How Does Sunscreen Protect Your Skin - CARiNG Pharmacy

How Does Sunscreen Protect Your Skin

Have you ever wondered how sunscreen works for your skin? How do these products protect your skin from the harmful sunlight? 

Some of us might assume ‘Well, isn’t sunscreen a protection layer on our skin that BLOCKS harmful light?’.

The truth is that there are more than one type of sunscreens and they work differently.

Types of Sunscreens
There are two main types of sunscreens which are physical and chemical sunscreens.

Physical Sunscreens
Also known as mineral sunscreens, this type of sunscreen contains minerals such as zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. These minerals reflect UV rays from the skin as they stay on the skin.

Physical sunscreens are proven to be effective, gentle to the skin and gentle for
children’s use.
However, many are looking for an alternative to physical
sunscreens.
Why? That is because of the chalky, difficult to spread and tend to leave a noticeable white cast on the skin.

Chemical Sunscreens
Chemical sunscreens do not block sunlight, these sunscreens contain chemicals that absorb UV rays. These sunscreens contain chemicals such as oxybenzone, avobenzone and octisalate.
Chemical sunscreens are much easier to spread.
The downside?
Chemical sunscreens are not friendly for sensitive skins. They have a higher risk of causing allergic reactions.

Tips on Sunscreen Application
Here are a few tips to make sure you are using your sunscreen right. If you are applying sunscreen without understanding how to use it, you might not be well protected against the sun.

  1. Apply sunscreen at least 15 minutes before going outdoor
  2. Choose a sunscreen that is SPF30 or higher
  3. Choose a broad spectrum sunscreen
  4. Reapply sunscreen every 2 hourly, or immediately after swimming or sweating

Hopefully these tips will help you understand better about sunscreens. Remember, your sunscreen works best if you know how to use it. Still unsure of how to choose a good sunscreen? Ask your CARiNG Pharmacist today!

References:

  1. How to apply sunscreen [Internet]. [cited 2023 Dec 1]. Available from: https://www.aad.org/public/everyday-care/sun-protection/shade-clothing-sunscreen/how-to-apply-sunscreen#:~:text=Apply%20sunscreen%20before%20going%20outdoors,is%20unprotected%20and%20can%20burn.
  2. Timmons J. Should you use physical or chemical sunscreen? [Internet]. Healthline Media; 2022 [cited 2023 Dec 1]. Available from: https://www.healthline.com/health/physical-vs-chemical-sunscreen#chemical-sunscreen