If you think that just because summer is coming to and end that you can throw your bottle of sunscreen in the back of your medicine cabinet, or store it in a suitcase until your next trip, you couldn't be more wrong! Read on while we discuss a few common myths about sunscreen! A few freckles on your chest and back now
is a precursor to more sun damage in the future!
Myth about sunscreen #1 - "You only need sunscreen if you're sunbathing."
This is wrong! You actually should be wearing sunscreen on a daily basis (especially on your face!). The key here is that you need to differentiate between a simple walk around the block that is 10-15 minutes, and something where you might have longer exposure, even a long car ride. We do need a little light to get adequate sources of Vitamin D in our system, so if you're only going for a quick walk, opt to get some healthy Vitamin D. If you're going out for extended periods of time, or even on a long ride, opt to apply the sunscreen.
Myth about sunscreen #2- "If it's rainy or cloudy, sunscreen isn't needed."
Don't be so quick to jump to this conclusion. There are some factors that play into your decision on whether or not to apply sunscreen- mainly the UV index. If the UV index is over 5, then you should apply sunscreen. UVA (the aging rays) are at the same level, all day, every day, and experts say that cloud cover won't protect you from this. Check online daily for the UV index to help you make your decision.
Myth about sunscreen #3- "If I'm in the water, I don't need sunscreen."
We hear this often, especially from clients who want to continue to laser over the summer. "But I was only in the pool, I wasn't laying out!". You really need to submerged in several feet of water in order to get UV protection. If you're swimming in only a few feet, or laying on a float in the pool in only a few inches of water, then yes, you need to apply your sunscreen. In fact, the sun's UV rays can be amplified, so apply sunscreen even when swimming.
Myth about sunscreen #4- "If I am not sunburned, I haven't done damage to my skin."
Just because there is no short term damage to your skin, doesn't mean that the long term effects won't show up years down the line. Sun damage is caused by free radicals, and they are invisible- we can't see them. Even if you have no signs of sunburn, you can accrue damage to the skin each and every time you go outside. Long term effects can take 10-12 years to show. This is where proper use of sunscreen (especially in those areas with lots of sunny weather year round), as well as proper use of free radical fighting skincare come into play. Using Vitamins A, C, and E in serums and other topicals is extremely important.
Do you have any questions about sunscreen and how often you should be applying it? Comment below!