Sunscreen plays an important role to shield our skin from harmful sun rays. It is an absolute must for our daily skincare routine. After all, it protects our skin from sunburn, minimizes suntan, and sun damage by blocking and absorbing UV rays. But, the majority of people still believe that sunscreens must be worn only during the summer months as winters and monsoons witness a disappearing sun, mostly. The deceptive nature of the sun when it seems to disappear from sight makes us believe that there is no need to wear sunscreen during winters and monsoons. So, now is the time for a reality check. In reality, the harmful rays of the sun are all the same, be it any season.
Choosing the best sunscreen and its proper usage
Not just any sunscreen, we should choose a sunscreen based on its composition, sun protecting strength, consistency, and breadth to avoid sun-damaged skin from the harshest sun. While hunting for a good sunscreen, we must check if it provides broad-spectrum sun protection of a good SPF 50 PA++ or SPF 30 PA++ and a minimum of SPF 15 PA++ for the Indian weather. The ideal sunscreen is fortified with natural zinc oxide and other natural ingredients like cranberry, sunflower, calendula etc. Besides, it must offer a non-greasy, sweat-proof and water-resistant long-lasting formulation. Other factors to consider before choosing sunscreen include paraben, silicon, and cruelty-free formulation.
Talking about its proper usage, sunscreens must be applied at least 10 minutes before stepping outside and reapplied every two hours for acquiring its maximum efficacy. Even someone who applies makeup should use sunscreen first, followed by a moisturizer. Undoubtedly, this ritual should be followed irrespective of any season.
Here’s a roundup of the key reasons why sunscreen should be worn all year round.
Good sunscreens protect from UVA and UVB rays- Ultraviolet or UV rays has two types- Ultraviolet A and Ultraviolet B. The UVA rays penetrate deeper into the skin and cause premature ageing by causing wrinkles and skin discolouration. On the other hand, UVB rays are the ‘burning’ rays, responsible for causing sunburn. A good and effective sunscreen with the aforementioned features when used daily can protect the skin against both these harmful rays.
Limits appearance of sunburn- Excess exposure to UV rays without sun protection results in a long-lasting burn like sunspots or age spots, that takes a considerable time to fade even with proper care. Sunspots can appear in areas like the face, arms, back, shoulders, and back of the hands. So, it’s better to take precautions by wearing good sunscreen to prevent sunburn.
Prevents premature ageing of the skin- Regular usage of sunscreen effectively protects and prevents our skin from photoaging, resulting from repeated exposure to harmful UV rays of the sun. Photoaging includes signs like wrinkles, pigmented, dry, rough and uneven skin, and loss of elasticity.
Helps to retain even skin tone- Skin discolouration results from sun exposure without using sunscreen. Unprotected sun exposure can lead to dark patches on the skin. Therefore, one should step outside only after using sunscreen to prevent hyperpigmentation to retain an even skin tone.
All those confused if they should apply sunscreen all year round, the answer is yes, always. Whenever people are stepping outside, they should protect their skin by using the right kind of sunscreen to retain and enjoy the skin’s natural youthful appearance.