Spring is here and summer is quickly approaching! The sun's out longer, so that means it's now time to update your skincare routine accordingly: Time to break out the sunscreen! But, before you grab just any old sunscreen, you need to make sure it's the right SPF.
In this blog post, we'll be taking a closer look at the significance of SPF, what SPF is enough, and how often you should apply sunscreen to protect your skin.
WHAT IS SPF?
SPF, or Sun Protection Factor, is a measure of how well a sunscreen can protect your skin from the harmful effects of the sun's ultraviolet (UV) radiation. The sun's UV radiation is responsible for many skin problems, including sunburn, premature aging, and an increased risk of skin cancer. Sunscreen works by absorbing or reflecting the sun's UV radiation, reducing the amount of damage to your skin. SPF is a measure of how much protection a sunscreen provides against UVB radiation, which is the type of radiation that causes sunburn and skin cancer.
WHAT SPF IS ENOUGH?
The American Academy of Dermatology recommends that everyone use a sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher. This provides adequate protection against UVB radiation, which is the main cause of sunburn and skin cancer. Using a sunscreen with an SPF of 30 blocks out 97% of the sun's UVB rays, and the highest SPF - being 100 - blocking out 99% of UVB rays. However, it's important to remember that no sunscreen can block 100% of the sun's UV radiation, so it's still important to take other precautions, such as seeking shade and wearing protective clothing.
HOW OFTEN SHOULD YOU APPLY SUNSCREEN?
It's important to apply sunscreen generously and regularly in order to get the full SPF protection. Experts recommend applying sunscreen 15-30 minutes before going outside, and then reapplying every two hours or after swimming, sweating, or toweling off. It's also important to use enough sunscreen to cover all exposed skin, including the face, neck, and ears, and to use a lip balm with SPF to protect your lips!
THE BEST SUNSCREEN FOR YOU
When you're in the market for the best sunscreen, you would want to pick the best product for your skin type and your lifestyle. As mentioned, aim for an SPF of 30 or higher. Anything less - say, an SPF of 15 - would block about 93% or less of UVB rays when applied thoroughly. That being said, it would definitely be worth your while to invest in the higher SPF.
In addition to the different SPFs you can choose from, there are 2 different types of sunscreens out there: there are mineral sunscreens, and there are chemical sunscreens. Mineral sunscreens sit on the surface of your skin and act as a shield, whereas the chemical sunscreens sink into your skin and act like a sponge. There really isn't much of a difference between these two sunscreens, however, there are a couple. For instance, because the chemical sunscreens get absorbed into your skin (rather than sit on the surface), they don't leave as much as a white cast as the mineral sunscreens sometimes do. However, the mineral sunscreens are produced more sustainably and are ideal if you have sensitive skin.
There is also a difference in daily and active sunscreens. If you're always on the move, or if you plan on going swimming all day, playing tennis, or golf, invest in a sunscreen specifically for these activities. The sunscreen lotions that are made for outdoor activities are more water-proof, meaning you wouldn't have to apply them as often as a regular sunscreen lotion. These sunscreens are definitely heavier on the skin; you wouldn't want to use it when you aren't as active, so it wouldn't mean replacing your daily sunscreen altogether.
If you're still in the market for the best sunscreen for your skin type and lifestyle, try out Salt & Stone's Natural Sunscreen
! This mineral sunscreen is not only water resistant, but it's also light-weight, made with sustainable packaging, and it doesn't leave a white-cast on your skin!
SPF is a crucial factor in protecting your skin from the harmful effects of the sun's UV radiation. Using a sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher and applying it generously and regularly is the best way to protect your skin from sunburn, premature aging, and an increased risk of skin cancer. By taking these simple steps, you can enjoy the outdoors while keeping your skin healthy and protected!