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Think Dirty's App - The Best & Worst Thing to Happen to Your Bathroom

I'm going to ruin your life and make it so much better all in one swoop - by introducing you to the Think Dirty App I am putting you on a road (and a black hole - sorry!) that will have you scanning every barcode in your bathroom and entering every skincare item you've ever put on your face.  You will groan with annoyance when favorite products are "in the red" and let out a yelp of happiness when they're "in the green".  Here's how it works:

After downloading the free Think Dirty App (avail on Apple, soon to be on Android) consumers scan the barcode for or type in the name of a beauty product - haircare, makeup, skincare, bath/body, etc. - and if enough folks have looked up that same product it will have been added to Think Dirty's database.  Companies can also have their products added (after running their ingredient decks through the third party) if they'd like to share their ratings with the public.

Think Dirty tells you how the product ranks in three categories
  • Carcinogenicity
  • Developmental and Reproductive Toxicity
  • Allergies and Immunotoxicities

You get an ingredient list by "color" and you can click on each ingredient which links to studies that tell you why it's getting a Green (0-3), Yellow (4-7) or Red (8-10) Rating and then you can make your decision of whether that makes it a make or break situation for you.  

For example, I love Carol's Daughter Monoi Hair Mask and it gets a 9 (red - bad!) because of the added fragrance which is a 9 and then some so-so ingredients that are in yellow.  Now, I love that fragrance and I'm washing it out of my hair, not leaving it on my skin so I'm totally fine with it.  If it were a skincare item, like the Coppertone Water Babies that I used to wear as I assumed stuff targeting babies would be healthy (wrong!), with other ingredients I don't like, or if it had fragrance and it was skincare, then that would make me cut it.  So, you kind of have to decide what your "line" is and then purchase differently next time which is super easy as most of the products on the app have a "Shop" option where you can purchase them online.

But I love the app because I feel like it gives you education and information - and I don't want it to come from a fear-based place but an "oh, I didn't know that.  Next time I will purchase something different" type of place.  And you can literally scan stuff at the store!!  

So, how does Erin's Faces stack up???  At this moment I've got my skincare listed so here's how it shakes out - see how your favorite products fare!  If you have a fave please head over to Think Dirty and "like it" :) - 

These guys are all detergent, sulfate and dye free (the black is from charcoal).

Anti-aging powerhouses with no silicones or petrochemicals - yes please!

Gentle and hydrating - just what the doctor ordered.

Hardcore lifters and firmers in here do great work without any icky stuff.

All of these are officially baby safe goodies for your little ones - even infants!

These scrubs are made with essential oils instead of added synthetic fragrances.

Hydrating, soothing and so luxurious!

Toxin-free in arenas (mosquito spray and room spray) that are notorious for adding chemicals and synthetic fragrances.


Girl Crush - Tony Award Beauty 2015

The Tony Awards were last night (yay!!) and there was so much pretty happening on the red carpet - though I have to be honest that the internet is full of pictures of beautiful women who attended the Tony Awards but have nothing to do with American Theatre, so I tried to keep it to women who are IN the theatre so here we go - 

Bold Lips:

Chita Rivera's (The Visit) bold red lip matched her dress and wrap

Gretchen Mol (Disgraced) was giving you a classic brick lip

I loved Vanessa Hudgens' (Gigi) Heidi braid and tomato lip

Leann Cope (An American in Paris) danced BEAUTIFULLY and wore a berry lip on the carpet

Elizabeth Moss' (The Heidi Chronicles) whole situation made me so happy - she just looked like spring and flowers and pink - loved!

Lisa Kron (Fun Home) had beautiful skin and a berry lip 

Patricia Clarkson (The Elephant Man) pulled the red from her dress in her lip choice

I thought Ruth Wilson's (Constellations) choice of wearing a fuchsia dress and pairing it with a red lip was a fun one

Lydia Leonard (Wolf Hall) had immaculate skin and a berry lip 

I LOVED Geneva Carr's (Hand of God) whole look - hair, makeup, dress - the whole nine

Victoria Clark (Gigi) looked like a movie star with her honey hair, deep lip and navy dress - gorgeous!

