How To Choose A Sunscreen

We all know that sunscreen is the best defense we have against developing skin cancer, and it is also happens to be one of the best anti-aging products possible for preventing premature aging. When picking out a sunscreen, many of us primarily focus on SPF. And while this is certainly an important thing to consider, it's not the only thing. Read on to learn the full list of everything you should consider before purchasing a sunscreen, including how you should be applying it and ingredients you should be looking for. 

What To Consider

Ingredients: Physical sunscreens are your safest bet, which means you should be looking for ingredients such as titanium dioxide or zinc oxide. Both of these ingredients provide true physical barriers against the sun's damaging rays, and you should avoid products that contain oxybenzone or octinoxate (they are known to be harmful to the environment). We recommend ISDIN for a strong physical sunscreen that can also help repair existing UV damage using DNA Repairsomes that will be beneficial for anyone spending a lot of time outdoors such as golfers. Or iS Clinical's Eclipse PerfecTint for anyone looking for a touch of tint with their UV coverage.
Broad Spectrum: Sunscreens that protect against both UVA and UVB rays are a must. Both types of rays can cause skin cancer, and products that are labeled as broad spectrum will protect you from both. If it doesn't say broad spectrum, you are likely getting exposed to one of these harmful UV rays.
SPF: Not sure how high you should go? Keep it at 30 or higher, but In our professional opinion, you can never go too high with SPF. To give you some perspective, SPF 15 blocks 93% of UV rays, SPF 30 blocks 97% of UV rays, and SPF 50 blocks 98% of UV rays. And this doesn't take into account fairer skin types, swimming, or excessive sweating.

How To Apply

How much: The general rule of thumb when applying sunscreen to the entire body is one fluid ounce, although you can generally tell if you'll need more than that. But never dip below that amount. 
When to apply: Make sure you apply your sunscreen about 20-30 minutes before going outdoors. And make sure you reapply it after two hours outdoors. 
What about water-resistant?: While some sunscreens claim to be water-resistant, there is no such thing as waterproof. Some sunscreens are able to hold up better against water or sweat, but if you are swimming or exercising, reapply it after 40-80 minutes.

Additional UV Protection

Clothing: Even if you are planning a day at the beach or exercising, there is attire that can keep your skin covered. Bathing suit coverups are helpful for anyone who wants to wear a bikini, but bathing suits that provide the same coverage as a shirt are also available and will allow you to stay comfortable.
Shade: Spending a day outdoors doesn't necessarily mean spending a day in direct sunlight. Search out areas where you can find shade, either beneath a tree or a beach umbrella.
Don't forget the small stuff: keep your eyes covered with sunglasses and make sure you apply lip balm containing SPF. 

For more information about skin cancer prevention and anti-aging, contact us for a consultation and find out what treatments and products will work best for you.

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Posted by Sarah M. Kubrick