Dermatologists, beauty influencers and even your favourite celebrities agree that sunscreen is an absolute essential in a beauty routine. Irrespective of whether you spend time indoors or outdoors, you must apply sunscreen every single day — yes, even in the winters. A good SPF is essential for maintaining skin health on a day-to-day basis and in the long run.
Having said that, there are also a lot of questions regarding sunscreen queries that often remain unanswered. Ahead, we’ve answered the five most common ones for you.
- 01. The proper timeline
- 02. The right formula
- 03. The right SPF
- 04. The right amount
- 05. The right areas
01. The proper timeline
The golden rule of sunscreen application is to apply it 30 minutes before stepping out in the sun. This gives the product enough time to sink into your skin. Sunscreen should be the last step in your skincare routine — right after applying moisturiser and just before putting on makeup. But it doesn’t end there. You need to re-apply your sunscreen too. Why? The active ingredients in the sunscreen will break down after a couple of hours, leaving your skin exposed to sun damage. Re-applying your sunscreen every 2-3 hours will ensure maximum protection from the harmful sun rays.
02. The right formula
Much like other skincare staples, your sunscreen should suit your skin type as well. While creamy formulations are suitable for dry skin, those with an oily skin type should opt for gel-based or lotion consistencies. This is especially true for those with sensitive skin, as using the wrong sunscreen can irritate the skin and cause itchiness. Picking a formula that is tailor-made to suit sensitive skin types will ensure you’re not skipping sunscreen out of fear of agitating your skin.
03. The right SPF
The Sun Protection Factor is a crucial detail you need to get right while applying SPF. If you’re spending your day indoors, without direct exposure to sunlight, an SPF of 15 or higher will suffice. But if you’re going to be spending most of your day out in direct sunlight, an SPF of 30 or higher is recommended.
04. The right amount
The go-to measurement that most dermats recommend is the length of your index finger. Starting from the top of your finger line the product on your finger till the base to gauge the right amount of sunscreen you’ll require. Make sure to use a broad-spectrum formula, which provides protection from both UVA (tanning and premature ageing) and UVB (sunburn) sun rays.
05. The right areas
It is not just your face that needs sunscreen! Areas like the top of your ears, back of the neck and even the hairline need the product. A good practice is to cover your whole body with sunscreen before stepping out. If you think that your layers are enough to provide sun protection, just apply some to exposed areas like your arms, ankles, and even the top of your foot.