We talked about knowing your UVA to PA++++ in the Guide to Sunscreens Part 1 and now we’re here to let you know more about the different types of sunscreens and which kind is best for you!

Before you jump in and purchase any sunscreen off the shelf, you need to know the different kinds of sunscreen there are available in stores. There are two general types of sunscreen – physical and chemical ones. There are also hybrid sunscreens that contain both physical and chemical sunscreen ingredients.

Physical vs. Chemical Sunscreens

  Physical Chemical
How They Work
  • Physical sunscreens protect your skin from the sun by deflecting or blocking the sun’s rays.                                                                                                                                                 
  • Chemical sunscreens work by absorbing the sun’s rays. Some chemical filters can scatter sun rays, but still mostly just absorb them.
Other Names
  • Inorganic sunscreen
  • Organic sunscreen
  • Titanium dioxide protects against UVB rays, but not the full spectrum of UVA rays.
  • Zinc oxide protects against the entire spectrum of UVB and UVA rays. 
  • Starts protecting immediately upon application.
  • Chemical filters offer more coverage against UVA and UVB rays than physical sunscreens, but the range of protection will depend on the particular ingredient and its stability.
  • Avobenzone, for example, protects against the full spectrum UVA rays.
  • Must wait 20 minutes after application for effective sun protection.
  • Thick and opaque, may be hard to apply.
  • Tends to leave a white castor tint. 
  • Rubs off more easily and must be frequently reapplied.
  • Colorless, odorless, usually runny.
  • Can sometimes double as a makeup primer, depending on the active and the formulation.

 Credit: Skinacea

Sunscreen Bottles

#1 Sensitive skin

  • Look for sunscreens that are natural, PABA-free (para-aminobenzoic acid), oil-free, hypoallergenic and fragrance-free.
  • Mineral based sunscreens are ideal as titanium dioxide and zinc oxide stays on the skin’s surface instead of being absorbed into it.

#2 Acne-prone

  • Use lightweight, oil-free and fragrance-free sunscreens.
  • Look out got the term “non-comedogenic” as it means it won’t clog your pores.

#3 Oily skin

  • Look for sunscreens that are mineral oil-free and non-comedogenic.
  • Use water or gel based sunscreens to avoid breakouts.

#4 Dry skin:

  • Use cream-based sunscreens with extra hydrating ingredients like glycerin and aloe.
  • Avoid sunscreens with alcohol.

#5 Swimmer or enjoy outdoor sports

  • Use sunscreens that are water-resistant or waterproof sun protection.
  • Keep sunscreen away from your eyes.
  • Re-apply after you get out of the water or every 2 hours as no sunscreen is 100% water and sweat-proof.

Tips for acne-prone, oily and sensitive skin:

  • Don’t use the same sunscreen meant for your body on your face.
  • If you are using acne treatment products, apply it first, wait 20 minutes or so and then apply your sun protection over it.
  • Remember to wash your face before going to bed to prevent pores from clogging.

Credit: Sun Protection and Products Guide

Are you familiar with sunscreen jargons? If not, find out more about it in the first part of our Sunscreen Guide!

There are so many jargons when it comes to sunscreens and we know that it can be so very confusing. In this simplified, summarised and condensed all-you-need-to-know guide, we tell you the difference between UVA, UVB, SPF and PA.

When the skin feels direct sun exposure and you feel the burning sensation, in scientific terms, this means ultraviolet light is penetrating the epidermis causing the skin to react by producing melanin, aka tanning your skin. We know having that healthy glow from tanning looks great, but over time it causes just the opposite –  change in skin texture, wrinkling, age spots or worse, skin cancer. 

Guide to Sunscreens

Credit: Coola

What’s the difference between UVA and UVB rays?

Light travels in different wavelengths and there are actually UVA, UVB and UVC rays. UVC rays are absorbed by our Ozone layer while UVA and UVB rays are able to penetrate it and reach the Earth’s surface. 

Ultraviolet A or UVA

  • Long waves
  • Penetrates deep into dermis (skin’s thickest layer)
  • Damages skin collagen
  • Causes premature skin aging, wrinkles

Ultraviolet B or UVB

  • Short waves
  • Penetrates the skin surface
  • Causes sunburns

What about SPF and PA?

