Here is a good guide to why and how to apply sunscreen for optimal results.

When you’re not wearing sunscreen to protect your skin, UVB & UVA rays can cause the following damage:
– SUNBURN
– BROWN SPOTS
– FASTER SKIN AGING
– INCREASED RISK OF SKIN CANCER

How the sun affects your skin:
UVB: Penetrates skin less deeply than UVA
Is a primary cause of sunburn
Plays a key role in the development of skin cancer
Contributes to photoaging

UVA: Penetrates skin more deeply than UVB
Plays a major role in accelerating photoaging (wrinkles, skin roughening, blotchy skin color, Brown spots, poor skin tone, sallowness)
Can contribute to development of skin cancer

Skin protection guidelines:
– At minimum, a sunscreen should contain SPF 30 or higher and provide broad-spectrum protection (UVA/UVB)
– For maximum protection, it’s important to use your sunscreen every day, because UV radiation can reach the skin even on cloudy days and through glass windows
– Seek the shade, particularly between 10 AM and 4 PM
– Avoid tanning and UV tanning booths
– Cover up with clothing, a broad-brimmed hat, and UV-blocking sunglasses
– Apply 1 ounce (2 Tablespoons) of sunscreen all over your body 30 minutes before going outside; reapply every 80-90 minutes and after swimming or sweating
– Every month, examine your skin head to toe for changes

-Michelle Fink, MA

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