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6 Facts about sunscreen products

16 May 2017
by Linda Canter

Summer is coming. The sun is shining more, the temperature rises and we go out more. However, it also means that it is time to protect our skin with sunscreen. This is important to prevent skin -cancer, -aging and -pigmentation. But what do we actually know about sunscreen?

1. You have to put on sunscreen frequently

Reapply sunscreen every two hours to ensure good protection. This is necessary because the protective layer fades because of sweating and by drying yourself with a towel. This also counts for products that are waterproof or have a high Sun Protection Factor (SPF). Also make sure that you use a sufficient amount of sunscreen, lotion or spray and to spread it evenly in time to allow the product to get into your pores before going into the sun. Only then the SPF of the product applies.

2. You also get a tan with sunscreen

Many people want a tan but are afraid they will not get it because of the use of sunscreen products. But this is not true. Even a product with a high SPF does not block all the UV rays so that you get tanned without burning fast.

3. Clouds and shadows do not keep all UV rays out

The effects of UV radiation on cloudy days or in the shade are often underestimated. Also then you can burn and hereby it is important to apply sunscreen. Clouds actually only keep out a part of the UV radiation and a large portion of the sunlight is reflected by sand, water and buildings.

4. Also sunscreen products have an expiration date

Sunscreen products have an expiration date because the SPF decreases every year. That half of a bottle of sunscreen you have from last summer no longer has the same SPF as indicated on the bottle. Moreover the protective effect decreases when you leave the sunscreen bottle in the sun.

5. Applying sunscreen is also important if you are not prone to sunburns

Also if you have a darker skin that does not burn quickly, you have to apply sunscreen. This because the sun radiates different types of UV. Two kinds go through the ozone layer and reach the earth: UVA and UVB. UVB rays can lead to burns, DNA damage and skin cancer. UVA rays do not burn the skin directly, but it causes the skin to age more quickly and increases the risk of skin cancer. So even if your skin does not burn quickly, protect it from harmful UV radiation by applying sunscreen.

6. Stay out of the sun when you are burned

When you are burned, it is best to stay away from the sun fully. Clothes do not provide a 100% protection from the sun, especially light coloured clothing. It is best to avoid the sun and to apply soothing and refreshing aftersun products.

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