Posted by Kate (Marta hastens to add that this is not Kate in the picture)

Any time my husband starts a sentence with "Honey, I have to tell you something"...I know what follows is going to be a little painful to hear, but necessary. He loves me deeply, he is the most genuinely thoughtful man I have ever met, and I am quite sure he would rather have live bees build a hive in his pants than hurt my feelings. So when I hear "Honey, I have to tell you something", I know what is coming is absolutely well intended.

It might be "Honey, I have to tell you something.... your favorite pants make you look like Steve Urkle". Or, "Honey, I have to tell you something...just because you can still wear your old jeans from high school, it doesn't mean you should". Or, " Honey (etc), I didn't want to mention it in front of the camera crew, but you have had spinach in your teeth since lunch time". Or, most recently, and the point of this posting.... "Honey, I have to tell you something... That super dooper SPF 3000 sunscreen you have started wearing on your face makes you look like a Samuri Warrior in full Kabuki face paint".


So for the past two months, I have been searching for a "chemical lite" FACIAL sunscreen that 1) works 2) works with or without an additional layer of foundation 3) works with my very active lifestyle (read; sweaty), and 4) doesn't render me a pasty-faced zombie in the process.  (By the way, just to be clear....this is not "multiple choice" list, it is inclusive... I need a facial sunscreen that does all of the above. And at a reasonable price.)

So far only two have fit my criteria, one of which* is Abella Colorshade.  Oh baby, do I ever love this stuff.

First and foremost, let's start with "effective". I am out in the Arizona sun year round, and I can attest to the fact that it really works (reportedly with an average spf of 31) despite containing one of the lowest percentages of chemicals on the market.  The Abella web site explains the "how and whys" but the short version is the nanotechnology (size of the "protecting particles") and the "broad spectrum of protection" ColorShade affords. And according to the website, "research at the Brookhaven National Labs has determined that UVA is the main trigger for the most deadly form of skin cancer, Melanoma. Abella ColorShade blocks 80% or more of the UVA rays at all UVA wavelengths".

Next on my "it must" list; compatibility with foundation. Actually, I can wear ColorShade alone in place of foundation, because it comes in 4 tinted shades. My skin tone falls between their light and medium shades, which I mix together for a great match. Monday through Friday Colorshade protects my face under my regular make-up if I elect to do the total "buff up" On weekends, when I am out on horseback or by the pool, the minimal20tint makes my au natural skin look great while providing great protection. Who knew?

Item 3: Active Lifestyle. ColorShade goes on nicely, and for the most part, stays put. It is not water proof, but very water resistant.  Unless I do something really stupid, it doesn't rub off, migrate, or have to be reapplied, but it comes off easily at night with my "creamy cleanser".

Lastly, the pasty-faced zombie look is no longer a problem. I don't have to look as if I am near death in order to shield my skin from sunshine, yet I get great protection without lathering on the harsh chemicals and parabens I am trying to avoid. In fact, the Abella colorshade product even has moisturizers, vitamins and antioxidants, so while it is not a substitute for my regular skin care regime, every little bit helps.

According to the manufacturers website, ColorShade contains:SPF 30+ Zinc Oxide (Z-Cote®) Broad Spectrum UVA/UVB Protection Green Tea – a powerful anti-oxidant with anti-cancer benefits to protect and repair UV damage,  Vitamins D&E to assist the skin in healing,  is Paba Free and Hypoallergenic,  Non-Comedogenic (Silicone Coated) ,Non-Migrating , and Water-resistant.

Inactive Ingredients: Deionized Water, octyl stearate, isocetyl stearate, sweet almond (prunus Amygdalis Dulcis) oil, dimethicone, dimethicone copolyol, green tea extract (camellia olefera, Silica, Aloe barbadensis extract, Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), cyclomethicone caramel, hexyl laurate, bentonite, melanin, ergocalciferol, (vitamin D) DMDM Hydan toin, Sodium Chloride, May contain iron oxides & Titanium Dioxide.

Remember, this is for your FACE, and likely not what you want for a body sunscreen. But if you are looking for a great facial sunscreen, you might test Abella Colorshade. * (And watch for my review of the other facial sunscreen product which made my list.... coming to Truth In Aging soon).

Be sure to drop me a line and let me know what you think.