Sunscreen is arguably one of the most important steps in any skin care routine. It prevents aging by blocking UVAs, protects the skin from damaging UVBs and keeps you looking younger, longer, but only if you choose the right one and apply it correctly!
Stated SPF VS Actual SPF
Some sunscreens state their SPF as higher than it actually is! In 2015 choice.com.au wrote an article on how they tested some common Australian sunscreens and not all of them delivered the Sun Protection Factor that was stated on the bottle. Make sure your sunscreen isn’t out of date and has been stored correctly (not in a hot car) in order to maximise its effectiveness.
“Broad Spectrum” vs PA (Photo Aging) rating
Broad Spectrum sunscreens show that they offer UVA protection, however PA rating shows you how much! PA rankings can be shown as PA+, PA++ PA+++ or PA++++, with more plus symbols meaning more protection. The PA rating system is used in Japanese and Korean sunscreens, however some western brands are now also starting to add the PA rating system.
How much to use
Obviously the size of your face and body might vary, but in general the agreed amount for the average adult is 1/4 tablespoon for the face – this is based off of 2mg of sunscreen per square centimetre of skin in order to meet the stated SPF. Try measuring out 1/4 tablespoon of sunscreen sometime – you’ll probably be surprised at how much this is!
Sunscreen should ALWAYS be the first and most important step in any skincare routine. Which one do you use?
Most important though, is you actually wear it, every day!