the difference between mineral and chemical sunscreens, anyways?

What is SPF?

SPF, or sun protection factor, is a measure of the degree to which a sunscreen protects against UV rays. This type of radiation is responsible for sunburns and long-term skin damage.

The SPF number on a bottle of sunscreen gives you some idea as to how effective it will protect you from the sun’s rays. The higher the number, the more protection you will get.

Many people believe that SPF 15 is enough to protect them from harm, but this number only accounts for 93% of the sun's harmful UV rays. A sunscreen with an SPF greater than 30 will provide 97% protection.

Sunscreen SPF rating the complete guide to SPF the facial room coola eminence organics

Mineral Sunscreen vs Chemical Sunscreen

How Do Chemical and Mineral Sunscreens Work?

chemical vs mineral sunscreen the complete guide to spf the facial room eminence organics coola

Chemical and mineral sunscreens shield your skin from the harmful effects of the sun’s UV rays in very different ways.

Mineral sunscreen contains ingredients like zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, which contain small particles that sit on the surface of the skin to physically prevent UV rays from reaching the skin. Mineral sunscreens are all broad spectrum, protecting the skin from both UVA and UVB rays.

Chemical sunscreens allow UV rays to be absorbed by the skin where the chemicals in the sunscreen create a chemical reaction that converts UV rays into heat, which then dissipates from the skin. Unless specifically marked as “broad spectrum”, chemical sunscreen will only protect the skin from UVB rays.


3 Benefits of Mineral Sunscreen

The complete guide to SPF benefits of mineral sunscreen the facial room coola

  1. Reef-friendly

Mineral sunscreens are better for the environment. Many vacation hot spots – like Hawaii – now require all ocean-goers to apply only reef-safe mineral sunscreen. Chemical sunscreen contains ingredients that disrupts coral reproduction, causes coral bleaching and damages coral DNA, causing irreparable harm to delicate ocean ecosystems.


  1. Hypo-allergenic, non-comedogenic and great for sensitive skin

This is because the ingredients in mineral sunscreen sit on top of the skin rather than being absorbed into it, so those with sensitive skin are less likely to have irritation. For those prone to blemishes and breakouts, mineral sunscreen is free of pore-clogging silicone.


  1. Mineral SPF works immediately

No need to wait for the SPF to absorb into your skin to be effective – mineral sunscreen starts working immediately upon application because the ingredients act as a barrier between the skin and the sun’s harmful rays.

Top SPF Products According Our Skincare Expert

the complete guide to spf skincare consultations patricia asmar

Patricia Asmar is the owner and founder of The Facial Room, and is a C.I.D.E.S.C.O. trained and internationally certified esthetician with over 27 years of knowledge and experience in the spa industry. 

Patricia has hand selected four of her current favourite SPF products. You’ll see they all have one thing in common: All are mineral SPF products.

the complete guide to spf COOLA Refreshing Water Cream Organic Face Sunscreen SPF 50 the facial room

NEW! COOLA Refreshing Water Cream Organic Face Sunscreen SPF 50
Drench your skin! Infused with hydration-boosting hyaluronic acid and refreshing coconut water, this organic water cream delivers a dewy surge of lightweight moisture and powerful SPF 50 protection. Powered by plant-derived BlueScreen™ Digital De-Stress™ technology, this cutting-edge cream also helps mitigate the effects of High Energy Visible light (including blue light from digital devices), infrared light, and pollution to help guard you from modern day skin stressors.

the complete guide to spf COOLA Classic Organic Sunscreen Stick SPF 30 - Tropical Coconut the facial room

NEW! COOLA Classic Organic Sunscreen Stick SPF 30 - Tropical Coconut
Twist, swipe, and go! This perfectly portable organic sunscreen stick gives you water-resistant, broad spectrum UVA/UVB protection whenever you need it. Supercharged with antioxidant-rich Plant Protection® complex, this naturally scented Tropical Coconut stick helps fight free radicals while nourishing your skin. The best part – this Farm to Face® formula is strong enough for long active days in the sun, but still light enough for everyday use.

the complete guide to spf Eminence Organics Sun Defense Minerals SPF 30  the facial room

Eminence Organics Sun Defense Minerals SPF 30 Patricia’s long time favourite – she calls it her “magic eraser”!
These hypoallergenic, non pore clogging natural minerals provide water-resistant SPF 30 sun protection combined with the skin tone-evening effects of a mineral foundation. They are excellent for post-treatment use, especially on red or blotchy skin. Darker shades can be used as a bronzer. Pro-tip: No hat in sight? Brush a small amount of the Sun Defense Minerals in your hair part to protect your scalp!

the complete guide to spf Eminence Organics Lilikoi Mineral Defense Sport Sunscreen SPF 30 the facial room

Eminence Organics Lilikoi Mineral Defense Sport Sunscreen SPF 30
An easy-to-apply sport formulation for face and body, this SPF 30 mineral sunscreen is non-greasy and water-resistant for up to 40 minutes. Highly effective for outdoor activities like swimming and high-performance sports where perspiration can impact standard sunscreen efficacy, this zinc oxide sunscreen protects from head to toe.

Don’t Forget Your Lips!

the complete guide to spf COOLA liplux tinted spf lip balm the facial room

Protect your pout with one of these superior SPF lip products:

Eminence Organics Rosehip & Lemongrass Lip Balm SPF 15
Moisturize and protect dry lips with this hydrating lip balm stick. All natural SPF 15 defends dry lips against harmful UV exposure, while soothing rosehip oil relieves dryness, and rejuvenating lavender restores softness. Dry, weather-ravaged lips are perfectly moisturized and protected from future damage. 

NEW! COOLA Mineral Liplux® Organic Tinted Lip Balm Sunscreen SPF 30
Kiss dry, boring lips goodbye! Infused with organic cupuaçu butter and mongongo oil, these organic formulas also smooth and nourish to help keep lips healthy, plump, and youthful-looking. Can't decide? Layer two shades for a one-of-a-kind lip look. Available in 4 beautiful tints!


How to Add SPF to Your Skincare Routine

the complete guide to spf skincare routine the facial room

Adding an all natural mineral SPF to your daily skincare routine is easy. If you are using a product like the COOLA Refreshing Water Cream Organic Face Sunscreen, you can simply swap out your daytime moisturizer for this hydrating product.

If you’d rather keep your daily moisturizer, the Sun Defense Minerals powder is the best choice – you get mineral SPF protection plus the ability to minimize the appearance of hyperpigmentation. It can be brushed on top of your regular daily moisturizer.

If you aren’t sure how to incorporate SPF into your morning skincare routine, a complimentary skincare consultation with Patricia is the best way forward. Simply contact Patricia in one of these easy ways:

DM us on Instagram 
Send us a Facebook message

If you aren’t already using sunscreen daily, it’s time to level up your skincare routine. Protecting your skin with SPF is the #1 way to prevent premature aging and decrease the risk of developing skin cancer.

Shop our expertly curated selection of high-quality, organic and reef-safe sunscreen.

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