Sunscreen is known to be the most common way of protecting the skin against the harmful rays of sun. There are products that combine several ingredients that help prevent the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) radiation from reaching the skin. Two types of ultraviolet radiation UVA and UVB, damage the skin, ages it prematurely, and increases the risk of skin cancer. As we live in a country where the weather is mostly sunny and very humid, I will bring forth all the details of sun protection I have learnt so far.
Some myths that need to be clarified
Regarding sunscreen and sun protection regime, there are two common myths that circulate which need to be made clear.
1. First of all, it is considered that sunscreen when applied, stops you from tanning (getting darker). I have often heard a lot of people say this and it is really not true. No matter how much sunscreen you wear if you are exposed to the sun for long hours, YOU WILL GET A TAN! Sunscreen/Sunblock only protects you from partial UVA/UVB rays, there is no sunblock that covers you 100% so if you don’t want to tan, stay out of the sun. Unfortunately that is the only way to do it, Sunscreen helps to prevent you from burning, not tanning.
2. The second myth is that people with dark skin don’t need sunscreen as they already have dark skin and tanning won’t be prominent. Well, dark skinned people need sunscreen and skin protection just like any other person. The sunscreen’s job is to stop the harmful rays from getting to the skin’s layers.
How does SPF stamped on Sunscreen work?
Most of us get confused with the SPF amount written on the sunscreen every now and then. The thing is that SPF, a sun-protecting factor, is a measure of a sunscreen’s ability to prevent UVB from damaging the skin. A good way to look at it is in terms of percentages, for example lets say SPF 15 filters out approximately 93% of all incoming UVB rays, SPF 30 keeps out 97% and SPF 50 keeps out 98%.
Choose the right sunscreen for your skin type
There are many good companies that are making sunscreens and when you see a number of different sun protections, you get confused and ask yourself which one to really use. So here are some tips to choose the right one for your skin.
1. If you have a combination/oily skin, choose the sunscreen that doesn’t make your skin oily, preferably one that is matte. On the other hand if you have dry skin, you need to get one that moisturizes your skin.
2. In all cases I recommend a broad-spectrum sunscreen offering protection against both UVA and UVB rays.
3. You can choose sunscreens in different forms; they come in creams, lotions, sprays and gel forms. Make sure you select the right type for you so it makes it easier to apply. My skin loves lotion, so I am always up for it.
4. If you are planning a holiday or a weekend outdoors, make sure to get sunscreens with higher SPF values and remember to reapply every 2hours.
With all this sunscreen information, you will be able to select one that serves you right. I personally use SPF-50 matte creams on my face because I have oily Tzones, and SPF 30 lotion on my body…oh and I stay away from the sun as much as I can.
Evaluate your skin type, and then choose something that suits you and makes you happy.
Remember be smart about when and how long you stay in the sun.
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Till next time xoxoxo