06 August 2008

If you want to avoid wrinkles and skin damage, the best protection is to stay in the shade.

To get the most out of your sunscreen, follow these tips.
  • Choose a 'broad spectrum' sunscreen. This means it provides UVA and UVB protection. It should have an SPF of at least 15 and at least four UVA stars.
  • Try a small portion around the wrist. If you see any allergic reaction or skin problem, buy a different sunscreen. Repeat these two steps until find the right sunscreen.
  • Buy a special sunscreen for your face. If you have oily skin or tend to get clogged pores then buy an oil free formula. If you have sensitive skin buy a special formula.
  • Buy a special sunscreen for your scalp because it CAN burn.
  • Apply sun screen 30 minutes before you go outside, so that it can be absorbed by the skin and less likely to wash off when you perspire.
  • Shake well before use to mix particles that might be clumped up in the container. Consider using the new spray-on or stick types of sunscreen.
  • To apply sunscreen, squeeze a dollop of cream sunscreen onto your hand and put it somewhere in the place. Rub it all over the certain place, and if you need more, squeeze a little more. Rub it in until you can't see the white anymore. Even if you use a high SPF, you will burn if you miss bits and don't reapply frequently.
  • Apply sunscreen in the following places :
    • Under shirt/Bathing suit
    • Behind neck, Cheeks and nose
    • Under bathing suit straps
    • On legs, On feet, On chest, On hands, On arms, On lips (use at least SPF 30 chapstick for your lips), On shoulders, On ears
    • Or apply anywhere else the sun will touch your skin.
  • Use a thick layer of cream to get the SPF protection indicated on the bottle. The effect of sunscreen reduces after one to two hours in the sun, o make sure you apply more often than this.
  • CREAM sunscreen is the best, not spray. Although if you put cream sunscreen on, then spray over it it keeps the sunscreen on longer and helps in protection.
  • SPF 50 does not offer significantly more protection than a sunscreen with SPF 30. For this reason in Australia and America the highest SPF factor you will find is 30+.
  • The SPF scale is also not linear: SPF 50 does not prevent burns 2/3 times longer than a SPF 30, and in fact blocks only about 1.3% more UVB radiation than SPF 30
  • Swimming makes the skin more sensitive to the sun. Use a water-resistant lotion and always reapply sunscreen after swimming or strenuous exercise.
  • Sweating dissipates sunscreen. If you sweat in the sun or you're taking part in any physical activity outdoors, make sure you reapply the lotion or use a cream that isn't absorbed by the skin. Look for products containing titanium dioxide or zinc oxide.
  • Certain perfumes and creams can cause hypersensitivity to the sun's rays. To be safe, avoid wearing any products other than sunscreen when exposed to the sun.
  • Apply sunscreen often throughout the day if you work outdoors, and wear hats and protective clothing.
  • On a cloudy day 30 to 50 per cent of the sun's UV rays reach your skin, so it's still possible to burn. You may not feel the sun's rays if it's windy, but they still cause damage. Be sure to apply sunscreen.

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