A model displays Black Girl Sunscreen. (Courtesy photo)

The question lingers: Do people with darker skin tones actually need sunscreen? That’s the question I posed to the team behind Black Girl Sunscreen.

Their story began with a need – a need for a sunscreen brand that caters specifically to women of color. We’ve all experienced, or perhaps even participated in, trying to protect our complexions from the harsh sun.

Visions of aunties carrying large, expensive umbrellas to the beach and other home remedies come to mind. Many of us have also dealt with the white residue left by some sunscreens and how it ruins makeup.

Shontay Lundy, the founder of Black Girl Sunscreen, decided in 2016 to create a solution. Black Girl Sunscreen (BGS) launched with a 30 SPF lotion formulated for women of color. Made with melanin-rich skin in mind, BGS dries completely clear and protects melanin without the white cast.

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Today, BGS is sold online and on the shelves at Target and Ulta. It’s worth noting that the global expansion of Black Girl Sunscreen has grown exponentially because it works. Positive word-of-mouth is driving sales.

Their goal is to start a global conversation around sun safety to educate and protect melanin-rich skin worldwide. With all their products, they emphasize that melanin-rich skin is susceptible to damage, and it’s in our power to protect it.

Here’s what the team at Black Girl Sunscreen (BGS) had to share about sunscreen, the sun, and our skin:

L.A. Sentinel: Why do people with darker skin tones need sunscreen?

Black Girl Sunscreen: We get sunburned too! No matter the season, there’s always a reason to protect your skin. SPF is a crucial step in skincare that should never be skipped. Reduce your risk of skin cancer, hyperpigmentation, and wrinkles by applying Black Girl Sunscreen’s broad-spectrum SPF as part of your daily routine.

LAS: How should we apply it? Does it fit into a traditional makeup routine?

BGS: Apply liberally 15 minutes before sun exposure. Reapply after 80 minutes of swimming or sweating, immediately after towel drying, and at least every two hours. Sunscreen should go on before starting your typical makeup routine and can even serve as a moisturizer. BGS’ Make it Matte is a favorite for those who wear full faces as it serves as an amazing protector from the sun and a makeup primer.

LAS: Do we only need it in the summer?

BGS: Sunscreen should be worn daily, all year long!

LAS: What beauty products does Shontay Lundy, the CEO, love for our skin?

BGS: BGS SPF 30 is Shontay’s favorite skincare product! When she isn’t wearing makeup for professional shoots, etc., she only uses the SPF 30 as it serves multiple purposes, including moisturizing, sun protection, acne prevention, and helping to fight hyperpigmentation.

To learn more, visit www.blackgirlsunscreen.com/collections/sunscreen/