6 Things You Need To Know Before Buying Another Bottle Of Sunscreen

It’s summer all year long here in Malaysia, but it seems like our country is getting a lot hotter and sunnier than it was five years ago.

We can’t be the only who noticed this, right? 

Back then, we weren’t taught to use sunscreen on a daily basis, except for when we’re hitting the beach. However,  with the media stressing on the importance of using sunscreen whenever we go out, many millennial women have become more inclined to spend money on them.

1. Is it worth your investment?

Sunscreens are essential, as it could help to protect your skin from harmful UV rays, prevents premature ageing and lowers skin cancer risks. However, are you actually using the right type for your skin? Here’s what you should know before investing in a good sunscreen:

2. Know your skin type

You should always choose a sunscreen based on your skin type. If you have dry skin, then it’s best for you to use oil-based ones as it will keep your skin hydrated. Meanwhile, for those who have oily or acne-prone skin, then water or gel-based sunscreen may be more suitable for you, as creams are oil-based might cause breakouts.

3. UVA or UVB – Which is more important?

Ultraviolet rays (UVA and UVB) are what you should protect your skin from, as they are linked to skin cancer.

UVB rays are the cause for skin reddening, sunburn, skin cancer, tanning and premature ageing which differ in strength depending on the location, time of day and time of year. Meanwhile, UVA is consistent all year round and at any time of the day.  

Therefore, since we live in a tropical climate, it is better if you could opt for a sunscreen with ‘broad spectrum’ protection which shields against both UVA and UVB rays. Products that aren’t broad spectrum only shield your skin against sunburn, and not skin cancer or skin ageing.

4. Higher SPF does not always mean better

Skin Pigmentation And Dark Spots 6

According to the American Academy of Dermatology, the minimum recommendation of Sun Protection Factor (SPF) for everyday wear is SPF 15 or 30, and SPF 50 for any outdoor activities. Be sure to reapply your sunscreen every 90 to 120 minutes or as labelled on the product, and avoid from using anything more than 60 as higher SPF does not measure how long a sunscreen will protect your skin from those rays.

5. You don’t have to spend big on getting a good sunscreen

The key is to use trusted brands as opposed to price points. As long as it has all the essential requirements needed for sun protection, there’s no need for you to spend a huge amount of money on it. It also depends on how often you apply sunscreen to your body.

6. Most importantly, check the expiration date

Most sunscreens last for up to a year or two but if exposed to high temperatures or direct sunlight, it might last you less than a year. The heat and humidity can cause the formula to separate, making it ineffective in protecting you against sunburns. Better be safe and get yourself a brand new sunscreen for you to have fun under the sun worry-free!