How to #STAYSHADY the right way?
Always wear sunscreen approved by the FDA and with an SPF above 30. Sunscreen should be applied 20 minutes before sun exposure and should be reapplied every 1-2 hours. Remember to reapply more often if there is water contact, perspiration, or if you rub it off. You should cover your whole body with sunscreen, lips, ears, feet, hands and even those bald spots on the back of the neck are often forgotten! Don’t forget to check the expiration date of your sunscreen either- It might play a big role in its effectiveness.
SPF: WHAT DOES IT MEAN.
SPF or Sun Protection Factor is a measure of the sunscreen’s ability to prevent UVB rays from damaging our skin. Here is a simple description of how it works: if you know how long it regularly takes your skin type to burn under the sun you would multiply that time by the SPF of the sunscreen. For example, if your skin typically starts burning in 20 minutes and you use a sunscreen with 10 SPF, it will prevent you from burning 10 times longer - that is, it will prevent you from burning for about 200 minutes. Beware that SPF only measures a sunscreen ability to protect against UVB (Not UVA!). In order to get a sunscreen that protects from both types of rays, UVA and UVB, look for a product that says “Broad Spectrum” which means they will provide proportional protection against both rays.
WHICH SUNSCREEN TO USE.
Remember that SPF is a measure of protection against UVB; however, the term Broad Spectrum is used if a sunscreen provides UVA protection as well. Always check that the sunscreen has been approved by the FDA and it has the words Broad Spectrum written on the bottle. The skin cancer foundation recommends a minimum SPF of 30 for optimal protection. The table below has some of the ingredients approved by the FDA and list the ray protection they offer. Compare your sunscreen to the table below to see what type of protection it provides.
SUN PROTECTIVE CLOTHING.
Clothing is considered the most effective way to protect your skin from the sun. Unlike sunscreen, you don't need to worry about reapplying or adverse skin reactions. Contrary to what you may think, most clothing out there does not provide enough protection from UV rays. The Skin Cancer foundation has estimated that an average shirt, for example, provides a protection of 7 UPF- which is way below the recommended level of 30 UPF or above. There are many brands that have a certified UPF value of 30 or higher. When looking for sun protective clothing, make sure it comes from a certified provider and that it has a UPF factor of 30 or higher!
OTHER COOL SUN PROTECTIVE MEASURES.
Wear sunglasses to protect your eves from UV rays. Make sure they offer UV protection - not all of them do!
WHY SHOULD YOU #STAYSHADY.
Wow, that was a lot of information! But, hopefully you learned a thing or two.
KILL THE MYTH.
Wanna feel like a superhero? Memorize the facts below and help us kill some myths!
- A base tan doesn't exist. Next time you hear someone say "a base tan is a healthy tan" - tell them something they don't know.
- Don’t tell your friends they look good when they're tan. Although they probably do, trust me, that tan will not look good in the long run when it turns into wrinkles or even worse, some form of skin cancer. If they don't believe you, tell them the story of my tip-less nose.
- You can only get Vitamin D from the Sun - Please.. this is the 21st century! we have other more effective and safer ways of getting our dose of Vitamin D. Most diets have adequate levels of vitamin D and if not, well, there are many multivitamins in the market that will help you get there.
- Any skin color at any age can develop skin cancer. It’s not just fairer and older people. Start protecting now!
- If you ever hear one of your friends goes indoor tanning - tell them it's time to have "the talk". Explain how much damage they are doing to their skin and convince them not to! It will be eye opening to hear it coming from their friend and not their mom or dad. Indoor tanning is a skin cancer's cancer - we're fighting hard to make it go away for good!