Five Important Points About Sunscreen

Even though sunscreen formulas have improved in the past 20 years, skin cancer rates have actually gone UP – here’s why:

  1. SPF rating is actually different for everyone. If your skin burns without protection in only 10 minutes, then an SPF 15 gives you 15 times the time it takes you to burn (15 x 10 minutes, or 150 minutes), or an SPF 30 gives you 30 times the time it takes you to burn (30 x 10 minutes, or 300 minutes).
  2. It doesn’t really matter if you use SPF 15 or SPF 50 (which is the highest rating the FDA allows), you still have to reapply after 2 hours in the sun, or after swimming or sweating because the sun and the acids in the outer layers of your skin will break down the sun protection.
  3. Be sure to apply the right amount, at the right time, for best protection. This means, one full ounce for your entire body on clean, cool, dry skin – at least 20 to 30 minutes before you leave the house for best protection. Most people only apply about a quarter of the amount needed for full protection, and they wait until arriving at their destination before applying. Sunscreen needs adequate time to bind to the outer layers of the skin to provide the best protection.
  4. Even though the label says “broad-spectrum” check the drug facts label to be sure it truly has broad spectrum ingredients on the Active Ingredients list: Zinc Oxide, Titanium Dioxide, or Avobenzone (Parsol 1789). Broad spectrum gives you the best protection from both burning (UVB) and aging, cancer-causing (UVA) rays.
  5. The most important thing to remember about sunscreen is to WEAR IT – every single day, no matter if it is sunny or cloudy outside!! People don’t realize that UVA penetrates through clouds and windows, and reflects off of concrete, asphalt, grass, water and snow.

Sunscreen is your NUMBER ONE anti-aging cream! And it is the easiest thing in the world to use … if you are having trouble finding one that isn’t greasy or stings your eyes, or if you are worried that sunscreen will make you break out, contact me for good choices … and to schedule an appointment to see the UV damage that is lurking underneath your skin.

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