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Sunscreens You'll Actually Look Forward to Applying

We all know we're supposed to wear sunscreen, but sometimes its sticky, greasy residue makes hiding indoors almost seem worthwhile. Fear not: These smooth-sailing sunscreens are a breeze to apply, and their barely-there formulas won't turn your beach day into a major bummer. Find your perfect match here!

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The Ultimate Guide to Beauty Oils

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New Beauty Ingredients and Trends, Explained

If you've ever left the beauty aisle scratching your head at some of the latest cosmetic catchphrases (growth factors!?! sleep masks!?!), this story is for you. Here, top beauty experts break down the latest buzzwords in skin care and makeup. Consider this handy guide to some of the coolest new products and trends.

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Goof-Proof Self-Tanners

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Products You Need By 30

We're all for having fun and experimenting, but by the time you hit the big 3-0, you should be able to commit to a few reliable, no-fail beauty products. We asked top hair, makeup, and skin pros to reveal the stuff they think should be in every 30-something's bathroom.

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12 Beach Bag Must-Haves

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6 Surprising Facts About Dark Spots -- and How to Get Rid of Them

Freckles are cute -- they're also fleeting. The little brown flecks that come out in the sun usually fade by winter. Dark brown spots, on the other hand, make their mark and stay put -- unless you take action. Here's how to get rid of them and get more even, glowing skin.

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    Everything in this slideshow

    • Dark Spots are Like an Injury

      They may be painless, but your brown spots are sort of like bruises. "Dark spots are skin's response to injury," says Elizabeth Tanzi, M.D., co-director of the Washington Institute of Dermatologic Laser Surgery in Washington, DC. That injury can stem from sun damage and inflammation (like acne). Our cells make more pigment to protect skin and over time -- instead of fading -- the pigment just stays, she explains.


    • Not All Lighteners Are Created Equal

      Over-the-counter products that fade spots are usually formulated with botanical ingredients that either break up the existing melanin on skin's surface or they block the mechanism by which the dark spots are formed, Tanzi says. Kojic acid, derived from mushrooms, is a dermatologist favorite because it does both, she says. Other top lighteners are arbutin, soy, niacinamide, vitamin C, and licorice. Because they all function a little differently, getting a mix in your regimen will ensure all your brown spot bases are covered.

    • Textured Spots Won't Budge

      If your brown spot has a rough feel to it instead of being smooth and flat, it won't respond to topical bleaching and lightening creams, Tanzi says. You'll have to see a dermatologist who can freeze it off or laser it away, she explains.

    • You Can Slough Off Spots . . .

      To some extent, you can eliminate spots, Tanzi says. Alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) promote cell turnover, which removes that top layer where the pigment collects. "They do a moderately good job," Tanzi says. Try a glycolic or lactic acid based exfoliant such as Murad AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser ($46; sephora.com).



    • …But Slough Gently

      Since inflammation can lead to dark spots, especially in darker skin tones, you don't want to be too aggressive with your exfoliation. Exfoliate no more than one to two times a week to reduce the risk of irritation.

    • Sunscreen Is the Best Form of Maintenance

      You might know this one (we hope), but it bears repeating. Once you see results, you can stop using your fading treatment, but daily SPF is an absolute must to prevent new pigment from accumulating, Tanzi says. Wear a broad-spectrum sunscreen with at least SPF 30 and put on a hat when outside to shade your skin, she says.

    • Use Spot-Reducing Moisturizer

      Olay Regenerist Luminous Tone Perfecting Cream Moisturizer ($29; ulta.com) contains niacinamide, which slows down melanin production.

    • Try a Brown-Spot-Banishing BB Cream

      Neutrogena Visibly Even BB Cream SPF 30 ($16; ulta.com) includes soy to fade dark spots from the sun and acne marks.

    • Spot Treat

      Aveeno Positively Radiant Targeted Tone Corrector ($18; cvs.com) combines soy and vitamin A, which revs up cell turnover.

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      Use a Skin-Clearing CC Cream

      Kate Somerville IllumiKate CC Cream Broad Spectrum SPF 50+ ($48; sephora.com) contains arbutin and licorice extract.

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      Next Slideshow The Best Makeup for Women Over 50

      The Best Makeup for Women Over 50

      Want to look younger instantly? Start by making some easy tweaks to your cosmetic bag. Find out why your current look might be aging you. Then, follow our easy, age-defying makeup tutorials to help you achieve more youthful, glowing skin, brighter eyes, and fuller lips.
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