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I’m back with another hot topic in skincare: Sunscreen.
When you think of sunscreen, you probably think back to beach days where your mom slathered you in thick, goopy white lotion to prevent you from getting sunburned. It usually smelled like bananas or coconuts and came in a variety of colors, shapes, and sizes, and you probably hated wearing it! This used to be me too, but countless hours spent reading beauty magazines and blogs have taught me otherwise.
Now when I think of sunscreen I think of using it daily to prevent myself from developing skin cancer as a way of protecting future me.
Read on to find out why you need to be wearing sunscreen every day, even when it’s cloudy!
Skin Cancer Is a Very Real Threat
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there were over 80 thousand reported cases of melanoma – 8,885 of which were fatal – in 2015. By wearing sunscreen every day, you cut your chances of developing skin cancer in half! According to Melanoma.org:
“In 2011, the Journal of Clinical Oncology published a randomized, clinical study of over 1,600 people showing that regular sunscreen use reduced the incidence of melanoma by 50-73%. When used as directed with other sun protection measures, broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher helps prevent sunburn and reduces the risk of early skin aging and skin cancer (melanoma and squamous cell carcinomas) associated with UV radiation.”
So whether it’s to prevent skin cancer or to prevent wrinkles (or both!) you should always remember to make sunscreen a part of your daily routine.
Even When It’s Cloudy, Even In The Winter
The belief that you do not need sunscreen if it’s cloudy outside is a complete myth. YES, you can still get sun exposure during the winter and on cloudy days! The sun’s rays are so incredibly strong, up to 40 percent of the sun’s ultraviolet radiation reaches the earth on a completely cloudy day! (Skincancer.org)
Even on the coldest winter days, though the sun might not be as warm, the sun’s rays are still hitting you – so do yourself a favor and slather on that SPF!
Wondering what SPF means as well as the corresponding number? Don’t fret. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Sunscreens are assigned a sun protection factor (SPF) number that rates their effectiveness in blocking UV rays. Higher numbers indicate more protection.”
In order for you to get the most out of your sunscreen, make sure you are using one that has an SPF of at least 30 and is broad-spectrum, meaning it will block both UVA and UVB rays.
Here’s what COOLA Suncare has to say about the UVA/UVB rays:
UVA Rays: Penetrate deep into the dermis, the skin’s thickest layer
UVB Rays: Usually burn the superficial layers of your skin. It plays a key role in the development of skin cancer.
How Much Is Too Much?
If you think you’re not putting on the right amount of sunscreen, chances are you’re probably right.
Believe it or not, “Science has shown that for you to get an adequate amount of protection you need a teaspoon or two of sunscreen just for your face. Then, a shot glass full for your arms, another for your chest and abdomen, and so on,” said Ariel Ostad, a New York City dermatologist in an article on Allure.
Plus, you need to make sure to reapply if you are in the sun all day or in and out of water.
My Top Sunscreen Picks
Do I have you running towards your nearest drugstore to pick up sunscreen yet? As I mentioned earlier, your sunscreen needs to be broad-spectrum in order to best protect you against sun damage. Below are my top picks for both facial and body sunscreens that are tried and true. I will update as I come across more favorites.
This chemical sunscreen is formulated with Centella Asiatica, is great for sensitive and acne-prone skin because it helps with healing acne and reducing redness. It blends into the skin seamlessly and is formulated without parabens as well as EWG verified! I find my skin looks beautiful when I wear this with a pretty dewy glow. It’s not drying or white-cast causing at all. I currently use the unscented version but this version is great too.
If you love mineral sunscreens and are looking for a tinted version, this one is for you! I discovered this when I was preparing for my trip to Miami and I fell in love. It’s super moisturizing and smells really good. It has a light tint that leaves a slightly matte finish to the skin. Also, love that it’s SPF 50.
I love this sunscreen because it is non-comedogenic and is specifically formulated to not cause breakouts. It has SPF 55 and I think it’s the perfect, affordable everyday sunscreen for the summer. It dries with a natural-to-matte finish and is easily spreadable.
If you haven’t already heard me sing the praises of snail mucin, let me spell it out for you: if you want hydration and clear skin, you need to incorporate it into your routine! This product combines both snail mucin with sunscreen to create a beautiful, moisturizing, essence-like formula that I think is the perfect sunscreen for winter.
Such a cool idea for a product! I love this one because if I’m doing a full face of makeup it can be hard to reapply sunscreen. This comes in the form of a setting mist so you literally can just spritz it over your face to refresh your sun protection – so easy and way less time-consuming.
Hopefully, I’ve scared you into wearing sunscreen every day – trust me, your skin, your future self (goodbye wrinkles!) and your dermatologist will thank you! Set a promise to your future self to incorporate sunscreen into your daily routine, ASAP.
Do you have any favorite sunscreen products? Let me know in the comments below!
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