8 Most Common Myths About Sunscreen

8 Most Common Myths About Sunscreen

Summer is here and comes full of outdoor activities with it! Excited to live the longest days of the year? So are we!
But! For the sake of your skin, hold  your horses on for just a bit and before going out to the beach or chill out in the pool take a few minutes to learn more about our most crucial ally against UV rays.  Here,  you’re going to learn how and why using sunscreen is so important for your wellbeing, plus how to protect your skin during summer days and the rest of the year. 
Despite scientific evidence, most people believe in these 8 myths about sunscreen. 

Why protecting your skin against UV  radiation is so important?

Unprotected exposure to sunlight can cause skin, eyes and immune system damage. UV rays harm skin layers, causing sunbum, premature aging (wrinkles, dark spots, dryness, sagging) and skin cancer.
Before we start, it is important to know there are more than one type of UV radiation. There are actually three types of UV rays: UVA, UVB and UVC. All of them represent a threat to the skin and wellbeing. VA and UVB  wavelength reaches the skin layers, and can lead some serious health problems. Now,  let’s begin!

Myth 1: Sunscreen and UV filters are the same.

Although the most active and important ingredients are ultraviolet filters, sunscreens may include sensory enhancers such as moisturizers, fragrances and emollients.  Furthermore, It’s important to know how UV filters work.
There are two types of UV filters when choosing the ideal sunscreen: organic and mineral. Organic filters absorb UVA and UVB rays converting them into heat, while mineral filters sit on top of the skin reflecting out the radiation. Each sun filter provides a specific type of protection, and is common to find products composed with a combination of filters to ensure the broadest protection. Always choose a broad-spectrum sunscreen that protects against UVA and UVB rays.

Myth 2:  Active ingredients in sunscreen are bad for your health.

There is not solid evidence sunscreen ingredients are bad for your health. If you are concerned about using chemical sunscreens with organic UV filters that absorb into the
skin, so the best option are mineral sunscreens. 

Myth 3: Sunscreen should be applied once a day.

False. Applying sunscreen once a day will not be enough to fully protect the skin. Sunscreens are less effective as the day goes. After taking a shower, swimming or sweating the effectiveness of sunscreen protection decreases.  Even though if SPF numbers are high or if you applied a sport or waterproof sunscreen. Ideally, sunscreen should be reapplied every two to three hours  if you are doing any outdoor activities.

Myth 4: While wearing sunscreen you will not get enough Vitamin D.

False. Sunlight promotes the natural production of vitamin D which is essential to the human health. Even the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends 5 to 15 minutes of sun exposure from 2 to 3 times per week. Sunscreens do not block Vitamin D absorption, and are designed to filter out most of the sun UV radiation in order to avoid any damage in the skin. Besides, there is not scientific evidence than wearing  sunscreen daily leads to vitamin D deficiency.

Myth 5: Suntan lotion can be a replacement for sunscreen.

Have you ever heard  “safe or healthy tan”? Not true. Suntan lotions allow UV radiation to penetrate into the skin in order to obtain a quick tan. During a tanning  the skin tries to protect its cells from the UVA radiation, so a distribution of melanin occurred. As a result, the skin  looks darker .  Tanning lotions and oils  only protect from UVB rays (avoiding skin burning), and offering low to zero protection against UVA rays. This practice may be dangerous for your skin and health. UVA radiation contributes to the development of skin cancer, and  photoaging (wrinkles, fine lines, hyperpigmentation and
irregular texture). This scenario gets worse if you consider damage from UV exposure is cumulative.

Myth 6: Dark-skinned people don’t need to use sunscreen.

False. Without exception we all need to apply sunscreen. Protecting the skin from harmful and cumulative effects from radiation is for our responsibility, even those with dark skin. Even though people with darker skin has more natural protection from UV rays thanks to pre existing melanin, but they are still  susceptible to consequences from sun overexposure if  protective measures are ignored. 
Remember, the beauty of your skin depends on how much you take care of it!

Myth 7: Sun damage is only possible on sunny days.

False. Skin can be damaged even on cloudy or  rainy days. Even when snowy,  wearing sunscreen is recommended and crucial part to maintaining our skin health.  Here are the reasons:
Sunlight and radiation penetrate clouds , and clouds are not shields  to UV rays. UV rays reflect on concrete, sand, snow and water. We  may not feel the heat of the sun but the UV rays are coming from multiple directions to the skin. 

Myth 8: Sunscreen must be applied only if you  are exposed to the sun.

Even if you are not exposed directly to the sun or indoors apply sunscreen.  If you  are spending a lot of time by a window with direct sunlight you may want to think about sun protection. Apply sunscreen to protect  your skin from UVA rays. Lastly, we highly recommended  to use sunscreen while driving. Apply sunscreen 30 minutes before you start driving, using a broad spectrum sunscreen with a SPF of 15 or higher. 

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