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Counties where American dream is dead Mount Rainier: Body of missing man found The Wizards are essentially a rival-less team

This is SB Nation’s rivalry week. Team sites across the network will reflect on the rivalries they had throughout history.

© Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images The Wizards haven’t really had rivals in their history.
Maybe John Wall and Kyrie Irving were sorta rivals not too long ago.

For the Washington Wizards, this is ... sorta weird. They haven’t won 50 games in a regular season since the 1978-79 NBA season as the Washington Bullets. And because they were never a top-tier team for over 40 years, they’ve never really had any long-standing rivals that beat the test of time.

In the last two decades, the 2000s and the 2010s, the Wizards never really had a true mutual rivalry, at least in my opinion. They faced the Cleveland Cavaliers in the first round of the playoffs three consecutive seasons from 2006 to 2008, but they lost each series.

Then in the 2010s, the Wizards did face two teams, the Atlanta Hawks (2015 and 2017) and the Toronto Raptors (2015 and 2018), but they never really became rivalries because the teams’ peaks never truly synced at the same time.

I will say that in the last decade, there was a point guard rivalry between John Wall and Kyrie Irving, in particular from 2014-17 as the Wizards and the Cavaliers made the playoffs multiple times. But the Wizards never faced the Cavaliers in the playoffs during that time. Cleveland also made four consecutive NBA Finals appearances from 2015-18, including a championship in 2016, while the Wizards never advanced past the second round of the playoffs in any season.

Perhaps I’m sounding a bit harsh, but I don’t think I’m alone when I say that the Wizards are a team without rivals.

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This mineral sunscreen from Versed has topped my personal list after years of searching — it hydrates my skin, blends in smoothly, and never feels sticky

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Versed Skin; Alyssa Powell/Business Insider

  • Versed is a new skincare startup making affordable products for everyday use.
  • Its Guards Up mineral sunscreen ($22) boasts a silky, lightweight texture, and SPF 35.
  • It was developed to leave little-to-no white cast behind on all skin tones, though some beauty vloggers with darker skin have reported that it didn't deliver on that promise.
  • The sunscreen meets the American Academy of Dermatology's recommendations for SPF, including broad-spectrum protection and an SPF of 30 or higher.
On This Page
  • The importance of sunscreen
  • My personal review of Versed Skincare Guards Up SPF
  • How it works for darker skin tones
  • Cons to consider
  • The bottom line

I've been writing about skincare products for about a decade now, and over the years I've certainly found a few staples. One category I tend to get the most excited about is sunscreen, mostly because it's so hard to get right.

One of my favorite new finds is Versed Skincare Guards Up SPF, a relatively affordable mineral sunscreen that blends in to my skin well and doesn't feel sticky on the face. But before I tell you more about why I love it, let's chat a bit about SPF in general.

The importance of sunscreen

Obviously, sunscreen is an important part of everyone's skincare regimen. Any dermatologist you meet will tell you to wear an SPF of 30 every single day — cloudy or sunny, inside or outdoors. Unfortunately, sunscreen has a reputation for feeling greasy or heavy on your skin, messing with your cosmetics, or leaving behind a weird and unflattering white residue.

All those unsavory "side effects" translates to people side-stepping this part of their routine. In fact, according to a May 2020 report by RealSelf, 62% of U.S. residents happily slather anti-aging products daily, but only 11% use sunscreen daily. Skipping this seemingly small step inadvertently ups people's risk of developing skin cancer and actually expedites the aging process.

I'm here to tell you that the times — and formulations — have changed. Forget about everything you know in terms of texture and tinting. Over the last few decades, and especially in recent years, sunscreen products have come incredibly far.  

