Summer is right around the corner – it officially starts June 20th – and the most important skincare product you should own is sunscreen! Sunscreen is one of the best preventative anti-aging products available. It not only prevents wrinkles and sun damage, but it also provides protection from dangerous UVA/UVB rays, which can cause cancer. It’s never too early or too late to start using sunscreen. Add it as the last step to your daily skincare routine after your moisturizer and start protecting your skin today.
Here are some details to consider when choosing the right sunscreen for you:
SPF 15, 30, 50, or 100?
While it’s true that higher SPF means higher protection, as SPF increases, the protection strength differences between them are minimal. SPF 15 can block 93% of the sun’s rays, whereas SPF 30 can block 97% of the sun’s rays, and SPF 50 can block 98% of the sun’s rays. As long as you find a sunscreen labeled “broad-spectrum,” which protects against both UVA and UVB rays, all are effective. However, the American Dermatology Association (ADA) does recommend using an SPF of 30 or higher.
Chemical vs. Physical (otherwise known as mineral)?
Chemical sunscreens work by absorbing the sun’s rays and reduce how much penetrates the skin. Chemical sunscreens tend to feel lightweight and smooth, are non-greasy, and don’t leave white casts on skin. Physical sunscreens contain zinc oxide and titanium dioxide and sit atop of your skin, acting as a protective shield to deflect the sun’s rays. Physical sunscreens are usually a thicker formula and best for sensitive skin types and babies.
Bottom line: It all comes down to your personal preferences. So find a formula you will enjoy using and remember to use it consistently and re-apply it liberally every two hours, for as long as you’re out in the sun (dermatologists recommend using 1/3 to ½ teaspoon of sunscreen for your face and neck and 1 oz (enough to fill a shot glass) for your entire body)
Here are our top 5 dermatologist recommended sunscreens:
- EltaMD UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF 46, 1.7 oz (starting at $37.00)
- Supergoop Unseen Sunscreen SPF 40, 1.7 oz (starting at $34.00)
- Neutrogena Ultra Dry-Touch Sunscreen SPF 55, 3 oz (starting at $7.99)
- La Roche-Posay Anthelios Face and Body Sunscreen Melt-In Milk Lotion SPF 60, 5 oz (starting at $35.99)
- CeraVe Hydrating Mineral Sunscreen SPF 30 Face Sheer Tint, 1.7 oz (starting at $16.99)