What is SPF?
SPF stands for sun protection factor and measures protection that a product offers from the sun’s rays. A sunscreen rich in SPF shields skin thanks to specific molecules and pigments that absorb or reflect UV rays to prevent skin damage. For complete protection against UVA and UVB rays, a broad spectrum sunscreen is the answer. The SPF factor signifies the amount of time it can keep your skin protected. For example, SPF 15 prevents sunburn for 15 times longer than usual*. As very high SPF factors haven’t shown a significant difference, sunscreens with an SPF factor between 15 and 50 offer adequate skin protection.
How do sunrays affect the skin?
The Sun emits UVA and UVB rays. Prolonged exposure to either of them is harmful for the body. UVA rays penetrate into the deeper, dermis layer of the skin. UVB rays may not penetrate as deeply as these but unfortunately, can cause a great amount of damage to the DNA of your skin cells. Short term exposure to UV rays causes skin darkening and sunburn. Over the long term, such exposure can result in premature ageing and increase one’s risk of skin cancer.
How do you protect your skin from the sun with SPF?
Besides owning a product with SPF, you also need to account for the amount of time you’re exposing your skin to the sun and keep your skin type in mind. Only then will you be able to give your skin the right protection. We recommend the Lakmé Sun Expert Fairness + UV Lotion SPF 50 PA+++ to do the job. The broad spectrum formula of this sunscreen uses SPF 50 and PA+++ to shield your skin from both, UVA and UVB rays and prevents skin darkening and damage. If you’re swimming or indulging in any outdoor activity while exposing your skin to the sun for a prolonged stretch, it’s crucial to reapply sunscreen every 3 hours as it can get rubbed or washed off.
*Source: American Academy of Dermatology
Image Credits: Washington Post