My personal review of Versed Skincare Guards Up SPF The sunscreen blends into my skin seamlessly, though it tends not to be quite as seamless for darker skin tones. Wendy Gould/INSIDER

Sunscreen is obviously important to use, but let's face the facts. You're not going to use SPF as often as you should if you're not excited about the way it makes your skin look and feel. Versed Skincare Guards Up SPF is one of those rare formulas that feels exceptionally smooth on the skin and actually makes me want to apply sunscreen.

Here's why it tops my personal list:
  • Broad-spectrum SPF 35: The American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) recommends using a broad-spectrum sunscreen with 30 SPF or higher. This product delivers on both fronts.
  • A safe formula: The active ingredient is non-nano zinc oxide, which offers broad-spectrum protection and is one of the safest SPF actives available. It also contains powerful antioxidants, including sea fennel extract and moringa seed extract, to protect your skin from free radical damage. It's free of parabens, sulfates, and silicones.
  • An elegant texture: It has a super lightweight texture that feels silky on your skin. The inclusion of hyaluronic acid, jojoba esters, and aloe leaf also makes it super hydrating. Because it's oil-free, it's great for oily and acne-prone skin types, too.
  • Little to no cast: As mentioned, mineral-based sunscreens are known for leaving a white cast. This product, which is slightly tinted a pinky-orange color to help brighten your complexion, leaves no cast behind on my skin, though this isn't the case for everyone.
  • Works with makeup: When SPF doesn't play nicely with your makeup, it makes you less likely to apply it. Guards Up actually sits beautifully under makeup. It hydrates so that makeup glides on more easily, and because it's free of silicones, it's unlikely to pill when it meets your foundation or BB cream.
  • Recyclable materials: Both the tube and the box it comes in are recyclable, which is a major bonus!
How it works for darker skin tones

Mineral sunscreens are known for leaving a white or purplish cast behind on darker skin tones because they contain titanium dioxide and/or zinc oxide, two notoriously chalky ingredients. Versed developed its mineral sunscreen formula with all skin tones in mind using the most finely processed zinc oxide possible, but the product hasn't necessarily delivered for everyone. A YouTube video by beauty vlogger Simply Ijé shows how the sunscreen left a cast on her darker complexion, saying that it wasn't as bad as some mineral sunscreens she's reviewed, but that it definitely wasn't perfect. Other vloggers have reported that it works well for medium and tan skin tones.

Cons to consider

Wendy Gould/INSIDER

While Guards Up is a great product, it's important to be aware of a few potential cons.

Though it's not the most expensive facial sunscreen out there, Guards Up isn't exactly cheap. It'll run you $22 for 1.7 ounces, or roughly $13 per ounce.

Another downside, as mentioned earlier, is that some people with dark complexions have reported that the product does leave a slight cast, as the minerals that act as physical sun blockers are unfortunately quite chalky, despite how fine they are. 

Lastly, it's important to re-apply SPF every four hours when indoors or not sweating, and every two hours when outside or after sweating or swimming. Liquid formulas, like this product, can be tricky to re-apply if you don't want to mess up your makeup. You might want to also invest in a powder or spray that can be easily re-applied.

The bottom line

It doesn't matter who you are, where you live, or how much time you spend outside — sunscreen should be as much a part of your daily regimen as drinking water. Finding a product that you're actually excited about is integral in developing and maintaining SPF application routine, and this product might fit the bill for you like it did for me. 

If not, there are many other excellent options out there to consider, as well. Others I personally enjoy (and which come recommended by dermatologists) are La Roche Posay Anthelios Melt-In Milk Sunscreen SPF 60 ($36), Neutrogena Sheer Zinc Face Dry Touch Sunscreen SPF 50 ($16) and EltaMD UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF 46 ($36).

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Disclosure: This post is brought to you by the Insider Reviews team. We highlight products and services you might find interesting. If you buy them, we get a small share of the revenue from the sale from our commerce partners. We frequently receive products free of charge from manufacturers to test. This does not drive our decision as to whether or not a product is featured or recommended. We operate independently from our advertising sales team. We welcome your feedback. Email us at

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