Original Post July 11, 2013 by TriLAB Chris
With Tuesday’s post about athletes and skin cancer, I thought
it would be a good idea to review a sunscreen. While there are many
sunscreens out on the market, going over the new FDA regulations in
regards to the packaging and selling of sunscreen made me a bit
conscious about which sunscreen I should review. Fortunately, we carry
Thinksport, a sunscreen that uses safe ingredients.
When I say safe ingredients, I say it is free of biologically harmful
chemicals and carcinogens (cancer-causing agents), like avobenzone,
oxybenzone, or an UV chemical absorbers. The sunscreen is also free of
nanoparticles, but truth be told, science is still trying to figure out
whether or not nanoparticles are harmful. Oh well, just to be on the
safe side, they left them out.
Another big difference between Thinksport and other sunscreens is it
provides a physical barrier rather than a chemical one. A sunscreen that
provides a physical barrier reflects the harmful UV rays off your body,
whereas a chemical barrier will actually change the composition of the
UV rays that hit your body. Also, a physical barrier does not need to
soak into the skin like a chemical barrier. Some studies have also shown
that the chemicals that make up the chemical barriers in other
sunscreens are seeping into the bloodstream.
OK, enough science and data, onto the review.
The sunscreen is easy to apply, although it is a bit thicker, which
may put some people off. Unlike other sunscreens I have used, it does
not leave an oily feeling on my hands after I’ve applied it. Thinksport
labels show that their sunscreen is water resistant up to 80 minutes,
which is the FDA-mandated maximum for sunscreens since 2012. I used this
sunscreen for the Redondo Beach Triathlon, I did not reapply any during
the event, and I did not get burned. So that’s a plus.
To test it for a longer period of time, I used Thinksport sunscreen
during a metric century on my road bike. To be on the safe side, I
reapplied once, and again, did not get burnt. Or at least, I didn’t get
burned on the skin that I covered with sunscreen. There were some spots I
missed, and I certainly paid the price for forgetting to apply on the
back of my neck.
Another thing: if you sweat a lot, you will need to reapply more than
the 80 minutes or 2 hours that they recommend. Like we discussed on
Tuesday, sweat increases your skin’s sensitivity and it can “wash” away
the sunscreen from your skin. I gave a friend of mine (he sweats a lot) a
bottle of Thinksport to try, and he works on wind turbines in the
California desert. He did get sunburnt, but he let me know it was most
likely due to his profuse sweating. He let me know he would stick to
This sunscreen also has a pleasant smell, so you won’t walk/ride/run around smelling like sunscreens usually smell.
Thinksport is also great for people with sensitive skin. I know this
because on one weekend, I had forgotten to apply my Thinksport sunscreen
and had to borrow a friend’s bottle of SPF 75 sunscreen from a
different maker that boasts an extensive line of skincare products (try
to figure it out, it rhymes with “You throw Gina”). I read the label and
found the chemicals that Thinksport refuses to use, and reluctantly put
it on. I felt a slight burn as soon as I put the chemical barrier
sunscreen on, and my hands had that “oily” feeling, which was also
The science behind the product drew me to Thinksport sunscreen, and
the experience I’ve had with it and other sunscreens have sold me on the
product. I won’t use another brand of sunscreen if I can help it.
If you’re interested in learning more about the product, please visit their website.
If you’d like to try it out for yourself, please visit us at either the Redondo Beach or Santa Monica location, or place an order with us on our website.
If you have any questions, please let me know. If you have had
similar or different experiences with this brand or any other sunscreen,
let me know.
Thanks for reading!
2 Responses to Product Review: Thinksport SPF 50+ Sunscreen
Kevin (Founder - THINKSPORT) says:
July 15, 2013 at 8:29 pm
We thought we might challenge the sweaty
outdoor worker. We have too many endurance athletes and pro surfers
using our sun care lines with great experiences in prolonged and harsh
environments. It is more likely that the person didn’t apply enough
sunscreen to provide coverage. We hereby…challenge him to try it again.
Per the FDA for a full body you should be using an ounce of sunscreen.
If you overspread sunscreen you will quickly get very reduced
protection. Let us expand on this further. The SPF number is
logarithmic. If you apply 1/4 the right amount of SPF 50, you’re
getting more like SPF 3. Indeed a recent study of aerosol and sunscreen
wipes confirmed that people were not getting enough sunscreen to
achieve the SPF numbers on the bottle. While our sunscreen does apply
very easily. If you’re going to be participating in outdoor activities,
be wary to not over spread it. This is true of all sunscreens. Due to
the amount of zinc oxide that we use (>20%), we are also a truly
broad-spectrum (UVA and UVB) sun care line. UVB is what causes burns,
but UVA is what causes skin damage and attributed to the more harmful
forms of cancer. Finally, our sunscreen falls into the highest level of
water resistance called Water Resistant (80 minutes). While most
sunscreens use petroleum and chemicals to achieve this, we use natural
ingredients to provide maximum protection. You may find that it takes
soap and water to remove it. We also recommend taking a look at your
sunscreen active and inactive ingredients. As a general rule, if you
don’t recognize the word, don’t apply it to your skin.
So…if Mr. Sweaty wants to step up to the challenge again, we’ll send him a tube to try. But..he must apply.
Kevin (Founder - THINKSPORT) says:
July 15, 2013 at 8:31 pm
Also on a side note, we don’t pay athletes to use our products. You are welcome to contact these athletes for direct feedback.
Amy Marsh – Pro Triathlete
Brandon Marsh – Pro Triathlete
Patrick Evo – Pro Triathlete
Michael Lovato – Pro Triathlete
Amanda Lovato – Pro Triathlete
Desiree Ficker – Pro Triathlete, US Marathoner
Paul Terranova – First person to complete 4 x 100 mile runs + Ironman World Championships