All Your Sunscreen Questions Answered

I tried millions of beauty tips before with no results for my dull oily skin before I tried this & people really started noticing... 

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Sunscreen is my go-to skincare agent that I can't live without.  I know you guys have lots of question about sunscreens so lets talk about them one by one.
  • Do I really need sunscreen? 
Yes you do, no matter who you are, how you look & where you come from, what your ethnicity is, you need a sunscreen. period.

  • Why do I need a sunscreen?

Because Sun is there. That's it. Without sun the life forms in earth (including you) won't survive so sun is gonna be there forever (atleast throughout your life time) & sun rays are damaging to your skin; so you need a sunscreen to shield your precious skin from the harmful effects of UVA & UVB. UVA & UVB are the two principal sunrays we'll be talking about. UVA , the ray with longer wavelength will further damage your DNA & can penetrate the dermis layer (inner layer) of your skin which can cause cancer (Melanoma) & sppeds up ageing. UVB are short wavelength rays that will simply cause tanning on short term exposure but will do more harm if left for long.

  • I have dark skin. I've heard dark skin is protected from sunlight. Do I still need sunscreen?
Unfortunately, yes. although you have heard it right; dark skin has a heavier concentration of melanin which actually shields your skin from damaging sun rays but only to a certain extent. Recently, its been noticed that even population with dark skin are falling victims of melanoma (most aggressive form of skin cancer); maybe because the pollution has damaged the ozone layer so much that even our natural melanin is failing to defend our skin from the UV. According to Flitzpatrick scale (skin classified according to its color) , the darker ones (from type IV to VI) can use a less spf but cannot go completely without it.

  • What is spf? Which spf should I wear?
SPF reads Sun Protective Factor & the rating refers to how well it protects & the calculation is simple, higher the spf; higher the protection. The rating can go from SPF 2 to SPF 50+. Darker skinned people can use SPF 18 to SPF 30 (depending on how sunlit area they face) & lighter skinned people need higher protection like SPF 50 or more (SPF 50+). Also SPF is only the rating that shows the sunscreens efficacy in preventing UVB, the shorter wavelength rays; it does not provide protection from UVA, the more harmful ray.

  • So what do i do about UVA?

Fret not, we even have a new rating system for UVA & probably you've already seen it. Its called the PA rating which can go from PA+ to PA +++++. Higher the '+', stronger the protection is. Ideally for Indian summers, PA +++ will do well.

  • So if I wear SPF 15 sunscreen first & then I follow up with SPF 30; will I get protection of SPF 45?
Sorry, no SPF is not additive. if you apply sunscreens of different SPF, they don't add up to provide you the additive amount of protection. You can only achieve the highest SPF you've used in your sunscreen & in this case, you will have a protection of SPF 30 only. Just like that, if you put on SPF 15, then SPF 50+ & then SPF 30 then accordingly you'll have protection of SPF 50+ (the highest you've put on) & the same is true about PA rating.

  • My moisturiser contains SPF 30. So can I go without my sunscreen now?
No, for optimal protection you need to use a sunscreen. I don't know why but so far I'm concerned SPF in moisturisers or creams or other cosmetic products do not provide adequate protection. Its always better to wear a sunscreen along with your daily moisturiser. For day makeup, wear your sunscreen under it.

  • My skin is oily, what kind of sunscreen should I use?

Some sunscreens do make skin oilier I agree. But there are always 'Non Comedogenic' (does not clog pores) sunscreens. La Roche Posay has a great range of such sunscreens that work for oily skin.

  • Is Sunscreen different from Sunblock?
Usually they are used as synonyms but they are a bit different. Sunscreens are chemicals that are partly absorbed to the skin's upper level (stratum corneum & epidermis) & absorbs the rays themselves thus protects the skin but Sunblocks physically block the rays from penetrating skin (Zinc Oxide is such an ingredient). Most sunscreens today are formulated with both such ingredients.

  • How often should I use sunscreens?
Ideally, three times a day & more repeatations needed if you sweat a lot & are working outdoors.

  • Does that mean I need sunscreen even in indoors?

Yes yes yes. If indoor plants can still photosynthesise in background light & grow, think how much your skin absorbs sunlight even if you're indoors. So please use sunscreen even in indoors.

IF you have any further question please write on the comments section.

To buy sunscreens, these websites will be of great help

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