How to select the Best Sunscreen?
If you will go to any drug store in search of the best Sunscreen, you will see a large variety and number of brands to choose from. Normally it is a common confusion for every one as which Sunscreen should I buy, that will be the best for my skin?
To get the proper idea about it we should know following terms and their proportion in the Sunscreen.
SPF: Sun Protection Factor.
Just check for higher number SPF. The higher will be the number of SPF; you will get better protection from Sun.
SPF is available from the levels 2-60. Normally it is recommended to have the Sunscreen of 15 and above levels.
For example if your skin burns in 20 minutes then the SPF 18 will allow you to stay in Sun 20 times longer without getting burn.
Now the question will be why every one is not going for SPF 30 or directly to SPF 50. You are right. SPF 50 will provide only 1% to 2% more protection than SPF 30. So you can choose the best as per your requirements.
Following chart will show you the comparison of two SPF ratings that are commonly used and popular among active outgoing people.
|SPF Against UVB Rays||% of UVB Rays Absorbed||Considerations|
|SPF 30||97%||Excellent general-purpose sunscreen for all activities and conditions. Contains fewer sun-blocking agents than higher SPF sunscreens, so skin can breathe and perspire more freely.|
|SPF 50||98%||Good for extended high-elevations exposure, thin-skin body regions (nose, ears) and children. Includes a high quantity of sun-blocking agents; may feel heavy, greasy, or warm on skin and reduce its breathability.|
UVA & UVB: Label of sunscreen always tells you about UVA or UVB protection.
Over exposure to UVA rays may cause skin cancer. UVA rays are even responsible for aging effect.
UVB rays may cause skin cancer but they are responsible for sun burns.
Hence it is always better to choose the Sunscreen with “UVA/UVB” protection or broad-spectrum.
Water Proof or Water resistant Sunscreens are also available in the market.
If you want to use the Sunscreen in water, you may choose Water Proof or Water resistant Sunscreen. Water Proof Sunscreen protects you for almost 80 minutes in water where as Water resistant Sunscreen will protect you only for 40 minutes.
You may choose Sunscreen after studying following table
|I||Always burns, never tans; extremely sun-sensitive skin||Pale white; red-headed, freckled, Irish/Scots/Welsh|
|II||Burns easily, tans minimally; very sun-sensitive skin||White to beige; fair-skinned, fair-haired, blue or green-eyed, Caucasian|
|III||Burns moderately, tans gradually to light brown; minimally sun-sensitive||Beige; average skin|
|IV||Burns minimally, tans well to moderate brown; minimally sun-sensitive||Light brown; Mediterranean-type Caucasians|
|V||Rarely burns, tans profusely to dark brown||Moderate brown; Middle Eastern, some Hispanics, some African-Americans|
|VI||Never burns, tans profusely||Dark brown or black; African-American|
When to apply Sunscreen?
For best results apply Sunscreen before 30 minutes of Sun exposure. After strenuous exercise or swimming, remember to apply it again. When you work out where you are maximum exposed to Sun, use protective hats and clothing in addition to that apply Sunscreen often through out the day. Experts say that you can apply it every two hours.
How to apply Sunscreen?
It will be always better to shake the container before using or applying Sunscreen. Try to apply it on every body part that is exposed to Sun. (That is ears, back, shoulders, back of knees and legs). Try to apply it thickly and thoroughly. It will be better to choose new spray on or stick types of Sunscreen. Be careful about your eyes while applying it.