It’s essential to wear sunscreen on your face every day, but how often should you apply it?
You’ve probably heard that you need to use sunscreen every time you go outside, no matter the weather. And if you’re like many other people, you sometimes forget. The results of sun damage — like wrinkles and age spots — aren’t evident until years later, so it’s easy to think that applying sunscreen now and then is enough.
But what you might not realize is that sunscreen needs to be reapplied after a certain amount of time in the sun. Find out how sunscreens like La Roche Posay sunscreen can help and how often you apply them.
How to Buy the Right Sunscreen First?
To begin with, it is crucial to make sure the sunscreen you use offers both UVA and UVB protection. UVB rays can burn your skin and can lead to sunburns, while UVA rays penetrate the dermis of the skin and cause premature aging (wrinkles and fine lines), as well as cancer.
Not all sunscreens protect both your skin against UVA and UVB rays – instead, many only protect either one or the other. Make sure to carefully check sunscreen labels to see if they have an SPF, Broad Spectrum, Waterproof, etc.
Sunscreens have expiration dates, so always check the date before you buy it and try not to buy one if the expiration date is in less than a year from when you plan on using it. You can prolong your sunscreen’s life by storing it in a cool, dark place.
How to Apply Sunscreen on Your Face?
Most people don’t put nearly enough sunscreen on their faces. You should apply one ounce (two tablespoons) of sunscreen to your entire face every time you go outside—twice the amount you think you need.
How Often Should You Reapply Sunscreen?
Unfortunately, no matter how much sunscreen you use or the SPF it has, all sunscreens wear off (with the exception of some that claim to be ‘all-day protection’). That’s because your skin absorbs some of it, and every time you wash your face, sunscreen also washes off.
The FDA states that you need to reapply sunscreen every two hours, but in reality, you should reapply it after sweating or getting wet and even more often if you’re at the beach. You also need to reapply sunscreen immediately after towel drying off since water reflects UV rays and makes them even stronger.
Here are a few tips to follow:
- Use Sunscreen Every Day
Sun protection isn’t just crucial for outdoor activities or sunny days—even if you are sitting by the window in your office, you’re still getting UV exposure. To ensure you’re protected, look for a sunscreen with mineral ingredients like zinc oxide, titanium dioxide, or iron oxide. These are physical blockers that sit on top of your skin and reflect the sun’s rays—a safer bet than chemical-based formulas that absorb UV light.
- Sunscreen Needs to Be Applied Evenly for Proper Protection
When applying La Roche Posay sunscreen or any other sunblock, make sure the product is evenly distributed over your face so you are getting an even level of coverage. People often miss areas like their necks or the backs of their ears, so it’s best to apply sunscreen before getting dressed if you wear a sundress or tank top.
Also, make sure you aren’t skimping on your sunscreen just because it costs more—a pricier brand doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re getting better protection!
- Can You Wear Makeup with Sunscreen?
If you’re worried that wearing sunscreen will leave your face feeling oily or sweaty, opt for a water-resistant sunscreen. The moisture should give your face a dewy glow instead of an oil slick when applied correctly. It’s also possible to buy makeup with SPF, so you can protect yourself without compromising your beauty routine.
- The Best Time to Apply Sunscreen
The optimal time to apply your sunscreen is to wash your face and apply moisturizer. It will help the sunscreen stay on your skin longer since moisturizer creates a barrier between it and your skin.
Remember that different sunscreens have different instructions regarding a reapplication, so don’t assume that if one type needs to be reapplied every two hours, all sunscreens do. Look for the water-resistant label like La Roche Posay sunscreen if you plan to spend time in the pool or ocean—this means it will take 40 minutes for your sunscreen to start breaking down.
Consult with your dermatologist if you’re still confused about how often you should be wearing sunscreen. They can help you create a sunscreen routine that protects your skin and keeps you healthy in the sun.