Sunscreen 101:

Why it Should Be Your Best Friend This Summer


Did you know more than 2 people die of skin cancer in the U.S. every hour?

On average, 1 in 5 Americans will develop skin cancer by the time they’re 70. Receiving 5 or more intense sunburns in your life can increase the risk of developing melanoma by double!   The daily use of an SPF 15 or higher sunscreen reduces the risk of developing melanoma by 50 percent. Although, most dermatologists recommended a minimum of SPF 30 especially when spending time outdoors. Sunscreen does not only help fight off the risk of skin cancer, but it also fights the signs of aging allowing you to look younger for longer! While the sun is good for you due to Vitamin D, it isn't always good for your skin. So while a tan will give you a “healthy glow” in the moment, it provides negative effects over the long term. 

Sunburns and long exposure to UVA and UVB rays will cause a breakdown of collagen in the skin, creating deep wrinkles, permanently enlarging pores, and exacerbating acne.

While a tan can temporarily hide a red, broken-out complexion, the increased shedding of cells as your tan fades can cause more breakouts. UVA rays penetrate the skin deeper than UVB rays and are primarily responsible for premature skin aging and wrinkling. UVA rays have also been shown to cause additional skin damage on a cellular level. These rays are out from sunrise to sunset, whether you can see the sun through the clouds or not. They also penetrate windows - if you spend a lot of time in the car or in a corner office you may begin to notice a difference on the side of your body facing the rays. UVB rays damage the outer layers of the skin. These are the burning rays, the main cause of sunburns and are strongly linked to the development of skin cancer. Always purchase a broad spectrum sunscreen to best protect your skin. 

Don’t let cloudy & rainy days fool you - 90% of UV rays still penetrate the grey bleakness.

UV rays even reflect off snow and water, increasing the amount of exposure to our skin.  No one is immune to being on the wrong side of the sun’s intentions, not even in winter! Sunscreen should always be applied 30 minutes before being exposed to the sun and reapplied every 2 hours. If you are swimming or sweating, it should be applied more frequently. Good news: sunscreen can also be worn under makeup! Just apply it after moisturizing the skin and allow it to sink in before applying your foundation or BB creams. Medical grade sunscreen is fantastic and is clinically proven to protect your skin for up to 90 minutes from both UVA & UVB rays. It is light enough to be worn under makeup without pilling, and any sort of fragrance dissipates quickly.

Now go out and enjoy this gorgeous summer, but don't forget that the secret to staying youthful is to protect your skin now and not play catch-up in the future!

-Written by Alexandria Southern LME

Learn more about Alexandria, our Master Esthetician here


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