Suncreen is seriously important, we probably don't need to tell you that. But it's not just during the summer months when you need to be vigilant. It's also imperative that we all wear an SPF during the winter months, too. That way, we protect ourselves from premature ageing, skin damage, and skin cancer.
But even if you do all of the above, there's a way many of us are being complacent with our sunscreen that we may not have realised. Just because you buy a sunscreen with an SPF of 50, it doesn't mean that you are fully protected and there's a good reason why. Keep scrolling to find out why you're applying your sunscreen wrong and how to do it correctly.
According to a study undertaken by Northwestern University, the patients who took part were unable to correctly identify how powerful or how much protection you get from the sun's UV rays. While it makes sense to believe that SPF 15 offers half the protection that an SPF 30 does, that's simply not the case. In fact, SPF 30 blocks out 97% of the sun's rays, whereas factor 15 protects you by 93%.
Essentially, as The Atlantic notes, there's a "psychological paradox." We believe that by choosing a high factor, we'll be completely protected and so tend not to reapply.
Question: Have you ever applied a high factor but still wound up burnt? Well, there's your answer. The truth is, when we opt for something of a lower SPF value, we will reapply more. So, what's the best way to ensure you're protected? Keep scrolling for our easy-to-use guide.
How to apply sunscreen:
Daily. According to SkinCancer.org, "Anyone over the age of six months should use a sunscreen daily. Even those who work inside are exposed to ultraviolet radiation for brief periods throughout the day, especially if they work near windows, which generally filter out UVB but not UVA rays."
Always apply at least 30 minutes before you expect to go into the sun. Once in the sun reapply every two hours. In terms of how much you need "apply 1 ounce—about a shot-glass full. … During a long day at the beach, one person should use around one-half to one-quarter of an 8-ounce bottle," says skincancer.org.
Reapplying is not always possible when you are sat by the window in your office with a full face of makeup, we hear you! And so does skincare brand Bioderma, which came up with the answer in the shape of this ingenious product.
Do you think you're applying sunscreen wrong? Let us know how you stay safe in the sun and make sure you shop some SPF before you head off on holiday.
Opening Image: ValentineNYC.com