The Importance Of Using SPF

Summer is in full swing and the beautiful sun rays are a constant reminder that we must look after our skin. Skin damage is all too common and although you may not be able to visibly see all the damage, constant exposure to UVA and UVB rays can be worrying. By protecting your skin, you can prolong the ageing process and help to maintain healthier skin. I’m not saying “stay indoors” as vitamin D that we need from being outside is important too. That’s the beauty about SPF, we can put our mind at ease and we can still enjoy the beautiful outdoors happily.

There are two types of Ultraviolet rays – UVA and UVB (long and short UV rays respectively). I’m sure these are familiar to you. UVA rays penetrate the skin deeper than UVB but that doesn’t mean you don’t need protection from both. If you are not protected from UV radiation, you are at risk to premature skin ageing, skin cancers and eye damage (including cataracts). Fair skin is also at more risk. Did you know that UV rays can also penetrate glass and clothes too? So, driving in a car does not shield you from the sun. The easiest thing to put your mind at rest is SPF! We are lucky that we can reduce our risk by this!

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Skin Protection Hacks

The guidelines online (including the Skin Cancer Foundation and NHS) state that SPF should be applied 15-30 minutes before exposure to the sun. It should also be reapplied every 2 hours, or when washed off by water.

Wear a hat to protect your head from burning and to shade you from the sun. Also wear sunglasses to protect your eyes.

The higher the SPF the better – this just means the time delay from the rays reaching you.

Do NOT use tanning booths.

Seek the shade when outdoors, especially between 10am and 4pm.

Even on a cloudy day, UV rays can penetrate the skin so use SPF all year round! UV rays are present in all daylight hours!

Top up your SPF throughout the day using a SPF spray for quick application on the go. This is better than nothing!

Apply 2-3 tablespoons of SPF every time you apply it.

Examples of great sun protective clothes are tightly knitted fabrics, heavy denim, synthetic fibres such as polyester/lycra/nylon/acrylic. Bleached cottons absorb more rays. Shiny fabrics tend to reflect more UV rays so this is a good option.

Another option is to wear clothes with UPF (ultraviolet protection factor). For example, a UPF of 30, means that just 1/30th of the sun’s UV radiation can reach the skin. Laundry additives can also be used in your washing machine to wash higher UPFs into your clothes.

Protect your moles too and check your body including any moles regularly for changes.

The NHS website recommends using at least SPF 15, with a broad spectrum (UVA and UVB) and at least a four-star UVA protection. The stars indicate the level of UVA rays absorbed by the sunscreen in comparison to UVB rays. A higher star rating is better and this can range from 0 to 5.

Strike a balance between exposing your skin to the sun and living your life to get some vitamin D.

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Some Products I Like

Here are some beauty products I have been enjoying using lately. Whilst an SPF in a tinted moisturiser or foundation is not nearly as good as a sunscreen, it is great for popping to the shops or wearing on top of a sunscreen for some added protection. I would recommend wearing SPF EVERY day of the whole year!

MAC Studio Waterweight Foundation SPF30

This is a broad spectrum UVA/UVB SPF 30 Foundation

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Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturiser SPF 20

Broad spectrum UVA / UVB SPF 20

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Ultrasun Professional Face Protection SPF 30

Broad spectrum UVA / UVB SPF 30

The Ritual Of Karma Sun Protection Face Cream SPF 30

Broad spectrum UVA / UVB SPF 30

Garnier Ambre Solaire Sensitive Advanced Sunscreen SPF 50+

Broad spectrum UVA / UVB SPF 50+ cream

La Roche-Posay Anthelios Ultra-Light Sun Cream Fluid SPF 50+
Broad spectrum UVA / UVB SPF 50+ cream

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Do you wear SPF everyday?

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3 thoughts on “The Importance Of Using SPF

  1. Important and educational post – thank you! It’s too easy to forget to reapply SPF when on a long day out in the sun! I’m one of those people that get very easily sunburned though so I make sure to always be protected before I make my way out in the sun! xx

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