You’ve probably come across Sun Protection Factor (SPF) and Protection Grade (PA) when purchasing sunscreens. Here’s what it means:

Sun Protection Factor or SPF

  • Measure of sunscreen’s ability to block UVB only
  • If it takes 10 minutes for your unprotected skin to turn red, SPF 15 prevents reddening 15 times longer – around 2.5 hours
  • There is no strict regulation on how brands label their products therefore SPF 100 doesn’t mean that the sunscreen will protect you 100 times longer
  • SPF 15 filters out approximately 93% of UVB rays, SPF 30 keeps out 97% and SPF 50 blocks 98%

Protection Grade of UVA or PA

  • Japanese measurement of sun protection against UVA
  • Based on the Persistent Pigment Darkening (PPD) reaction reading at 2-4 hours of sun exposure
  • Protective level of strength from PA+ (light) to PA++++ (strong)

Remember kids, there is no safe way to tan so protect your skin from those harmful rays! Find out what type of sunscreen is for you at Part 2 of our guide!


6 Products You Must Get From The H&M Beauty Collection

31 Aug 2016 by Venetia Sng

If you missed the news, H&M will be launching their lust-worthy beauty range in Singapore this September! H&M Beauty will be available in stores along with their Autumn shades from 9th September at Orchard Building. With nothing priced more than $20 (yes even the premium range), be prepared to brave a stampede if you want to be one of the first few to get these babies. Here’s a sneak peek at what you can expect from the collection!

Make up

H&M Beauty 3

H&M Beauty 2

From brows to lips, you name it and they have it. We were so impressed by their extensive range of makeup, we thought that we died and went to makeup heaven when we first stepped into H&M’s showroom for the media preview. 

Body care

H&M Beauty 1

H&M Beauty 6

With the wide array of products such as hand cream, body lotion, body wash, body scrub, body mist and so much more – rest assure that they’ve got you covered. Indulge a little and make it feel like you’ve stepped into a resort every time you shower.

Conscious collection

H&M Beauty 5

H&M Conscious Beauty is focused on body care and hair care products only. The range is made of ingredients that are more sustainably produced plus all packagings are fully made of recyclable materials. Those pastel lip balms are so pretty we might just buy all five of them.

Premium range

H&M Beauty 4

Get the luxurious feel when you bathe with the Premium selection of body care and smell like a million bucks with its fragrances. Though this is the premium range, you wouldn’t need to burn a hole in your wallet as everything is priced under $20. 


H&M Beauty 8

How can we forget about nail colours. It’s all about fun and experimentation with our nails and with a variety of over 200 colours, you don’t have to worry about not finding the right tone of red, nude or metallic. 

And of course there will be makeup tools like brushes, sponge, pins etc which are already available in stores.

6 Must-Buys

H&M Beauty 7

With so many beauty products for you to choose from, we bet you’re feeling bit overwhelmed right now – we narrow down the whole beauty range to these six must-buys for your first purchase!

#1 Velvet Lip Cream – $14.90
#2 Eye Shadow Palette – $14.90
#3 Pure Velvet Cream Blusher – $14.90
#4 Body Scrub – $7.90
#5 Premium Range Roll-On Fragrance – $14.90
#6 Conscious Collection Hand Cream – $12.90

H&M Beauty will be available at Orchard Building from 9th September. If you’re into pretty beauty products, here are some that are so gorgeous that they should be in a museum instead.


8 Beauty Products That Are Too Pretty To Use

24 Aug 2016 by Venetia Sng

We all know that a good beauty product delivers what it promises, that said, if there’s any makeup or lotion that comes in an irresistible packaging, that might just sway us into buying it regardless. Here are a few beauty products that are so pretty that we might just use them for display only. Just take our money already!

#1 Rose Facial Foam – Kanebo


A video posted by @santsugaru on

Though this was released back in July, this Instavideo went viral recently and we can’t stop watching it! It’s so satisfying to see the rose emerging slowly from the dispenser and whilst it’s not recommended, we’d totally want to wash our face all the time.

#2 Flower Jelly Lipstick – Kailijumei

We’re sure you’ve seen this gorgeous lipstick popping up on your social media feeds and it’s gaining fans all over the world for all the right reasons. Look at that flower encased in the clear jelly lipstick and gold specks. It’s so pretty that we #cannot.

#3 Rose Blush – Ladurée

Rose Blush Ladurée

The packaging of this blush has already won us over but it doesn’t stop there. The blush itself is shaped as rose petals! This is like the most gorgeous blush or what? It doesn’t come with a cheap price tag though, currently on sale at US$140, we can only dream of owning it.

