Despite all the advanced formulas of sunscreens and higher grades of protection that cover UVA and UVB light that we use, why is it the skin cancer in America seems to be on the rise? The reasons are many from our obsession with how great a deep tan looks to just simply using our sunscreens in the wrong way.
For instance, how many of us just open the bottle, tube or spray on what we believe is enough to sufficiently coat the skin when we are in reality leaving our skin vulnerable? One ounce or half a shot glass is what is recommended, but who takes a shot glass with them when you need to reapply somewhere? You can compare that to a generous quarter size dollop of sunscreen lotion per each body part that needs to be rubbed in thoroughly. Sprays need enough to make sure that the liquid is gleaming once you finish rubbing. If you prefer a stick, you need to go over each body part using a back and forth motion at least twice to keep your skin safe.
A face needs one teaspoon of sunscreen, which once you try it will look like you are wearing a thick mask. Of course, who wants to look like that in public? Therefore, you might want to lessen that undesirable effect by applying about half, rubbing it in and then waiting until it sinks in somewhat until repeating and using the rest. This wait not only helps to make your face more presentable when you finally emerge outside but also is important because you need that sunscreen on about 20 minutes first before it adequately protects.
As to the sunscreens, a broad-spectrum with at least SPF 30 is what you should be using every day for commutes to work, trips to the store, but basically when you intend to spend only a short time in the sun. Yet, some of us neglect that necessity or just forget for one reason or another. When you’re planning to enjoy longer stretches outdoors to soak up the sun, then go with SPF 50+.
Some people think just because they have a high SPF that they don’t have to reapply through the day. However, you need to take that sunscreen with you and give yourself another application every two hours unless you swim or get physical with a run or maybe playing some volleyball, etc., where sweat or water robs you of that protection. In that instance, it’s to your advantage to reapply that sunscreen every hour to be safe.
One last thing, you don’t want to use a sunscreen that you previously used from last summer even though the expiration date is still good. Those ingredients break down once exposed to air.
If you do get burned from the sun, then I hope you try my DIY recipe for Calming Relief for Sunburn to soothe it.
If you keep this skin care advice on sunscreens in mind, hopefully you’ll be better protected from those aging rays and possible skin cancer!