Today’s post is going to be all about sunscreens. This is the time of the year when we run to buy sunscreens and there are advertisements everywhere about sunscreens. But sunscreens should be used throughout the year, no matter what season it is. I am not an expert in this topic, but over the years, having had a few skin problems, I had a talk with my dermatologist and gained a little knowledge about sunscreens which I am sharing here now. So lets learn more about sunscreens.
Why SUNSCREEN is required?
There are two types of ultra violet radiations from the sun, UVA and UVB i.e, ultra violet A rays and ultra violet B rays. These ultra violet rays damages your skin, causes premature ageing and increases risk of skin cancer. Sun damage causes wrinkles and fine lines on your skin.
Ultra violet A rays
UVA rays causes damage to skin cells thereby causes premature ageing and wrinkles. UVA rays contribute mostly in speeding up ageing process and its related symptoms like fine lines, crow’s feet and other signs of ageing. UVA rays can penetrate through your skin even on a cloudy day. This is why we often hear that sunscreens should be used even during monsoons and night.
Ultra violet B rays
UVB rays are not as harsh as UVA rays but may cause equal damage as UVA rays. UVB rays are the rays that cause sunburn and tanning on your skin.
Both these UVA and UVB rays may cause melanoma and skin cancer when exposed to sun light for a long time.
How can you protect your skin from sun damage?
The only way to protect yourself from sun damage is by using SPF (Sun Protection Factor) lotion/cream EVERYDAY. SPF provides protection against UVB rays.
How to read SPF numbers ?
Here is how you can read SPF numbers,
If your sunblock cream/lotion specifies that it has SPF 5 then multiply the number by 10, which is
SPF5 = 5*10 = 50 mins sun protection
It simply means that you must reapply after 50 minutes.
Now lets get it real,
Reapplying every 50 mins, is practically not possible especially if you have a busy lifestyle.
So lets start with SPF 15,
SPF15 = 15*10 = 150 mins = 2 hours and 30 mins sun protection
SPF30 = 30*10 = 300 mins = 5 hours sun protection
SPF50 = 50*10 = 500 mins = 8 hours and 20 mins sun protection
There are sunblocks available with SPF 70 but use it only if you require sun protection for for such a long time, because sun blocks contain chemicals, which in turn does no good if you use it more than what you require.
Besides SPF, sunblocks also have PA which is UVA protection.
PA+, PA++, PA+++ denote the least, medium and highest amount of protection respectively. Make sure your sunscreen has both UVA and UVB protection. Anyone over the age of 6 months should wear sunscreen daily. While using sunscreen for babies, consult your doctor before using and use only products prescribed the doctor.
So when you shop for sunscreens, make sure to check the product for all the above mentioned protection. Again there are different types of sunscreens, some are matte, some are gel based and some are creamy. It is totally your choice when you have to choose the consistency of sunscreen.
I am glad that I was able to share the little knowledge I had about sunscreens. Again, I am not an expert in this topic, but I have tried to compile a few points from what I have learned over the years.
Image source : http://antiagingvancouver.com/preventing-sun-damage/
*P.S This is not a sponsored post.
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Thanks for reading,