Likely you know or have heard that applying sunscreen is an important part of your daily skincare routine. But beyond that basic principle, how much do you know about the why, how, when, and what of sunscreen for your face?...
Why exactly is it so important?
What are the risks if you don’t?
How much should you use?
What kind of sunscreen should you choose?
When do you wear it – just when it’s sunny or you’re going outside?
Fortunately, helpful research exists to understand the risks and benefits of using sunscreen properly on your face, and there are some simple basic principles to follow when selecting and applying your sunscreen. We are doing a 3-part blog series to give you the scoop on these questions and help you find your facial sunscreen flow!
So let's dive in to WHY sunscreen on your face is so important every day...
There is not much debate about whether the UV radiation from sun exposure causes damage. These quick stats provide a sobering picture of the risks from sun damage…
Clearly the stakes are high when it comes to sun damage. So sunscreen is an essential part of your daily skincare regimen. Even when the sun is not visible, 80% of its UV rays still hit your skin, says the American Academy of Dermatology. But unfortunately only about 20% of Americans apply sunscreen when it’s cloudy. Do you? Bare skin without sunscreen, whether on a sunny or cloudy day, leaves you vulnerable to the risks and outcomes detailed above.
Radiation from the sun includes both UVA and UVB rays. A broad spectrum sunscreen is the only kind that will protect from both UVA and UVB rays.
UVB rays are the kind that can burn. The SPF number on sunscreen only applies to these rays, so be sure not to neglect protecting yourself from UVA rays as well. The tricky thing about UVA rays is that they do not cause tanning, so it is easy to be unaware of how much exposure you are getting. But they do cause premature skin aging by breaking down collagen and elastic tissue, contributing to the formation of skin cancers, according to Robyn Gmyrek, MD, a board-certified dermatologist. In order to fully protect the delicate skin on your face, neck, and chest from wrinkling, sagging, hyperpigmentation, and cancer, you need a broad spectrum sunscreen that protects from both types of UV rays (more on how to choose a sunscreen in an upcoming post!).
So if you want to avoid visible signs of aging and skin cancer, consistently using sunscreen is your best insurance against these unwanted outcomes!
Stay tuned for Parts 2 and 3 of this series as we dig further into how to apply sunscreen effectively and which kind to use.
Our team of esthetics instructors!