Fun Eyeliner:

Patina Miller (formerly in Pippin) went with a clean face with a thicker liner and lashes

Amanda Seyfried (The Way We Get By) also had clean skin and fully rimmed eyes that made her blue eyes pop

Annaleigh Ashford (You Can't Take it With You) looked SO PRETTY!  Winged liner, glowy skin, nude lip - I loved it


I appreciate that Sutton Foster always is true to her aesthetic of being natural but polished

And Bernadetter Peters is 68 ya'll - USE YOUR SUNSCREEN and you too can look like this

Carey Mulligan (Skylight) went for a soft lip shade that pulled from her dress color

Helen Mirren (The Audience) always looks gorgeous and her watermelon lip with a pink cheek was perfect with her white dress 

Jeanine Tesori (Fun Home) looked like a beachy bronzey natural beauty on the red carpet

She won!!!  Kelli O'Hara (The King and I) always goes classic but did do a heavier eyeliner than usual and I thought she looked stunning.

I thought Kristin Chenowith (On the Twentieth Century) looked so pretty in her silver dress and natural makeup

Laura Osnes had a beautiful raspberry lip

Don't you love this face?! Sydney Lucas (Fun Home) wore age appropriate makeup for her first Tony nomination

And Ruthie Ann Miles (The King and I) gave you a soft smoky with a contoured cheek - yes please!

Photos from Getty Images, Just Jared and Zimbio


All Your SPF Questions Answered

Why do I need to wear sunscreen?
90% of visible signs of aging (wrinkles, fine lines, brown spots, sagging skin) are from sun damage.  90%!  Sunscreen is the number one anti-aging thing you can do for your skin, it protects against skin cancer and free radicals and it literally keeps your skin from burning.

What's all this talk of physical and chemical sunscreens and why should I care?
This is important folks!  Check out EWG for in depth info but here's the breakdown on how to tell the difference:

Most chemical suncreens (with the exception of Mexoryl SX) have been shown to either affect reproductive systems/endocrine systems/cause skin allergies.  It's pretty bad news bears and since there are alternatives I say go with the physical.

photo from acne.org
Physical SPFs make the sunlight "bounce" off while chemical SPFs absorb it.

What's the difference between SPF 15/30/50?
SPF 15 blocks 93 percent of UVB radition, SPF 30 blocks nearly 97 percent.  SPF 50 blocks 98 percent.  So, generally it's recommended to do a 30+ and call it a day.  15 doesn't block quite as much but 50 doesn't block much more.

Is it really waterproof?
Nope, they're not allowed to say that anymore.  As of June 2012 sunscreens can't be marketed as "waterproof" or "sweatproof" basically because they're not.  They can be marked as "water resistant" with the recommendation that they be reapplied after 40 or 80 minutes (it'll be marked on your bottle).

How often do I have to reapply for real? 
Okay, so to me it depends on if you're going to be in direct sun all day or not.  If you are - like you're going to the beach, zoo, park, BBQ, etc - you need to reapply every 2 hours and if you're swimming or sweating a lot you need to reapply every 40-80 minutes.  So basically we all need to buy stock in SPFs.

How often do I need to reapply if I'm not at the beach?
"On a normal day, which generally means to and from work and a short walk at lunch, an effective amount of sunscreen applied in the morning is still going strong when you're done with work and on your way home" (Paula Begoun).

UVA, UVB or both?
Both.  UVB rays are what causes your skin to burn so we want to block those for sure.  UVA rays are just as damaging, you just can't see the damage with your eyes, so you want to block those too.  Using a sunscreen that is marked Broad Spectrum ensures that both UVA and UVB rays are blocked.  

What's best for babies under 6 months?
The FDA wants you to keep them out of the sun but Zinc Oxide is the only approved  active ingredient for little ones under the age of 6 months with permission from a pediatrician.

How do I know what to buy?!
You can check the Environmental Working Group or scan a barcode on the new Think Dirty App - both tell you how "green" your product is (I'm super excited because Erin's Faces is going to be added to the Think Dirty database in the next week or so and both of my sunscreens are "in the green"!).

Here are some Body SPF ratings from Think Dirty (and I chose the Natural/Baby SPFs from big brands since those are generally the most gentle - or so we think):

Erin's Faces Mineral SPF 32, Juice Beauty SPF 30 Sport Sunscreen, California Baby Super Sensitive SPF 30, Badger SPF 30, The Honest Company Sunscreen Lotion SPF 30
Banana Boat Natural Reflect SPF 50, Jason Mineral Sunscreen SPF 30, Hawaiian Tropic Sheer Touch SPF 30, Water Babies SPF 50, No-Ad Kids Sunscreen SPF 50
And some Face SPF ratings:

Juice Beauty SPF 30 Oil-Free Moisturizer, Coola Makeup Setting Spray, Erin's Faces Peptide SPF 30, Burt's Bees Renewal Lotion SPF 30, La Roche Posay Anthelios SPF, Neutrogena Age Shield Face SPF 70, Eucerin Daily Protection Moisturizing Lotion SPF 30
I've heard that some sunscreens can cause cancer - what's the story?
The jury's still out on this but the concerns are with chemical sunscreens.  Some folks say it's fine and others say it's no bueno.  I stick to physical SPFs since it takes the guesswork out.

