Debunking 6 sunscreen myths that are causing you harm

Do you use sunscreen?

This question pops up every time skincare is discussed online and offline. Sunscreen  is the heavy lifter of the any beauty regiment, protecting you from harmful UV radiation sun rays. It is a vital part of any skincare routine, helping to  prevent skin cancer and protect against signs of premature aging, such as wrinkles, fine lines, and skin discoloration caused by sun damage. 

Apart from protecting you against skin cancer, wearing SPF regularly can help your skin achieve an even tone. The active ingredients target skin problems like discoloration, tan and dark spots. It also helps reduce or fade their appearance.

SPF which stands for sun protection factor has numerous benefits, but we are still surrounded by a number sunscreen of myths & misinformation. 

Myth 1: Black people don’t need protection from the sun.

Although people with darker skin have more melanin, which can filter UV radiation, they can still experience sun damage and skin cancer. This is partly because decades of damage to the ozone layer has increased the amount of harmful UV radiation that reaches the earth’s surface. While it may be harder to see the damage on darker skin, it’s still there. Black skin can have a natural SPF of up to 13, but this is not enough to prevent sunburn and other sun-induced damage.

Myth 2: Coconut oil can substitute as a good sunscreen.

While some sunscreens combine coconut oil with other ingredients to provide broad-spectrum UVA/UVB coverage, coconut oil alone is not an adequate substitute for proper protection. It may delay the time it takes to burn, but it does not provide sufficient UV protection.

Myth 3: Sunscreen is unsafe to apply regularly.

SPF is regulated by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to ensure it is safe and effective. They must pass certain tests before they are sold, so they are safe to use regularly.

Myth 4: Sunscreen is waterproof.

There is no such thing as waterproof sunscreen. Sweat and water can wash sunscreen from the skin, so the FDA no longer allows manufacturers to claim that sunscreen is waterproof. Some sunscreens are water-resistant for up to 40 or 80 minutes.

Myth 5: Sunscreen can be used for infants and children.

Sunscreen is not recommended for infants who are 6 months old or younger. The FDA recommends that infants be kept out of the sun during peak hours and use protective clothing if they must be outside. Infants are at greater risk than adults of sunscreen side effects, such as a rash. The best protection for infants is to keep them out of the sun entirely.

Myth 6: I don’t need UV protection if it’s cloudy or cold.

Even on cloudy or cold days, up to 80 percent of UV rays can penetrate light cloud cover and reach your skin, according to the World Health Organization. Therefore, it’s essential to apply sunscreen every day, regardless of the weather.

To get the most out of your sunscreen, choose one with an SPF of at least 15. The higher the SPF value, the more protection the sunscreen provides against sunburn. However, keep in mind that higher SPF values do not necessarily provide better protection against skin cancer. Remember to apply generously and reapply every two hours or after swimming or sweating.

To get the most value, choose one with an SPF of at least 15. The SPF value indicates the level of sunburn protection provided by the sunscreen product. Higher SPF values (up to 50) provide greater sunburn protection.


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