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How Glossier’s Clear Sunscreen Gave Me Back My Beach Confidence

I love sunscreen, but I’ve always been terrible at applying it. Not actually putting it on my body, of course, but remembering and wanting to use it. Here’s the thing: Most sunscreens don’t look good on my brown skin. Eight out of ten are loaded with micronized zinc that leaves a heavy residue and turns my skin into a ghostly white or bluish tone that lasts for hours. Yeah—not exactly the sun-kissed, dewy look I’m going for.

Everyone who's ever read a thing about sunscreen knows that UV rays break down collagen in your skin, causing wrinkles and sunspots to appear. I’m a beauty writer, so I’ve been beaten down with the benefits of applying a daily sun protectant, but I still can’t bring myself to look a chalky mess. So I shamefully don’t wear any, and I’m sure my 70-year-old self will hate me for it.

That is, until Glossier touted a new clear sunscreenInvisible Shieldearlier this month.

For starters, the texture really is amazing. Emily Weiss, the founder of Glossier, wrote in Into the Gloss, “It’s like water on the skin,” and she’s right. It’s a milky, serum-like substance at first, but then it quickly dissolves and absorbs into your skin, just like H2O.

Along with the sun protection, it’s also a mash-up of vitamin E, vitamin P and broccoli (seriously). So, although it’s laced with chemicals like avobenzone and homosalate, you still feel good about using it. Sort of.

The only downside is that it’s only one ounce. Yes, one ounce! You’ll definitely want to use it sparingly. It also doesn’t help that the formula isn’t waterproof—meaning you’ll need to re-apply if you sweat a lot or jump (get thrown?) into a pool. But, it’s carry-on-friendly and fits into the palm of your hand, which is ideal when packing light.

I can’t say that I’ll hit the beach multiple times this summer, but at least when I do, I know my ghostly days are over.

RELATED: 3 Brilliant Sunscreen Tricks Every Woman Should Know

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