The Truth About Sunscreen!

June 29, 2021 4 min read

The Truth About Sunscreen!

The truth about sunscreen! 

Facts and Myths about one of the most important products you use should be using EVERYDAY!

There are some very popular truths and misconceptions about sunscreen. Let's clear some of those up today!!! 

 1. Sunscreen is not always necessary

Many people think sunscreen is only needed on very sunny days. If I can't see the sun, do I really need sunscreen?? The answer is yes.  If you are outside, you are being exposed to UV rays. Wear that sunscreen. And don't forget about your body. The tops of your shoulders, arms, and chest need just as much sun protection as your face. 

2. All sunscreen is the same

Most people may think that all sunscreen is similar and will do the same job when applied on to the skin. You may be surprised to know that there are various ingredients in sunscreen that do different things on the body to protect the skin and they protect against different levels of exposure to the sun.

3. Darker pigmented skin does not require the use of sunscreen

Yes, the more pigmented your skin (more melanin), the more protection you have from the sun BUT you are still at risk for a sunburn and skin damage. Sunscreen is still recommended. The melanin in one's skin still will not protect from long term sun exposure. And long term exposure can increase the likelihood of skin cancer. So again, put on that sunscreen!

4. Tanning beds provide a  base tan to protect against sun burns

This is a myth that I still can't believe somehow believe to be true. Tanning beds are a bad idea under ALL circumstances. I know we have all had our run with them (but hopefully not anymore!!!), but they have extreme concentrations of UVA light to darken the skin very quickly. That exposure to UVA light may tan the skin, but it will do nothing to prevent sun exposure and sun burns from UVB light.

5. Sunscreen works better than covering up and wearing clothes

Covering your face and body with a hat or layer or clothing is always a better option that having direct exposure to the sun , even with sunscreen. Wear a beautiful hat while at the pool. Not only are there so many great options out there, they are stylish as well!! Opt for a pool coverup when you aren't in the water that has flowing sleeves as opposed to something sleeveless. There are easy ways to cover up while still enjoying the summer pool and beach days. 

6. Sunscreen will prevent the body from absorbing vitamin D

It doesn't take much to get the proper amount of vitamin D exposure for the day. As little as 15 minutes can give you the amount of vitamin D your body needs. Sunlight can also penetrate clothing. So yes, sunscreen does block the rays, but as long as you aren't covered in head to toe sunscreen 100 percent of the time (chances are you aren't), it is more than likely you are getting the sunlight you need. So don't use this as an excuse to skimp on the sunscreen!

7. Makeup is all I need to protect my face

If you are taking the time to apply makeup before you go into the sun, take the time to apply that layer of sunscreen beforehand. Some makeups, BB creams and foudnations DO have a sunscreen, but if the SPF is low, apply a facial sunscreen beforehand. There are so many great ones out there that will not make your face white and will provide a nice smooth application that will still make makeup easy to apply.

My personal favorite is the:  EltaMD UV Physical Broad-Spectrum SPF 41 Sunscreen provides sun protection and lightly tints your complexion to enhance the skin's radiance. Lightweight and fragrance-free, this mineral sunscreen won't clog pores and is gentle on sensitive skin conditions. Apply under makeup as a base for added protection to the skin.

 8. You can't get a  tan while wearing sunscreen

Sunscreen will not completely prevent you from getting a tan. It will protect from most sunlight rays, but it's inevitable that some will still reach the skin. 

 Did you know a tan is the body's response to UV light exposure? Something to think about!! Make sure to purchase a sunscreen that blocks both UVA and UVB rays. 

Sunscreen will protect the skin from most light rays, but some will still reach the skin. This means it is still possible to get a tan while wearing sunscreeSome of the most popular ingredients in sunscreen are zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. These ingredients help to filter out UVA and UVB rays

There are also chemical sunblockers. The most common is avobenzone. 

9. One application of sunscreen will last me the entire day

Sunscreen loses its efficacy the longer it is on your skin. The duration of time in the sun and/or the pool and ocean will make the sunscreen lose its maximum efficacy hour by hour. That is why it is necessary to reapply every few hours!

10. Sunscreen is waterproof

Even if your sunscreen says waterproof, water resistant or sweat resistant, the truth is it still needs to be reapplied. Especially after getting into the water.

Also remember to wait 10-15 minutes after applying to get back into the water!

11. Sunscreen never expires

Check the label! Sunscreen does expire! So if you pull that sunscreen out of last summer's  beach bag to use again this summer, think again!! Over time, the active ingredients break down and may not work as effectively.

Christy Hall
Christy Hall

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