Do I have to wait before I can go outside?
With chemical sunscreens, yes; with physical sunscreens, no.

Sprays and powders seem easier - can I just do those?
Short answer - they're not the best choice.  You can inhale nano and micronized zinc and titanium in powdered sunscreens and makeup (sidenote - this is why I have liquid mineral foundations in my makeup line and not loose powder ones) and in the spray of sunscreen and that's not good for your body.  We also tend to not apply enough SPF when we use sprays and powders.

Will I get enough Vitamin D if I wear SPF?
There are mixed studies on this - some say yes, some say no.  But you probably won't get skin cancer either so that's a bonus.  Check with your doc if you're concerned about Vitamin D deficiency - you can always boost your meal choices with items high in Vitamin D or take supplements.

How much should I wear on my face?
1/4-1/2 a teaspoon is what most dermatologists would like for you to be doing.  It looks like a nickel sized amount on your hand.  It's a lot.

What about on my body?
Roughly 1 oz (the size of a shot glass) per two hours.  Or per 40-80 minutes if you're swimming.  Yep.  A 3 oz bottle should last you possibly one day if you're person at the beach.  It's annoying, I'm with you, but so are the things that can happen if you don't do it.

What happens if I don't apply enough?
Your SPF 30 can quickly become an SPF 15 if you apply half of the the recommended amount..

Can I use my sunscreen from last summer?
Check the expiration date but probably not - most have a shelf life of one year.  And per the recommended usage if you have some left it probably also means you aren't using enough.

Okay, I put a lot on and now it's not rubbing in and I look like a ghost - help!
There are two ways you can go with this:
1 - go in layers.  Apply one layer, make sure it's rubbed in and then go for layer two.
2 - give it two minutes.  Brush your teeth and then rub it in - most of the white stuff will go away and you'll be left with a few streaks.  Rub those in while the skin is still moist (if you wait too long they'll dry and they're impossible to blend).  

What is a facial sunscreen that won't break me out/antagonize sensitive skin?
Sorry for the commercial but my Peptide SPF 30 is awesome for this - it won't break you out, it's 86% organic and contains tons of humectants to hydrate and soothe sensitive skin.  And Zinc is used in diaper rash ointment to soothe little babies booties - it's very gentle.

Should it be fragrance-free?
In my opinion yes - especially on your face.  That's not a hard and fast rule, but fragrance is super irritating (synthetic fragrance) and can break you out, cause rashes, etc.

Do I have to put sunscreen on if I'm going out for dinner?
If there is still a sun in the sky, to any degree, I'd say yes (if you've been at home all day and haven't put any on yet).  Especially since we're going into summer and the sun sets later in the evening.

Is facial sunscreen a substitute for a moisturizer?  What's my skincare regime order?
For oily to  normal skin it can - especially in the summer.  If you did need a moisturizer it would go under your SPF.  SPF is the last skincare step before makeup.

Speaking of that, I have SPF in my BB Cream/Moisturizer/Tinted Moisturizer - isn't that enough?
If you're going to wear 1/4-1/2 tsp of it it is (you're not).  I wear a LOT of foundation, which has a physical sunscreen in it, but I use about a pea sized amount - nothing close to what I should be applying SPF-wise.  So I view that foundation SPF as a bonus.

So I have to do an extra SPF step?
YES.  Unless it's in your moisturizer and you use the proper amount.

What does it mean when it says Reef-Safe?
Long story short, Oxybenzone, Butylparaben, Octinoxate and 4-methylbenzylidene camphor were shown in studies to cause complete coral bleaching which causes it to die.  National Geographic had this article talking about it and every year about 5,000 TONS of sunscreen washes off of swimmers in coral reef environments.  So, look for Reef Safe options.

Does that matter if I'm not swimming in the ocean?
Short answer - yes.  Our water (after you shower from your day at the non-beach pool/backyard/etc) goes down the drain and into the world - it affects marine life whether you go to see them in person or not.

If I missed any questions just put them in the comments below!