Are you the type of person who is always making sure they have plenty of sunscreen on before they brave the outdoors – or – the type who thinks it doesn’t really matter, forgets to put it on, or only makes a point of using it when going to the beach? If you are the latter, you are not alone. There is a large part of the population who just kind of brushes it under the rug or only uses it occasionally.
The biggest motivation to wear sunscreen should be to help prevent skin cancer, especially since skin cancer has been on the rise. If skin cancer prevention isn’t a good enough reason to use sunscreen (although it clearly should be) and you need some additional reasons, here you go:
- It is a scientific fact that the ozone layer is depleting which puts your body even more at risk for harmful UV rays.
- It helps to protect skin from premature aging and wrinkles. Who wants to look older if they don’t have to?
- It helps prevent skin discoloration and brown spots.
- It helps reduce blotchiness and the appearance of red facial veins.
Crucial Things to Know About Sunscreen:
- Use a sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher. When applied correctly, sunscreen with SPF 30 or more will block out 96% of UVB rays. You won’t be able to block out 100%, regardless of what type you buy, but you are doing great if you are at 96%.
- If time permits, you should be applying sunscreen 30 minutes before you go outdoors. This will allow the ingredients to bind to your skin. Put it on regardless though…even if you don’t have that much time before leaving the house.
- You have to reapply sunscreen it throughout the day – ideally every 2 hours. You will not be protected all day if you only apply it in the morning.
- Sweating, swimming, and humidity can decrease the effectiveness of sunscreen. Re-apply more often than usual.
- Just because you haven’t burnt your skin to the shade of a lobster, it doesn’t mean it isn’t damaged. Just getting a regular tan is also wreaking havoc on your skin over time.
- Ensure the sunscreen you are using has not expired, as it will no longer work because the active ingredients will deteriorate.
- You don’t just need to use sunscreen when it is sunny – you need to use it year-round in all types of weather. It should become part of your daily routine. Even if it is foggy out, the UV rays are still affecting you.
- Don’t rely on makeup that has sunscreen in it. It is better than using nothing, but it will not be as effective as sunscreen that is applied as a product on it’s own.
- Instead of focusing on the sun to get your required amount of Vitamin D, ensure your diet includes things like fish, eggs, dairy, liver, eggs.
- Check with your doctor to see if any of your medications will make you more sensitive to the sun, as there are some that have the potential to make your skin burn more easily and/or become irritated.
The bottom line is: protect your youth and your health – use sunscreen. No excuses! Your future-self (and any facial cosmetic procedures you have had) will thank you for it.