“If you want good skin in your 50s, start using a good sunscreen in your early 20s”.
In case you were wondering, this isn’t just any quote we plucked off the internet. It’s actually pretty good advice. We know now that ultraviolet rays from the sun can damage skin, and not just in terms of burning it. UVB rays are responsible for burning skin, but did you know that UVA rays are responsible for aging skin?
Tip #1 LOOK FOR “BROAD SPECTRUM” SUNSCREENS
SPF measures the level of protection against UVB rays – which are responsible for sunburns. A minimum of SPF 30 is recommended – this filters out 97% of UVB rays. SPF 50 filters out just 1% more, and SPF100 filters out 99%. So you can see that the difference in protection beyond SPF30 is not a whole lot more. More importantly, the SPF rating on a sunscreen does not indicate protection against UVA rays. UVA rays are responsible for ageing. So you should be looking for a sunscreen that is at least SPF 30 and has “broad spectrum” coverage as well. Some experts believe that applying a sunscreen with very high SPF has the unintended effect of making people reapply sunscreen less often or stay out in the sun for far too long. No matter how how the SPF, sunscreens need to be reapplied every 2 to 3 hours because they get deactivated by the sun.
Tip #2 A LITTLE (SUNSCREEN) DOES NOT GO A LONG WAY
I hate to disappoint, but a study showed that up to 40% of sunscreens tested in 2016 fell short of their labeled SPF. Most sunscreens that actually lived up to their claims were actually the regular inexpensive ones! And the fact is no one really likes to apply sunscreen, but did you also know that a regular teaspoonful of sunscreen is required for the face to achieve the advertised SPF (if the sunscreen is legit and lives up to its advertised SPF)? Sunscreens can also be rubbed or washed off unintentionally. Perhaps the new wash-on sunscreen is our new hope.
Tip #3 ALL SUNSCREENS ARE NOT REALLY MADE THE SAME
With so many sunscreens in the market, which one do you buy? What about makeup or moisturizers with SPF in them?
Ask any dermatologist and they will tell you that you need a regular sunscreen beneath your makeup. Or you will need to apply about 5 to 14 times more makeup than you normally do to achieve the advertised protection.