Sunscreens are all the rage lately. Earlier, a lot of people were oblivious to the importance of sunscreen application. However, more and more people are now investing in sunscreens as a means to protect their skin from harmful UV rays.
A good sunscreen protects your skin from both UVA and UVB rays that are known to cause sunburns, premature ageing or even skin cancer. However, there are certain sunscreen rules that not many are aware of. So, there's a high chance you might be making a few sunscreen mistakes that could reduce the efficacy of your products. In this blog, we'll take a look at 9 common sunscreen mistakes that you might be making.
9 Sunscreen Mistakes Youre Probably Making Right Now
Here are the 9 top sunscreen mistakes that you might be making. If you already do any of these, try not to make the same mistakes in the future.
1. Not Enough Sunscreen - You apply sunscreen, but only a little bit. Well, that's not enough. If you want the sunscreen to actually do its work and protect you from UVA and UVB rays, apply a generous amount of sunscreen on your face and body. As a rule of thumb, always take 2 fingers worth of sunscreen for your face and neck and one ounce of sunscreen for the rest of your body.
2. You Don't Reapply - You don't reapply sunscreen because either is water/sweat resistant, or of a higher SPF. That's definitely not how it works, whether you have an SPF 30 sunscreen or an SPF 50 sunscreen, reapplication is a must. More importantly, even if your sunscreen is sweat or water-resistant, you need to immediately reapply sunscreen after swimming or towel drying.
3. You Only Check SPF - You only check SPF to determine the effectiveness of a sunscreen. While SPF indicates the sunscreen's ability to protect your skin from UVB rays, the PA index determines its strength against UVA rays. So, if you want full protection, always go for a broad-spectrum sunscreen and don't forget to check the PA rating of your sunscreen as well.
4. Don't Apply It Daily- You apply sunscreen only during summer or when stepping out in the sun. This is a big misconception that sunscreen should only be applied when facing harsh sunlight. In fact, UV rays are still present on cloudy or rainy days. They can even penetrate your windows and get into your home. Hence, it's imperative that you apply sunscreen daily whether you stay indoors or step out.
5. You Apply Sunscreen on Damp Skin - While an active ingredient like hyaluronic acid needs to be applied on damp skin, applying sunscreen in a similar manner reduces its efficacy. The sunscreen will get diluted and won't be as potent as it was formulated to be. So, always apply your toner,serum, moisturiser, etc at least 3-4 minutes before applying your sunscreen. And then wait for another few minutes before laying your skin with makeup.
6. You're Too Late In Applying Sunscreen -Chemical and hybrid sunscreens need at least 15 to 30 minutes to dry down and form a protective layer on the skin. While physical sunscreens act immediately, it's still a good idea to apply them at least 15 minutes before stepping out in the sun. So, don't apply sunscreen too late or in a rush. Give it enough time to activate and create a strong barrier that can either reflect sunrays or absorb them to protect your skin from all the harmful UV rays.
7. You Use The Same Sunscreen For Face And Body- The skin on your face is very different and much more sensitive than the skin on your body. So, if you're using a body sunscreen lotion or a simple sunblock for your entire body and face, it may cause irritation to your facial skin. Instead, analyse your skin, understand what it needs, and use a sunscreen with a formulation that suits your facial skin.
8. You Miss/Skip Spots You often miss or skip spots thinking it's not necessary. While applying sunscreen regularly on your face is a good idea, it is equally important to apply it all over your exposed skin as well. Although not as sensitive, your entire body's skin is susceptible to sun damage. So don't miss or skip applying sunscreen on your neck, elbows, ears, etc. In fact, use a lip balm with SPF for optimum protection.
9. You Don't Look for Active Ingredients- Sunscreen protects your skin from harmful UVA and UVB rays. But the benefits of sunscreen don't have to stop at that. Just with the addition of a few potent active ingredients, your sunscreen can offer multiple benefits to your skin. For example, the POND'S Serum Boost Sunscreen Gel range includes broad-spectrum sunscreens backed with the power of Niacinamide-C which not only protects your skin but also fades dark spots while giving brighter, glowing skin with no white cast. So, to get the best out of your sunscreen experience, look for the ones with active ingredients.
Apart from these, another big mistake that many make is relying solely on sunscreen for your skin’s protection. While sunscreen is a great start and an absolute must-have product, you also need to take other measures to keep your skin protected. These include wearing protective clothing, using sunglasses, wearing hats, trying to find shade, and avoiding the sun during peak hours i.e., between 11 am to 4 pm.
Well, now that you know about these sunscreen mistakes, you know what not to do in order to get the best sun protection possible. Avoid these mistakes and use sunscreen religiously, every day, without fail to protect your skin from sun damage, inside and outside your house.
Incorporate a good sunscreen with at least SPF 30 and a PA++ rating infused with the goodness of active ingredients like Niacinamide-C among others that double up the benefits of a sunscreen. That’s it, you’re all set to go out and enjoy the summer.