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Beauty Experts can never stress on the importance of sunscreen for your skin. You have been told time and again to never step out in the sun without protecting your skin from its harsh UV rays.
When you step out in the sun without a proper sunscreen, you are putting your skin in grave danger. Apart from the usual damage like tan, premature ageing, dark spots etc., the powerful UV rays penetrate the layers of your skin and alter its DNA structure, which can even lead to skin cancer!
We are sure you must be soon heading out to buy one after reading this. But wait a second. Nowadays, we are spoilt for choices in every field. How would you know which is the right sunscreen for you?
Here, this article will give a lowdown to what factors must be considered before investing in a good sunscreen.
The first thing that should be considered while buying a sunscreen is the SPF or the sun protection factor. What is that, you ask? Fret not and read on.
What Is An SPF/ Sun Protection Factor?
SPF is a measure of how well a sunscreen will protect your skin from the harmful UVA and UVB rays that cause damage. There are different ranges of SPFs available in the market - starting from SPF 15. Sunscreen with SPF 15 will allow you to stay in the sun without burning for 150 minutes.
It will block 93% of the UVB rays. Skin without any protection will start burning in about 15 minutes approximately.
In comparison, SPF 30 blocks 97% of the UVB rays, busting the myth that higher SPF will give you higher protection.
SPF is not what it seems to be. Thinking that a sunscreen with SPF 15 will give you double the protection from a sunscreen with SPF 30 is common. But it doesn't work that way.
Instead of opting for a higher SPF, dermatologists suggest that the most important factor in sun protection is the re-application of the sunscreen often. It doesn't matter if you are wearing a sunscreen with SPF 15 or 50, if you don't re-apply after every 2 hours, it's of no use.
Important Factors To Be Considered While Choosing A Sunscreen
Another important factor to be considered while choosing a sunscreen is it's durability. It should be water-proof, sweat-proof and be able to stay on for 2 hours untill re-application.
Also, the amount of sunscreen you apply is very important. Most people tend to under-apply them. Using 1/4th or just 1/2 the amount of sunscreen will only provide you half the protection.
If you have applied half of the recommended amount of sunscreen with SPF 30, it will only give you protection of SPF 15. The proper amount of sunscreen to be applied, according to dermatologists, is 2 mg/sq cm of the skin area.
In the end, Whatever products you choose, make sure they are water resistant. Apply the sunscreen at least half an hour before stepping out in the sun, to give it ample amount of time to sink into your skin. Also, never, NEVER forget to re-apply your sunscreen every two hours once. Protect your skin against the sun always and it will serve you well for life.