“You just want to take a bottle and go, but there are so many things to think about,” Debra Jailman, MD, board certified dermatologist in New York City. Here’s where to start.
How to read a sunscreen bottle, line by line
Sunscreen protects us from two types of ultraviolet radiation: ultravioletA (UVA) and ultavioletB (UVB). “UVA rays are penetrating rays,” says Dr. Jailman. “There are rays that cause changes in pigment, but also rays that cause skin cancer and cause premature aging.”
“For several decades, UVB rays have been widely recognized as the source of solar damage,” said Ranella Hirsch, MD, a board certified dermatologist in Cambridge, Massachusetts. “This also causes UVA touches that mainly cause redness and burns.”
“Since the dermatology science and community have begun to better understand the importance of UVA radiation damage to the sun, sunscreens have been developed to include UVA protection, and the broad-spectrum limit is what the manufacturers have indicated,” Dr. Hirschman says. And although we haven’t yet introduced the standard of approval of that protection, in 2011, the Food and Drug Administration, a governing body in the United States that has supervised sunscreen regulations, has introduced some standards that have been adequately adapted to UVA protection. a label meets a broad spectrum. “
So if you have a broad spectrum sunscreen that doesn’t say it, it only gets UVB protection. You will be protected from burns, but the damage is not lasting as long as it can cause skin cancer and accelerate the signs of aging.
This title is well known to us all. “SPF stands for Solar Protection Factor”, Lindsey Zubritsky, MD, board certified dermatologist in Pennsylvania. “It is a measure of how well a sunscreen protects our skin from exposure to the UVB rays of burning, as well as measures the amount of skin safe to burn compared to naked skin.”
Dermatologists recommend that you use a solar screen with a minimum of SPF 30. “SPF 30 sunscreen offers protection from 97 percent pf UVB light, SPF 50 sunscreen provides 98 percent protection, and SPF 100 percent protects 99 percent”, The jailman says. “It doesn’t matter much when you go from 50 to 100. It’s not as fast as you might think.”
For many, wearing more than SPF over 30 is not really necessary. With some exceptions? “Let’s say you’re someone who is red and you have very pale skin or you take a drug that makes you sensitive to the sun, like doxycycline for Lyme disease, maybe you’d go for SPF 50,” says the Dr. Jailman. “It also depends on where you live and what you’re doing. If you live near the equator, or if you’re teaching tennis and you have so much sun exposure in the midday sun, then you’d like to choose. You’d have higher SPF because you only have exposure to the sun.”
Higher SPF also helps if you’re not big enough to apply sunscreen, which is effective for a two inch face and body glass shot. In other words, if you don’t wear enough sunscreen, you’re actually not getting SPF on the label. So if you apply half of the required sunscreen by using SPF 100, you’re taking half the protection.
The PA system stands for UVA Grade Protection. It is similar to SPF but not UVA rays. It was developed in Japan in 1996, and has been adopted by other countries. PPD relies on persistent pigmentation. “PPD measures multiple levels of UVA that a person can be exposed to without experiencing skin darkening,” says Dr. Hirsh.
“This is a good thing, because otherwise you really don’t know how much UVA protection you have,” Dr. The jailman says. The more, according to PA standards, the more UVA protection the sunscreen provides. “PA+ offers some UVA protection. PA++ offers moderate UVA protection. PA++ provides high level UVA protection. And PA+++ provides extremely high UVA protection.”
Other common chemical blockers include avobenzonam, homosalatum, octo and oxybenzonam. “Sunscreens absorb chemically into your skin, and then it absorbs ultraviolet rays and converts those rays to heating and inactivate them”, Dr. The jailman says. Chemical sunscreens are a bit controversial. FDA research by 2020 shows that when a direct amount of chemical sunscreen is applied to the skin, it can be absorbed by the blood stream. It can remain in the body for an extended period of time. Management does more research to determine if sunscreen chemicals can have any impact on health. As of now, chemical blockers are still FDA approved and are also recommended by the Academy of Dermatologists (AAD). “Sunscreen has made the drugs poisonous or dangerous to human health without being tested,” reads AAD’s website.
Although Dr. Jailman prefers chemical and mineral sunscreens, and says chemical sunscreens are very good to provide sun protection. “Chemicals, I mean, work really well,” he said. “If you have avobenzonam, each of these protects your skin. There is no doubt. They use them because they protect your skin very well.” And while researchers are exploring the safety of chemical sunscreens, there’s one thing we know for sure: sun damage can lead to skin cancer, and chemical sunscreens are important to protect against it.
“Chemical sunscreens are also typically easier to rub in and have less chance of leaving a white cast compared to mineral sunscreens,” adds Dr. Zubritsky.
Sunscreens use two mineral body blockers: titanium dioxide and zinc oxide. While there are 16 FDA-approved sunscreens (both mineral and chemical sunscreens), these two are soil mineral blockers that have been thoroughly tested for grass-state (commonly known to be safe and effective). Dr. Zubritsky notes that “those with sensitive skin can develop chemical protein allergy to sunscreens, so these minerals are the best for those skin types”.
It is commonly accepted that sunscreens deposits minerals apart from the chemical, so they look for absorbing sunlight. However, a 2015 study showed that blockers still work by absorbing UV rays. “Both” [chemical and mineral sunscreens] the function is largely UV absorbing and converting heat, although with the mineral, a small amount (about 5 to 10 per cent) is reflected,” says Dr. Hirsch.
While physical sunscreens generally absorb UV rays, Shirley Chi, MD, a board-certified dermatologist in Southern California, notes that they reflect a good amount of visible light. Visible light is quite literally the light that you can see. (UV rays are invisible to the human eye.) “Modern-day medicines contain nanoparticle-sized minerals that emit up to 50 per cent visible light, which we now know is important to prevent pigment conditions such as melasma,” says Dr. Chi. “That’s why I still love mineral sunscreens so much, even with more and more chemical sunscreen options.”
Minerals have historically left chalky white or purple on the skin, especially on the skin color. However, “these are just charms that blend right into the skin and look cosmetically elegant,” says Dr. Jailman.
If you’re staying on the water for a while, water-resistant sunscreen. Just know that you need to check up the label to see how often you need to reopen if you are in the water. “Some sunscreens are water resistant for 40 minutes,” says Dr. Jailman, “and some water-resistant sunscreens for 80 minutes.”
How to apply sunscreen, the right way:
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