There’s more to a Sunscreen than Blocking

The harmful effects of UV light on the skin have been well documented…but to remind, UVA is primarily responsible for premature skin aging, and UVB has been implicated in sunburns and skin cancer. And both start with UV radiation.

Visible light—the one that is seen by the human eye -- also needs to be reckoned with. It’s emitted by the sun but can come from artificial sources, including medical devices, screens, and blue light. At specific wavelengths, it is therapeutic as it is with hair removal, acne control and the treatment of precancerous skin lesions. The problem is that visible light penetrates much deeper into the skin than UV radiation and has been shown to cause persistent skin pigmentation, including melasma and post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation.

Our love of treatment sunscreens is no secret. DNA repair enzymes and healthy doses of antioxidants when supplied in broad-spectrum formulas have been clinically evaluated to show that skin cancer and photoaging indicators improve significantly with consistent use. A clinically evaluated 40-52% improvement.

What’s equally exciting is the growing evidence that suggests tinted sunscreens may be particularly beneficial for those prone to hyperpigmentation or melasma. In fact, tinted sunscreens have been found to be superior in reducing melasma relapses and tenacious hyperpigmentation.

Here’s why: To block visible light, a sunscreen must be visible on the skin like Silc Sheer 2.0 is. The reason it works so well: we combine broad-spectrum mineral UV filters, like zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, with pigmented iron oxides to produce the visible, universal-tone color capable of reflecting visible light. That’s science at work… and the instant glow it provides is pretty cool too.

1 Boukari F, Jourdan E, Fontas E, Montaudié H, Castela E, Lacour JP, Passeron T. Prevention of melasma relapses with sunscreen combining protection against UV and short wavelengths of visible light: a prospective randomized comparative trial. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2015 Jan;72(1):189-90.e1. doi: 10.1016/j.jaad.2014.08.023. Epub 2014 Oct 22. PMID: 25443629.

 2 Randhawa M, Wang S, Leyden JJ, Cula GO, Pagnoni A, Southall MD. Daily Use of a Facial Broad Spectrum Sunscreen Over One-Year Significantly Improves Clinical Evaluation of Photoaging. Dermatol Surg. 2016 Dec;42(12):1354-1361. doi: 10.1097/DSS.0000000000000879. PMID: 27749441.