You don’t really need me to tell you that you should be wearing sun protection daily, no matter what the weather is? With it officially Spring, it’s time that everyone up their sun protection game.
Here are your basics on sun protection.
The acronym SPF stands for Sun Protection Factor. And there are two types of topical protection….Chemical and Physical.
Chemical protection contains ingredients like Oxybenzone, Avobenzone, Octisalate and Octinoxate. The chemicals “absorb” the UV (Ultraviolet) rays, protecting the skin. A Physical protection contains the ingredients, Zinc Oxide and Titanium Oxide. With a Physical protection, the minerals “reflect” the UV rays off the skin, thus protecting it.
There are 3 types of UV rays; UVA, UVB and UVC. UVA is the ray that ages us. Causing us premature lines, wrinkles, dark spots, etc. It is the longer ray, reaching the dermis, but the weaker ray. UVB is the ray that burns us. Causing redness, pain, possible blistering and permanent damage. It is the shorter ray, reaching the lower epidermis, but the stronger ray. UVC is mostly absorbed by the ozone and doesn’t reach the earth.
When you look at a bottle of sun protection, you’ll see a number like SPF 30. This number represents that, with the proper application, you’d be able to stay outside 30 times longer than you would without an SPF on. With that being said, no matter what the number, when outside, you should be reapplying every 80 to 90 minutes. And, right after swimming and excessive sweating. This number also represents that it’s only protecting you against UVB NOT UVA. This means you must look for a sun protection that says BROAD SPECTRUM. This will protect you from both UVA and UVB.
Please be aware that there is no such thing as a waterproof SPF. However, there is such a thing as water resistant. Labels must now state 40 minutes or 80 minutes water resistant. The FDA no longer allows claims of “sweat-proof”, “waterproof” or “sunblock”. Also know that the SPF in your moisturizer or foundation IS NOT ENOUGH. It’s not the same as what you would get from a straight SPF. Apply your SPF first, then your moisturizer or foundation.
Every year nearly 5 million people are treated for skin cancer and there are about 76,000 new cases and 9,000 deaths from melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer. So forget about how the sun will make you look, it can be detrimental to your health.
Now that you know the basics of sun protection, we’d want to see you in action. Photograph yourself using sun protection, post it on social media and tag it #thalgousaspfselfie