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Gwyneth Paltrow is a popular actor and businesswoman, known to millions of fans for her work as Pepper Potts in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Paltrow is equally well known for her habit of getting embroiled in controversies, primarily due to her association with the business she helped found, Goop.

The lifestyle brand is often in the headlines for one reason or another — and many believe that Paltrow should be “canceled” due to her work with Goop alone. In recent weeks, Paltrow has been making waves for another reason, an interview that she did with Vogue, highlighting her skincare routine. Critics have slammed Paltrow for the video, and for one recommendation, in particular, citing her advice as “dangerous.” 

What did Gwyneth Paltrow say about her skincare routine to ‘Vogue’?

In late March 2021, Paltrow opened up to Vogue, talking about her skincare routine and the products that she relies on, day in and day out.

“I believe that beauty and wellness are inextricably linked,” Paltrow revealed, before discussing how she always starts her day with a super-healthy smoothie concoction, made with almond milk and protein.

Paltrow likes to get in some meditation before dry-brushing her skin and then layering skincare serums and moisturizers, including Goopglow Microderm Instant Glow Exfoliator and Vintner’s Daughter Active Botanical Serum.

These days, Paltrow says that she is a skincare junkie, but as a teenager, she admitted that she wasn’t really religious with her skincare routine. “I was very much a tomboy, so this whole skin-care thing has come to me later in life,” the actor and mogul said. 

Gwyneth Paltrow’s sunscreen routine

Gwyneth Paltrow attends the 2019 amfAR Gala Los Angeles on October 10, 2019, in Los Angeles, California.
Gwyneth Paltrow attends the 2019 amfAR Gala Los Angeles on October 10, 2019, in Los Angeles, California. | Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic

Experts agree that wearing sunscreen on a daily basis is important for everyone in order to decrease the risk of skin cancers and precancers. In addition, wearing sunscreen helps to decrease signs of aging, including wrinkles and dark spots.

According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, men, women, and children over six months of age should wear sunscreen every day, even people who don’t believe that they tan easily. 

However, Paltrow is definitely not a sunscreen devotee. As she explained to Vogue: “and I’m not, you know, I’m not a sort of head-to-toe slatherer of sunscreen, but I like to put some kind of on my nose and the area where the sun really hits.”

In the associated video, Paltrow demonstrated how she typically only applies sun protection cream to her nose and cheekbones. 

Why are Gwyneth Paltrow’s sunscreen recommendations dangerous?

In an April 3rd Forbes article, a journalist took down Paltrow for her “dangerous” skincare routine — in particular, highlighting why Paltrow’s practice of only applying sunscreen to select areas of her face is a completely ineffective line of defense against the sun’s damaging rays. The article detailed how sunscreen acts like armor against the sun and is comparable to a full suite of battle protection — wearing only one or two pieces wouldn’t do a lot to help the wearer. 

“She’s not using nearly enough sunscreen and certainly you want to cover more than the bony prominences,” said board-certified dermatologist Dustin Portela on TikTok. When Paltrow says she’s not a “head-to-toe slatherer” of sunscreen, he comments: “She should be.”

With skin cancer being the most common form of cancer in the United States, Paltrow’s advice could definitely be seen as dangerous, and with her large pool of fans and devotees, there are some people who could look to her interview with Vogue for skincare advice. Ultimately, those fans should probably bypass her sunscreen recommendations and focus on some of her words about exfoliators and serums instead.