Green People Get Their Collar Felt

Green People SPF 50 ASA Judgement

One of the reasons for going green as a skincare brand is to acquire the halo effect that comes from being one of the good guys. Our continual experience of the real world is that nearly everything is a trade off and nothing is totally good or totally bad. But us humans still like to think of things in much more simple terms. We are inclined to think that if a brand has good values, it also has good products that do good things for you. We all do this, and no amount of logic seems capable of undoing it. I don’t think anyone doubts that many natural things are not safe. Plenty of synthetic things are perfectly harmless too. But nonetheless the words ‘safe and natural’ seem to belong together. So it is a bit surprising to find a company like Green People, which professes to be on the side of the angels in terms of its natural products, getting into hot water with the Advertising Standards Agency.

5 thoughts on “Green People Get Their Collar Felt”

  1. SPF4?? Really? Far too low imho. 15 maybe, but 4 isn’t even a legal label claim in the EU, minimum is 6. Disappointing.

    1. We both know it’s a bit more complicated than that, but if you follow the logic of how the SPF system is supposed to work a product with an SPF of 4 applied every 4 hours should give identical protection to an SPF 30 applied every 30 hours. Another more realistic way of looking at it is that if you applied the SPF 4 one every 4 hours, you’d have applied 7.5 times more product than you would have of the SPF 30. The SPF 30 product will contain more sunscreen but I doubt it will contain 7.5 times more. So my suggested regime not only keeps the skin topped up with fresh sunscreen that hasn’t been broken down by the light it is exposed to, it also applies more sunscreen in total.

      I didn’t know that SPF 4 wasn’t a legal claim? There are companies out there making it.

  2. Hi Colin! Theoretically, you are right. Applying a sunscreen more frequently is a better solution for sun protection. But as a female who wears make-up throughout the day (and I’m not talking over the top obnoxious quantities, just a bit of concealer and a blush for a very natural your-skin-but-better look) this advice is totally impractical. One cannot apply sunscreen over make-up without smudging everything, regardless what some sunscreen producers say. So multiple sunscreen applications throughout the day would mean taking down the make-up, remoisturising, applying sunscreen and then reapplying make-up on top of all that several times a day. This would be a huge time investment (and a hassle – one would need to carry a lot of products around) hardly any woman with a job and kids is capable of. So in the imperfect world of a one-time daily application a higher spf might a bit better, as the protection would be a bit stronger at least initially. At least that’s what I hope.

  3. Johanna Warren

    Colin, sadly you are wrong saying the SPF4 every 4 hours gives the same protection as SPF30 every 30 hours. Say you burn after 10 mins, the SPF4 will allow you to be exposed for about 40 mins. Reapplying after 40 mins you will start to burn because the UV dose is cumulative. The SPF30 will allow you about 300 minutes exposure before you start to burn (ie 5 hours). You will then start to burn even if you reapply. This is why we need a range of SPF numbers, to protect different skin types, under different UV strengths, with different exposure habits. This is a mistake many people make, and it could be dangerous.

  4. Fair enough, I didn’t make my point clearly enough. It only applies to someone who burns in an hour. But even the 10 minute person only needs an SPF30 for a 5 hour exposure which isn’t an especially common experience. And I maintain that even then frequent reapplication is still going to be a better strategy than a high initial dose. We’re talking biology here, not physics. You don’t take drugs in high levels once a week, nor eat your entire calorific needs for the day at breakfast.

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