Wednesday, May 29, 2013

I Trust The Bum

Well I've returned from the backwoods, and had a great trip! I was prepared for the weather we were supposed to get (snow, ice, and cold) but instead hiked and canoed in the warmest weather we've had since I started leading this trip years ago and beautiful sunshine all but one day. I brought along one of sun bum's products, Sun Bum Pro, as my sunscreen. 

*Sun Bum was kind enough to let me test their product, you can read my full disclosure here

Sun Bum is a small company that creates safe sun care products specially made for those of us with outdoor lifestyles. Luckily, I had the perfect trip to test it out on. Our trip took us through about 75 miles of backwoods in seven days with a team of new outdoor athletes. We were in direct sun most of the day and the only time I got burned was the day I "forgot" to apply... it had slipped to the abyss that is the main compartment of my pack and I was in a hurry. 

Surprise, surprise, it doesn't work if you don't use it... sun bum got it right when they said "next time you're out in the sun, protect your lazy ass and grow old with us". Needless to say, I was in pain and sun bum didn't leave my side the remainder of the trip. 

The sunscreen is a more natural and safe variety, which means it applies a little thicker and whiter than the bottle you would get at the drugstore as most natural sunscreens do. While it takes a little more effort to rub in, your left protected from the sun without the chemicals. Also, if your in some serious all day sun, the sunscreen could be applied and left a little white, which kept the students and my burned arms cooler (but sun bum also makes a awesome aloe product!). 

I have to admit the packaging is what first drew me toward the product. It's just cool. Sun Bum pro comes in the smallest sizes (a stick, 1.5 oz, or 3 oz) and is available in spf 30 or 50. The packaging was durable, and didn't break, leak, or open after getting smashed around in my hiking pack. Even with its small size, it was enough to use and share with my team for a week and still have plenty left over when I returned. The yellow bottle is topped off with a wood grain cap that is not attached to the bottle. This was slightly problematic when passing the bottle around the group in the morning. Invariably someone would loose the cap, which is small and blends in with the forest floor. This was really more of an issue of our irresponsibility than the product, but I would remember to hold onto the cap if you're going to share. 

When the cap is removed, some of the bottle sticks up on either side of the opening. This meant some sunscreen on the bottle, but it wasn't as much of a problem as I originally thought it would be. The sunscreen itself smells nice, summery without being too fruity, but wasn't strong enough to attract the black flies, which earns bonus points. Sun bum pro also worked great as a facial sunscreen (because I'm not bringing two!). It wasn't oily and didn't cause breakouts in anyone that used it. 

While I didn't swim much with the sunscreen on, I was splashed pretty frequently by inexperienced paddlers and frustrated co-leaders without losing the sunscreen (and without getting that spotty burn from it washing of just on the splashed spots!) It also didn't rub off on my pack (or leave unprotected spots where the pack straps press your shoulders). Definitely stays put!

The short story: 

-Awesome packaging
-Great scent without being overpowering
-spf 30 or 50 provides protection
-long lasting and waterproof
-3 sizes (stick, 1.5 oz, 3 oz)
-Can be purchased here, in stores here, and I recently spotted the line at Ulta!

What sunscreen are you reaching for this summer?

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