Protecting your skin from the sun is not just to prevent sunburns but also to prevent skin cancer & premature aging caused by too much exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays. Sunscreen is one of the best products out there that can prevent your skin from ultraviolet (UV) rays. Sunscreen prevents these UV rays and reduces your risks of getting sunburn. However, the type of sunscreen you choose and how you use it will determine your skin level of protection.
Here, we take a look at everything you need to know about wearing sunscreen.
What are the ingredients in sunscreen?
Most sunscreens contain different active ingredients that protect your skin against harmful ultraviolet rays. Zinc oxide and titanium dioxide act as physical blockers and prevent the skin from UV rays. Oxybenzone, homosalate, avobenzone, and octinoxate are chemical absorbers in sunscreen that absorb UV rays so that your skin doesn’t absorb them. Aside from these active ingredients, sunscreen products contain additional inactive ingredients, including vitamins, antioxidants, such as vitamin E, fragrances, preservatives, and emollients.
What do SPF (sun protection factor) ratings mean?
The SPF listed for a sunscreen product reflects the degree of protection against UV rays. Dermatologists generally advise using sunscreen with at least 30 SPF ratings, which equates to protection against 97 percent of the sun’s UV rays. Look for a sunscreen product with the term “broad-spectrum” if you want to make sure you’re using a sunscreen that offers enough protection against UV rays.
When and how should I apply sunscreen?
You need to apply sunscreen product 15 minutes before you go outside, and it must be applied to dry skin. Apply sunscreen on all areas of your skin not covered by clothing. If you’re sweating or swimming, then you need to reapply sunscreen every two hours.
Should people with certain skin tones or colors use less or more sunscreen?
Everyone can use sunscreen regardless of skin color and tone. Though some sets of people are more prone to sunburns than others, everyone should use sunscreen.
Are there conditions in which I should apply sunscreen differently?
Make sure you follow the same application we discussed if you prefer to use a facial moisturizer containing SPF for the face. Lip balms that contain SPF are a good idea if you want to protect your lips. Never use spray sunscreens on your face to avoid inhaling the chemicals. Avoid using sunscreen on baby skin until he or she is six months old.
Is sunscreen with higher SPF always better?
Yes. SPF 15 blocks about 93% of ultraviolet rays, compared to SPF 30 that blocks about 97% ultraviolet rays, and SPF 50 blocks about 98% ultraviolet rays. Dermatologists always recommend sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or above. Keep in mind that Higher SPF sunscreens are not easy to wear—they tend to be thicker and greasier.
Must I pay attention to the sunscreen expiration date?
Yes. The FDA requires all sunscreen products to maintain their protection for at least three years. You should not use the sunscreen if it has passed the expiring date or is over three years old. Do not use sunscreen if the color has changed.
Do you need a separate sunscreen for my face and my body?
No, but it’s best to wear a sunscreen labeled “noncomedogenic” for the face to avoid skin clog pores and prevent breakouts.
Wearing sunscreen every day is essential to your overall health because too much exposure to UV rays is directly linked to skin cancer, discoloration of scars, and premature aging. Hopefully, you are convinced about wearing sunscreen all year round.