Since Halo, moss’ sun protection powder, is a pretty radical concept, I thought I would write a detailed Q&A for those of you interested. Leave any additional questions in the comments below!
Q: What is Halo and how does it work?
A: Halo is a dry powder that you MIX with existing skincare to create sunblock on YOUR terms. Basically, you get to choose the “base” that you add UVA/UBB protection to, so you can be sure to use skincare you know and love, that doesn’t break you out.
It comes with a little scoop, and the only other thing you need is an anointing bowl or small dish. You just place a tiny sprinkle of powder in the bowl, then add a few drops of facial oil or a pump of lotion, mix with your finger and voilá! Sunblock. Then just apply to your face!
Q: Does it work with ANY skincare?
Halo works best with face oils or creams or any other EMOLLIENT (or oil containing) lotion. You CAN add it to a gel, but it will just take longer to rub in. I personally love it with Clear Resolution, a CR and Salvation mix, or a CR and Equilibrium mix. Halo does not mix well with products that are only water based.
Q: Can I mix it with my foundation?
You probably can – give it a try! I have one foundation lying around, and it mixed with it just fine – not sure how it will do with others, but probably ok. But just be aware it will lighten the shade slightly.
Q: Does it change the texture of the skincare?
A: Yes, slightly, depending on how much you add. These minerals will add some “weight.” If you go for low coverage, and only add a teeny amount of powder, you should have a sunblock that feels almost exactly like your skincare. If you go for “surf geisha,” you will notice a slight texture change.
Q: Why is there mica?
A: There is a very small percentage of mica (sericite) added (less than 1%) to add a subtle mattifying effect. Mica is non-comedogenic, and the amount that will end up on your face after you mix a tiny sprinkle of Halo with your skincare is truly insignificant. Halo is actually very pure, concentrated sunblocking minerals and botanical extracts.
Q: Is is water-resistant?
A: Halo contains silk peptides, which in addition to having anti-aging and melanin production reducing benefits, also help bind the sunblock to your skin. Halo is most water resistant when mixed with an oil and allowed to “set” for 20-30 minutes prior to entering the water. I wear Halo when I’m going to the beach, but when I go full on surfing, I wear another a stronger sunblock (coming soon!). Halo is really intended for daily wear, just to give you the sun protection you need when going about a normal day. If you are going to be in the water, or the pool, or camping, or anything else where you are getting serious sun exposure, Halo might not be your best bet.
Q: Can I run a marathon in it?
A: Halo is not designed for serious sports and outdoors activities. It is intended to be a daily sunscreen to block the incidental and incremental sun exposure we are all faced with on a daily basis, even if we spend most of the day inside.
Q: What if I accidently put TOO much Halo in and now my face is too white?
A: First of all, make a note to use less Halo less time. 🙂 Second of all, don’t panic. Simply go over your face with just oil or lotion (no Halo added) and massage a little more. Chances are Halo will rub in, especially if after that, you do a third pass of massaging with an absorbing fluid. If Halo still does not rub in, it is ok to take a wet washcloth and gentle BLOT (don’t rub) to remove the excess.
Q: I want a high SPF but I don’t want a white face – what do I do?
A: Unfortunately, mineral sunblocks are white. The only ways to avoid this are to use a chemical sunscreen (all of which are hormone disruptors), a nano-ized zinc or titanium (suspected to cause almost as much oxidative damage as it is supposed to prevent), or tint the sunblock with mineral oxides to get a flesh tone.
If your face gets super white, then you’ve just put too much sunscreen on (see the question on SPF range below). If your face is barely white, just slightly paler than usual, then this will usually fade over the course of a few hours, and it really isn’t as noticeable as you might think. Just throw some bronzer or blush on! 🙂
That barely white face is what you want to go for when looking for a high SPF. It gets you an SPF of between 30 and 40.
Q: How long before I have to reapply?
A: If you are using Halo as a daily sunblock, then one application in the morning is fine. If you are planning to be outside, then reapply every 1-2 hours.
Q: How do I know what SPF I am getting?
A: Skin sebum naturally has an SPF of 6. Just barely white face is about SPF 30-40. A good sprinkle of Halo, but with no noticeable paling of the skin is about SPF 15-20.
Q: What is the difference in the range of SPFs?
SPF 15 blocks 93% of UVB rays, SPF 30 blocks 97%, SPF 50 blocks 98% and everything after that is just clever marketing for only a small fraction of a percent more.
Q: Does Halo block UVA rays as well?
A: Yes. Halo is mostly comprised of Zinc Oxide, which offers the most broad spectrum coverage of all the mineral sunblocks, which definitely includes UVA rays. This is one advantage mineral sunblocks have over chemical sunblocks – some chemical sunblocks do not do so great at blocking UVA rays.
Q: What is the best base to use with Halo?
A: I recommend any of the face oils, especially Clean Canvas. Ceremony also works well. Salvation is a little dense, but you can certainly add some to an oil base. Equilibrium by itself also works, but I find the end result a little too dry, personally. I find Healing Dew too light.
Q: Where was Halo when summer began? I don’t need sunscreen in the winter.
A: Yes, you do! Even if you’re not tanning and burning, you’re still getting exposure from the sun. And if there’s snow and ice everywhere, you’re getting additional sun exposure because these substances are reflective. It is important to protect the skin from the sun every day. Then when you’re 70 years old, with the skin of a 30 year old, you can be really smug.
Also, the launch timing is not ideal. Beginning of summer WOULD have made more sense. 😉
Q: Why no Titanium Dioxide? Other mineral sunscreens have it.
A: Zinc Oxide has the most comprehensive coverage of both UVA and UVB rays, and protects against UVA rays much better than Titanium Dioxide. It is a little heavier than Titanium Dioxide, but it is incredibly soothing, fights acne, and is non-comedogenic. Titanium Dioxide, on the other hand, can cause irritation and breakouts in some people (I am one of them!) and doesn’t provide anything that Zinc does not. For a sunscreen that is anti-acnegenic, Titanium Dioxide is purposefully omitted.