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Sunscreen in Myanmar

When we first arrived in Myanmar we were taken aback and had to stare at most everyone. Why you ask? Everyone, well, most everyone, was wearing what we could only think was face paint. At first we thought it was a traditional part of the Thingyan Festival (Myanmar New Year) that was going on at the time of our visit. We later found out it was a traditional sunscreen used by the people of Myanmar. Though it is practical, its application to the face can also be a beauty statement by the ladies. We saw many different patterns and styles adorning the faces of women, children, and men. The sunscreen itself is made from sandalwood so we were told. While visiting a local market, one of the ladies took Sarah aside and applied the sunscreen for her. The bark of the wood is ground to a powder then mixed with water to form a paste. This paste is what is applied to the face. Because it is everywhere we became used to seeing it. Now when we are in other countries and we notice someone with it on their face it warms our hearts to know that they are from Myanmar.

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