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Are you getting your daily sunscreen dose right?

Sunscreen is your skin’s best friend when it comes to battling the harmful effects of the sun. However, there’s often confusion surrounding how much sunscreen one should apply on a daily basis. Many of us have heard the classic advice: apply a generous amount. But what exactly does that mean? Let’s understand more on that and decode the right amount of sunscreen for daily use.

In This Article:

What Is SPF?

How Much Sunscreen Should I Use daily?

What Is SPF? 

Before delving into the specifics of sunscreen application, it's vital to grasp the concept of SPF (Sun Protection Factor). SPF serves as a yardstick for a sunscreen's efficacy in shielding your skin from UVB rays, the main reason behind sunburns, skin damage, and potential skin cancer risks. Essentially, the higher the SPF value, the greater the level of protection it affords. However, it's crucial to bear in mind that SPF solely pertains to UVB defence and doesn't necessarily correlate with safeguarding against UVA rays, which also play a significant role in skin deterioration and premature ageing.

How Much Sunscreen Should I Use daily? 

According to a study conducted in 2016, it says that sunburns can lead to development of cancer later on. But by using broad-spectrum sunscreens, it is one of the most effective ways to prevent yourself from harsh UVA/UVB rays as per the Skin Cancer Foundation.

So, how much should you use? Experts recommend applying approximately a nickel-sized dollop (about 1/4 teaspoon) for the face and a shot glass full (approximately one ounce) for the body. This quantity ensures adequate coverage and protection.

When it comes to measuring the right amount of sunscreen for your skin, there are several methods to consider. You can opt for teaspoons, milliliters, grams, or even use your fingers as a guide. For example, applying 1/4 to 1/3 teaspoon on your face can provide adequate coverage, while shot glasses or coins can help gauge the amount needed for your body or face respectively. Additionally, selecting a broad-spectrum sunscreen with at least SPF 30 is recommended for comprehensive protection against UVB rays. However, layering SPF 15 sunscreen isn't equivalent to SPF 30, as even application plays a crucial role. Ultimately, the key is to apply the recommended amount consistently, regardless of the method chosen, to ensure effective sun protection for your skin.

Key Areas To Cover

When applying sunscreen, don’t forget those commonly overlooked areas. These include the ears, neck, tops of feet, and hands. Additionally, lips are often neglected but equally susceptible to sun damage. Opt for a lip balm with SPF protection to safeguard this delicate area.

The order of sunscreen application in your skincare routine can significantly impact its effectiveness. Generally, sunscreen should be the final step in your skincare regimen, applied after any serums, moisturisers, or treatments. This ensures that the sunscreen forms a protective barrier on top of your skin, shielding it from harmful UV rays.

Our top three best sunscreens for every skin type - that include Niacinamide & Pro-Ceramides Sunscreen Gel SPF 50 PA+++, Hyaluronic Acid & Pro-Ceramides Sunscreen Gel SPF 50 PA +++ and Vitamin C & Pro-Ceramides Fluid Body Lotion SPF 50 PA++++ are your cue to protection.

Say goodbye to harsh UVA, UVB and blue light with these spf 50 sunscreen. They work hard to build healthy skin barrier and if you need radiant or hydrated skin, these sunscreens are ‘it’.

Is It Truly Necessary To Reapply Sunscreen Throughout The Day?

The answer is unequivocally yes. While applying sunscreen in the morning provides an initial layer of protection, its efficacy diminishes over time due to factors such as sweat, water exposure, and natural skin oil production. To maintain optimal sun protection, it's essential to reapply sunscreen every two hours, or more frequently if engaging in activities that may compromise its effectiveness, such as swimming or heavy sweating. This ensures continuous coverage and reduces the risk of sunburn, premature ageing, and skin damage caused by prolonged sun exposure.

Steps To Use Sunscreen

Step 1: Wash Your Face

Start by cleansing your face with a gentle cleanser suitable for your skin type. Gently massage the cleanser onto damp skin using circular motions, then rinse thoroughly with lukewarm water and pat your face dry with a clean towel. Once your face is clean, you're ready to move on to the next step in your skincare routine.

Step 2: Apply Moisturiser (Optional)

After washing your face, you may choose to apply a moisturiser, particularly if your skin tends to be dry. Opt for a lightweight, non-comedogenic moisturiser that won't clog pores. Allow the moisturiser to absorb fully into your skin before proceeding to the next step.

Step 3: Dispense Sunscreen

Squeeze or pump out the desired amount of sunscreen onto your fingertips or the palm of your hand. For the face and neck, aim for about 1/4 to 1/3 teaspoon of sunscreen.

Step 4: Apply Sunscreen

Using your fingertips, gently dab the sunscreen onto various areas of your face and neck. Start from the centre of your face and work outward, ensuring even coverage. Pay special attention to areas prone to sun exposure, such as the nose, cheeks, forehead, and chin.

Step 5: Blend And Massage

Once you've applied sunscreen to all desired areas, gently blend and massage it into your skin using upward and outward motions. Continue massaging until the sunscreen is fully absorbed and there are no visible streaks or white residue.

Step 6: Extend To Other Exposed Areas

If body parts, such as your arms, legs, chest, or back are exposed to sun when you step out, then repeat the sunscreen application process for these areas. Remember to apply sunscreen liberally and evenly to ensure comprehensive protection.

Step 7: Reapply As Needed

Throughout the day, reapply sunscreen every two hours, or more frequently if you're sweating heavily or swimming. It's essential to maintain consistent sun protection, especially during prolonged sun exposure.

Step 8: Complete Your Routine

Once you've applied sunscreen to all exposed areas and allowed it to absorb fully into your skin, you can continue with your makeup or other skincare products as desired. Remember to prioritise sun protection as a crucial step in your daily skincare routine for healthy, radiant skin.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q:1 Is SPF 50 too much for everyday use?

A. The Skin Cancer Foundation has mentioned to use spf 50 sunscreen especially when outdoors where an spf 15 sunscreen is good enough for less time spent indoors and without severe exposure to sun.

Q:2 Can sunscreens remove tan?

A. Sunscreens primarily protect the skin from sun damage caused by harmful UV rays, including premature ageing, sunburn and the risk of skin cancer. While they can help prevent further darkening of the skin caused by sun exposure, they are not specifically designed to remove existing tan or hyperpigmentation.

Written by Needhi Dhoker on Feb 20, 2024
Fashion & beauty fanatic. Tea or coffee dilemmas. John Mayer vibes. Spilling words and swooning over skincare.

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