Skin Care – Guidelines for Properly Applying Sunscreen

sunscreenEveryone knows about the importance of using sunscreen for skin care—not only throughout the summer, but throughout the year as well. Recently, the FDA has specified some new advice about which sunscreen to use, and how to apply it correctly. This advice is as follows:

Prior to Applying Sunscreen, Utilize an Antioxidant Serum

Many sunscreens have zinc oxide in them, which might create free radicals (particles that harm your DNA) whenever they are exposed to the sun. Scientists claim that zinc oxide causes no cosmetic damage to the skin, and that it is safe to use. These experts say that UV rays pose more of a risk to people than free radicals. However, to get more from a bottle of sunscreen, it is best to apply an antioxidant serum in the morning, as this could help to combat free radicals (in fact, some sunscreens already contain antioxidants). Also, even on cloudy days, it is essential to use sun protection, because rays from the sun can still damage the skin and lead to health problems, like cancer.

Use Double the Amount

An ounce of sunscreen (or the amount required to fill a shot glass up) is regarded as sufficient to cover the whole body. However, the recent FDA advice suggests that it is best to apply the equivalent of two shot glasses. It is easy to apply sunscreen without properly covering the whole body (often, many people end up with odd areas of burnt skin).

By using double the amount, people will be able to check that they have not missed any parts of their body. Also, people are advised to apply sunscreen twenty minutes before they go outdoors, so it has sufficient time to soak in and begin to work correctly. For best results, it is best reapply sunscreen to the body every 90 minutes.

Do Not Dry Off

Although, sunscreen is often water resistant for 40–80 minutes, it is never completely waterproof (now, the FDA will not permit any sunscreens to have labels saying otherwise). Essentially, once people dry off with a towel, they are removing all of the sunscreen. Thus, instead, it is best to let the water form beads on the skin. Doctors say that this will protect the sunscreen and keep people cool for longer. Those who are taking medication, such as birth control pills, will be more sensitive to UV rays, so adequate protection is crucial throughout these times. For those who have questions, it is useful to speak to a doctor, prior to sun bathing for long periods.

Everyone has seen and read lots of reports concerning skin cancer, and other health problems related to the skin. However, many people still fail to use sufficient sunscreen, or take the necessary precautions to protect themselves from UV rays. Now, summer is upon us and we all wish to be outdoors enjoying the sunshine. Nonetheless, it is vital to protect ourselves properly, so we can continue to enjoy sun bathing well into the future.