Selecting a sun protectant that not just suits your skin type but also provides adequate safety from UV radiations is essential. Here is a guide that can help you choose the right product.
We all have been reminded by skin specialists, cosmetologists, and our mothers that the one skincare routine that is non-negotiable is the frequent application of sunscreen. While we may try to follow this rule, many of us do not have an idea of what to look for in a sunscreen. The FDA deems seventeen ingredients fit to be added to sunscreen creams and lotions. Some of these compounds transform radiations into heat, therefore, preventing them from damaging your skin. Others help bounce off the emissions so that they do not pierce your skin. It is critical to understand which ingredients work for you in order to make the right choice. Here are some things to keep in mind while selecting and using a sun protectant skin product-
1. Sunscreens Have A Shelf Life Too – Applying a sunscreen that has been lying in your beach tote for a long time is not a great idea. A skincare product that has been exposed to heat for too long or has exceeded its expiration date can do more harm than good. Not only are such products ineffective, but they may also irritate the skin. Get a new tube if you know that the existing one has been lying around for long.
2. Look For ‘Broad Spectrum’ Defense – Most products are useful in creating a shield from the carcinoma-causing effects of UVB rays. However, UVA rays are also equally detrimental to skin health. It is, therefore, vital to pick a sunscreen that protects from both types of emissions to curb cancer risk.
3. Choose An SPF 30+ If You Are Light-Skinned Or Have Had A History Of Melanoma – People who fall in the high-vulnerability group for skin carcinoma will benefit most from a product that has SPF values higher than 30. Such creams or lotions cut out roughly 97% of UVB radiations. Products with SPF levels lower than 15 are only useful in preventing a skin burn and not reducing the risk of carcinoma.
4. ‘Water Resistant’ Products Also Need To Be Reapplied Frequently – Sunscreens that claim to be water resistant are usually effective for 40 to 80 minutes depending on their strength. It is advisable to reapply every couple of hours while swimming or sweating.
5. Prefer Lotions Instead Of Sprays – Sunscreen sprays have become quite the rage as they are quicker to apply. However, it can be difficult to ascertain complete coverage. Besides, accidentally inhaling a spray may prove to be quite harmful as well. Lotions are, therefore, a safer bet.
6. Apply Sunscreen Right Before You Step Outdoors – The best time to slather on sun protection is just before you are stepping out of your door. Even if you have already applied it earlier in the day, reapply it before going out so that you are sufficiently protected.
7. Keep Your Skin Type In Mind Before Making A Selection – People who have dry skin need sunscreens that also act as moisturizers. Such products often contain compounds like lanolins or silicones to provide the additional hydration. On the other hand, those with acne-prone skin are better off going in for gel-based options which have a small amount of alcohol. These sunscreens do not leave the skin feeling greasy.
Aside from sunscreen, it is also imperative to follow some precautions. These include opting for protective clothes when you anticipate excessive sun exposure, wearing broad-rimmed hats, and choosing to move to a shaded area after brief intervals in the sun.
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