Every year for Memorial Day weekend, my family would pack up the station wagon and head to the lake. The weekend would be filled with red, white and blue, firing grills, festive picnic tables, and bathing suits. My mother would chide me to apply sunscreen before doing anything. And time after time, I would jump in the pool first. The sun screen could wait. I had been pining all winter for the water and some smelly, greasy paste wasn’t going to stop me.

And then I would fry.

I’ve since learned to appreciate the importance of sunscreen, but perhaps that is because it is much better than when I was younger. It’s less greasy and smelly, can withstand sweat and water, and better absorbs into the skin—thankfully preventing that touristy semblance.

Skin care manufacturers work constantly to improve their brand. With a product that works so intimately with the human body and at times for important applications such as UV protection, failures are not acceptable. Yet, developing skin care products comes with challenges. Testing on artificial skin falls short of the real thing as skin types vary greatly. However, in-vivo testing is nearly impossible.

Innovative skin care manufacturers are turning to another way to research and develop their product: The Surface Analyst. Water contact angle measurements on the surface of the human skin can provide insight into wettability of oils and lotions. Because the Surface Analyst uses only highly purified water, in-vivo tests are possible. This way skin care products—sun screen in particular—can be improved to provide an even better experience and with more reliability.

So, while we can’t actually convince you to put sun screen on, we can help manufacturers develop the best most convenient product to allow you to carry out your Memorial Day celebrations, burn free.