Major Factors to Consider Before buying Sunscreen, the Dos and Don’ts

By Virginia Mwangi / March 16, 2019




The January sun has refused to reduce its scorch despite being in March and the weatherman has no idea how long the situation will remain as it is and hence continues to advise citizens to protect themselves from the scorch.

The sun can do a whole lot of damage to your skin if it’s too hot and a need to take care is inevitable. There are various ways to avoid getting negative sun reaction to your body and that include wearing a hat, sunglasses while outside to protect your eyes from the bright rays and a good sunscreen.

How do you choose a good sunscreen in a market flooded with goods with misleading labels only meant for marketing?

The Sun Protection Factor (SPF)

If you are dark skin, it is recommended that one uses a sunscreen with at least 15 SPF; this is indicated on the container.

If one is light skin, then it is recommended that the SPF is not below 30 since the skin filters at least 97 percent of the UVB rays.

Creams or Sprays

Creams are more effective as they have a lesser alcohol content, unlike sprays. A good sunscreen will indicate whether the product is ‘photo-stable’.

If you are not able to get the cream, then get the spray which is better than nothing.

UVA/UVB Protection

The Ultraviolet B-rays (UVB) from the sunburn the superficial layers of the skin and leads to the development of skin cancer.

The Ultraviolet A-rays (UVA) rays penetrate deeply into the dermis and damage it. The dermis is the skin’s thickest layer. Unprotected exposure to the UVA rays can lead to premature skin aging and wrinkling and suppression of the immune system.

A great sunscreen should clearly indicate that it has the content ability to protect your skin from both the UVA and UVB rays. This is indicated by terms like ‘broad spectrum’ or ‘high UVA protection’.

Sunscreen Do’s and Don’ts

Do’s

Ensure your sunscreen is not expired as it will not be of any help if it is.

Apply sunscreen in the morning before leaving the house whether the weather is hot or not.

Apply a generous amount around your eyes and on your nose as the skin there is thinner and more sensitive.

Carry your sunscreen and reapply every two hours if continually exposed to the sun.

Reapply your sunscreen if your skin comes into contact with water as there’s NO waterproof sunscreen.

If the skin is tanned, dark because of harsh sun rays, use products with vitamin C or antioxidants to help repair your skin.

If you are allergic to sunscreen or react to it, try natural products such as coconut oil.

Don’ts

Don’t over-expose your skin to the sun between 10 am to 4 pm as the sun is most intense.

Don’t sleep with sunscreen as your skin pores need to breathe, apply a light night cream.





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