Kerry Washington's Mom Has a Beauty Hack That Will Save Your Skin

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If there's one woman I'd love to sit with for hours chatting about all things beauty, it would have to be Kerry Washington. Not only has she managed to wow me on the red carpet with her dewy glow and perfectly glossy lips, but she also hasn't aged a day since Save the Last Dance — partly because she knows how to care for her skin.

So it only makes sense that the Neutrogena ambassador would be the face of its Choose Skin Health campaign. This media movement spreads awareness (via hashtag, #ChooseSkinHealth and celebrity involvement) on the importance of using SPF, especially when it comes to women with darker skin tones.

"Because of lack of information, a lot of people of color leave themselves vulnerable to sun damage," Kerry told us when we had the chance to speak with her. "And that means being vulnerable to skin cancer."

Read on for more on why this star says it's important to always apply before leaving the house, as well as her tips for pigmentation issues and the family beauty secrets she still values to this day.

On Being Part of the Choose Skin Health Campaign
Getty | Jim Spellman

On Being Part of the Choose Skin Health Campaign

"Just to be able to help people protect themselves and have the information has become such a priority for me," she enthused. "You know that one in five Americans will develop skin cancer in their lives, and yet it’s one of the most preventable cancers and it’s curable with early detection. It’s like there’s just no excuse."

The Best Skin Beauty Tip Her Mom Taught Her
Getty

The Best Skin Beauty Tip Her Mom Taught Her

"I grew up in a household where we used a lot of SPF, which was rare when I was a kid, because there were a lot of misconceptions about being a person of color and not needing to protect your skin," she noted. "Luckily, my mom had the right information, and so I grew up protecting my skin."

Kerry's Tip For Preventing Dark Spots
Getty

Kerry's Tip For Preventing Dark Spots

"SPF is the best way to do that," she explained. "It’s one of the reasons why we have a product called Visibly Even ($16). I love it because it has soy in it, which helps to even out your skin tone and take away the dark spots. At the same time it has SPF so it prevents those dark spots from getting darker and having new spots created."

On Not Forgetting to Reapply Throughout the Day
Getty

On Not Forgetting to Reapply Throughout the Day

"You just have to prioritize and carry it with you," she advises. "A big part of making that work is finding the approach to SPF that works for you, whether it’s more of a sport product that you need to last in all kinds of weather or something like the Ultra Sheer ($10), which will be more of an invisible coverage. Or a foundation with SPF in it, so that you’re more easily able to multitask."

The Beauty Tips She Really Values Today
Getty | Desiree Navarro

The Beauty Tips She Really Values Today

"Drinking a lot of water is a really big one and not going to sleep with any makeup on — that for me has been one of the biggest contributing factors to having healthy skin. No matter how tired you are, no matter how not in the mood you are to cleanse your face, it’s really important to me to let my skin breathe at night."