Would You Like Some Sunscreen With That?


It’s getting to be that time of year again!  The sun is out, the temperature is rising, and what better way to spend this lovely summer day than at the beach!  After spending your whole day preparing for this relaxing experience; the last thing you want to have happen is to leave the beach looking redder than a lobster.  This is why I always make sure to bring a bottle of sunscreen with me every time I go to the beach.  However, just bringing a regular tube of sunscreen won’t always protect your skin from the sun’s ultraviolet rays.  Several different factors go into picking the right type of sunscreen that can help protect your skin from that warm summer day at the beach.

You can measure how helpful a sunscreen will be at protecting your skin by its Sun Protection Factor (SPF) level.  A higher SPF sunscreen allows for you to stay out in the sun longer with less skin damage.  The SPF level determines how much protection your skin will have from the sun’s UVB radiation.  It is recommended by dermatologists to wear a sunscreen with an SPF level of at least 15 or greater.  If you plan on spending all day at the beach, then using a higher SPF sunscreen may help protect your skin longer.

So at this point you may be thinking that by wearing a high SPF sunscreen that you will be completely protected from the sun.  You are far from correct.  It is very important to use sunscreen that is marketed as either waterproof or water-resistant.  Normal sunscreen would wash right off as soon as you entered the ocean.  Water-resistant sunscreen must maintain its advertised SPF level after exposure to water for 40 minutes.  Waterproof sunscreen must maintain its SPF level for at least 80 minutes after water exposure.  Having waterproof or water resistant sunscreen is necessary if you plan on going into the ocean while at the beach.

You’re almost ready to find the best sunscreen to use during the hot summer months at the beach.  Most sunscreens protects your skin from UVB radiation, which is connected to sunburn.  However, most sunscreens do not protect your skin from UVA radiation.  UVA radiation travels deeper into your skin than UVB radiation.  Long exposure to UVA radiation has been connected to premature aging and wrinkling of the skin, and may be connected to some types of skin cancer.  Purchasing a sunscreen that protects from both UVB and UVA radiation can protect your skin from any long term damage.

Did you ever think it could be so hard to buy sunscreen to go to the beach?  It won’t be as long as you remember to purchase sunscreen with a higher SPF level for greater sun protection.  You must also make sure that your sunscreen is waterproof or water-resistant, and can protect against UVA radiation.  Now that your a sunscreen professional, you’re all set!  Now you won’t have to worry about getting a nasty sunburn next time you go to the beach!


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