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Will high SPF protect my skin better? Let’s find out

In the wonderful world of skincare, one thing we can all agree on is the year-round importance of sunscreen. When the sun is shining, it's natural to reach for a higher SPF (sun protection factor) and think you're giving your skin the best care. However, let's dive into the sunny side of things – SPF is all about measuring how effectively your sunscreen shields you from those UV rays. Wander through the sunscreen aisle, and you'll spot SPF numbers ranging from 6 to a whopping 100+. But here's the uplifting truth – a higher number doesn't necessarily mean it's a superior choice for you.

In This Article

What The SPF Number In Sunscreen Actually Means?

UVA, UVB And Blue Light: What Are They?

Let's break down the SPF mystery and understand what really matters in keeping your skin safe.

What The SPF Number In Sunscreen Actually Means?

The SPF (Sun Protection Factor) number on your sunscreen bottle is more than just a numerical value. It's your shield against the sun's harmful rays. Contrary to popular belief, a higher SPF doesn't mean you're invincible against sun damage. SPF primarily indicates the level of protection against UVB rays – responsible for sunburns. For instance, SPF 30 filters about 97% of UVB rays, while SPF 50 filters around 98%. The key is not just the number but how diligently you apply and reapply your sunscreen.

Moreover, this factor also helps determine how long you can stay out in the sun without getting sunburnt. In case your skin is sensitive, an spf 50 sunscreen is your best bet before the rays start affecting your skin post 50 minutes.

The idea is to reapply your sunscreen every two hours. Most often than not, we don’t apply enough on  our skin assuming it’s going to do wonders. However, for complete protection, apply your sunscreen diligently and thoroughly, we would say.

UVA, UVB And Blue Light: What Are They?

Sunburn, redness, skin damage? What’s the cause? UVB rays. On the flip side, UVA rays venture deeper into your skin leading to premature ageing, causing lasting damage. It’s UV-Squad’s mission to help you find the best defence against the entire spectrum of harmful rays.

For optimal sun protection, be on the lookout for sunscreens proudly flaunting the "broad-spectrum" label. This designation signifies that the product is geared not only to shield you from the immediate threat of sunburn (UVB) but also to fortify your skin against the subtler, long-term effects induced by UVA rays.

Unlike UVA and UVB rays, which primarily affect the skin when exposed to sunlight, blue light emanates from our screens, casting its glow on our faces throughout the day and night. Studies suggest that prolonged exposure to blue light may contribute to skin aging, potentially leading to fine lines and wrinkles.

For example: Our Sunscreen Gel Hyaluronic Acid & Pro-Ceramides SPF 50 PA +++ is the best sunscreen for dry skin that protects your skin against the harsh UVA, UVB and blue light whilst keeping your skin hydrated.

On the other hand, is our superhero that has Niacinamide And Pro-Ceramides With SPF 50 PA+++. Clinically tested, this In Vivo sunscreen fights pigmentation and keeps your skin barrier healthy. Oh, and it wont leave any white cast!

In Vivo And In Vitro Testing Difference

Ever wondered how sunscreens prove their efficacy? In Vivo testing involves real-life scenarios, with human subjects exposed to sunlight wearing sunscreen. On the other hand, In Vitro testing occurs in a controlled environment, measuring the product's effectiveness without human involvement.

UV-Squad however does In Vivo testing. This rigorous approach guarantees that the products don’t just meet but exceed expectations, delivering tangible protection in real-world conditions.

Which SPF Is Best?

The eternal question – which SPF reigns supreme? While SPF 30 is considered a minimum for daily use, we encourage opting for SPF 50 or higher for prolonged sun exposure. However, it's not just about the number; consistency in application and reapplication is the key to unlocking the full potential of your sunscreen. Moreover, as the SPF number increases, chances are your sunscreen might start feeling greasier on the skin.

How to Choose The Right Sunscreen

Selecting the right sunscreen is a pivotal step in ensuring your skin receives effective protection against the sun's rays. Here's a comprehensive guide to help you navigate the sunscreen aisle.

SPF Level:

  • Choose a sunscreen with a minimum SPF of 30 for daily use.
  • Opt for SPF 50 or higher for prolonged sun exposure, especially during outdoor activities.

Broad-Spectrum Protection:

  • Look for sunscreens labeled "broad-spectrum" to ensure protection against all kinds of harsh rays.
  • This comprehensive coverage guards against sunburn (UVB) and premature aging (UVA) and blue light too.

Water Resistance:

  • If you plan to be in the water or sweat frequently, select a water-resistant sunscreen.
  • Water-resistant formulations provide extended protection during activities that may cause the sunscreen to wear off.

Skin Type:

  • Consider your skin type when choosing a sunscreen. For oily or acne-prone skin, opt for gel-based or non-comedogenic formulas. The best sunscreen for oily skin, you ask? Hands down, our Sunscreen Gel Niacinamide & Pro-Ceramides SPF 50 PA+++ as it provides an ultra matte finish.

  • Those with dry skin may benefit from creams or lotions with added moisturising ingredients.

Application Texture:

  • Select a texture that suits your preferences, whether it's a lightweight spray, a nourishing cream, or a quick-absorbing gel.

Ease of Reapplication:

  • Consider the ease of reapplication when choosing a sunscreen.
  • Ensure to top up your skin every two hours if possible.

Is Sunscreen Enough?

While the answer for this might seem like a big YES, it’s actually not true. A sunscreen is a potent weapon in your skincare arsenal but it's not the sole warrior in the battle against UV rays. Pair it with protective clothing, seek shade during peak sun hours, and don stylish accessories like sunglasses and hats for an extra layer of defence. A holistic approach to sun protection will work well during sunny days.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Q:1 Can I skip sunscreen on cloudy days?

A: Clouds don't block UV rays entirely. Incorporate sunscreen into your routine irrespective of weather conditions to maintain consistent protection. Moroever, covering your face isn’t enough. You need a sunscreen body lotion too to protect your skin.

Q:2 Does SPF make your skin better?

A: Yes, SPF contributes to maintaining healthier skin by preventing sun damage, reducing the risk of skin cancer, minimising hyperpigmentation, preserving the skin barrier, preventing collagen breakdown, and combating photoaging. While SPF itself may not directly "improve" your skin, its protective benefits play a crucial role in promoting overall skin health.

Q:3 What happens if I use SPF 50 sunscreen every day?

A: Using SPF 50 daily provides robust protection against harmful UV rays, preventing sunburn and premature ageing. Consistent application helps maintain healthier skin. However, it's essential to follow proper skincare practices and reapply as needed for optimal effectiveness.

Written by Needhi Dhoker on Jan 09, 2024
Fashion & beauty fanatic. Tea or coffee dilemmas. John Mayer vibes. Spilling words and swooning over skincare.

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