6 Important Things You Need to Know about Sunscreen

A girl applying sunscreen on her legThe importance of sunscreen for your overall health and beauty can’t be stressed hard enough. Merciless UV rays make your skin age faster, cause pigmentation, and may even lead to skin cancer. It’s imperative that you apply sunscreen every time you go outside, regardless of the season because sun radiation is always present during the day and dangerous.

As the awareness of this issue increases, so does the popularity of products that offer some protection against these harmful rays. They are marked “SPF”, which stands for “sun protection factor”. The higher the SPF number, the better the protection offered by the product. Unfortunately, even despite the importance of sunscreen for our health, many people know very little about these products. We’d like to clarify some of the most important factors today:

1. SPF can be affected by external factors.
Even if your product says SPF 50+, you cannot be sure that it actually provides you with the best protection if you don’t consider the following factors:

  • Level of perspiration 
  • Intensity of the sun 
  • Application technique

2. You need to use a lot of sunscreen.
If you are used to applying a pea sized drop of cream on your face, you’ll need to break out of this habit when working with sunscreen. For the protection offered by your cream to become truly effective, you need to apply a shot glass worth of sunscreen to your legs and arms. About a teaspoon of the product should be enough for your neck.
It’s imperative to find a sunscreen that fits your skin type for your face in order to prevent oily shine and clogged pores.

3. You must reapply sunscreen for protection to remain effective.
Note that SPF rating doesn’t affect the frequency of sunscreen application. You must put on a new layer of the product every two hours, or the protection will wear off.

4. Clouds don’t protect you from UV rays.
Cloudy days aren’t an excuse to not wear sunscreen. Even if you don’t see the sun, radiation is still there and it damages your skin just as efficiently. Therefore, you have to apply sun protection skin care products every day.

5. You can’t get more protection by layering SPF products.
Even if you use several products with different SPF ratings, for example, SPF 15+ moisturizer and SPF 30+ sunscreen, you will not get any extra protection.
This won’t affect the required frequency of reapplication either, so you will need to put on a new layer of either product in two hours.

6. Reapplying sunscreen doesn’t mean you should stay out in the sun longer.
You need to understand that reapplication of the product only maintains the original protection level. Your skin suffers some degree of damage from the sun, and a new layer of sunscreen will not undo this damage.
Therefore, you should monitor the amount of time you spend outdoors and go inside every few hours to allow your skin to regenerate. Be careful to stay indoors when the sun is the highest in the sky as its rays are most damaging at this time. 

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