#4 Star Lipstick – Anna Sui

Star Lipstick Anna Sui

The crystal like casing, the marbling effect and did we mention the star shaped lipstick? We imagine that it’d be like wishing on a shooting star every time we apply the lipstick on our lips.

#5 Ombre Blush – NYX

Ombre Blush NYX

The ombre effect is so beautiful, we would stare at it the whole day. Best thing is that it isn’t just easy on the eyes, the colour pay off is great and it won our Readers’ Choice for the Teenage Beauty Awards! Enough said.

#6 Modernist Eye Shadow Palette – Hourglass

Eye Shadow Palette Hourglass

This eyeshadow palette is pressed in such a gorgeous way that it can be framed up as an art piece. I mean, why would you want to dab your brush and destroy this perfectly pressed eyeshadow?!

#7 Brush – Ladurée

Makeup Brushes Ladurée

Do your makeup with style like Marie Antoinette with these brushes. They’re are made to the style of the Merveilleuses of 18th Century France, who were known for their extravagant and decadent behavior. You can even get a brush holder and hand mirror to go with the brushes. 

#8 Bold Metals Miracle Diamond Sponge – Real Techniques


A photo posted by Real Techniques (@realtechniques) on

Why go for a regular beauty sponge when you can have a marbled diamond shaped sponge? This beauty sponge is so stunning, we’d wear it as an accessory if we could.

Want to learn some uncommon beauty hacks? Here are some simple but yet genius beauty hacks that anyone and everyone can do!


5 Tips To Eliminate Body Odour

23 Aug 2016 by Venetia Sng

Ever had that moment where you get a whiff of an unpleasant smell and realise that it’s actually coming from you? Don’t worry, it happens. Here are some tips that’ll help you stay (and smell)  fresh all day, even throughout hot weather! 

#1 Use Antibacterial Soap

Woman washing her hair in shower

In Singapore’s hot and humid weather, it’s recommended for us to shower thoroughly at least once a day as dirt and bacteria accumulates as the day goes by – yes even if you’re just sitting around at home. Sweat by itself is odourless but when mixed with the bacteria that live on our skin, the bacteria multiplies and that’s where the stink is from. When you’re showering, use antibacterial soap and focus on areas prone to sweating like your underarms. Make sure you towel off your whole body dry after showering and before applying any products to make sure those irksome bacteria doesn’t breed.

#2 Have a clean wardrobe

Bring a change of clothes if you know that you’ll be working up a sweat as fresh clothes help keep the body odour at bay. For those with smelly feet, ensure that you change your socks after every wear and use deodorant powder or sneaker balls to keep those kicks smelling good. On top of that, wash your bath towels on a weekly basis and bedsheets biweekly so that your efforts won’t go to waste!

#3 Eat less “smelly” food


You really are what you eat – the food you eat does affect your body odour. You know how we tend to sweat more when we eat something spicy? That contributes to manufacturing of the odour and for strong smelling food like onions and garlic, the aroma can be carried in our sweat as well. Bad news for people who loves their coffee, caffeine may cause some to sweat more than usual as well. So try to cut down on these food if you’re trying to eliminate that smell.

#4 Keep those armpits clean

Removing your underarm hair isn’t just for beauty – it’s for hygiene purposes as well. Hair absorbs odours easily because of its porous texture, plus bacteria multiplies in damp areas of your armpits. Hence, removing the hair will reduce the space for bacteria to breed, resulting in more pleasant smelling underarms.

#5 Use deodorant 

Nivea Protect Care

Last but not least, we cannot emphasise how important it is to use an anti-perspirant deodorant is when it comes to body odour. Why worry about how you will smell at the end of the day when you can just apply NIVEA Protect & Care Roll On ($4.90) or Spray ($9.10) on your armpits? It contains zero alcohol which means no skin irritation (yay), contains moisturising ingredients from the NIVEA crème and has the soothing NIVEA crème scent that smells heavenly. Protection for up to 48 hours, you’ll be sure that your underarms will be fresh all day everyday!

Get the NIVEA Protect & Care Roll On and Spray at all major personal care stores and supermarkets or buy it here.

Image credit: Pixabay, Getty

Ever wonder how you can whiten those dark underarms? Read on here.

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