We all know sunscreen is an all-year-round non-negotiable essential. You probably believe that a high SPF is the best solution when the sun is glaring down and you need to protect your skin. But the reality is. SPF, a.k.a sun protection factor, gauges how effectively sunscreen shields your skin from the sun’s damaging UV rays. Today shelves are stocked to the gills with items ranging in price from 6 at the low end to 100+ at the very high end. But just because a bottle has a higher number on it doesn’t mean it is better for you.

What Do SPF Numbers Mean?

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The right SPF level depends on a person’s skincare requirements. Although, having a higher SPF does not always imply more protection. Depending on the person’s skin type and lifestyle, not everyone benefits from a high SPF. Even SPF 30 will do for many people. When you are outside in the sun, UVA and UVB rays hit your skin. Sunburns are caused by UVB radiation. On the other hand, UVA radiation penetrates the skin more deeply and speeds up the ageing process. Both types of radiation exposure raise the possibility of developing skin cancer. A fact to remember, SPF 30 blocks 97% of UVB radiation, SPF 50 blocks 98%, and SPF 100 blocks 99% of UVB radiation.

Do Products With Higher SPF Cause Side Effects?

Using a higher SPF has no harmful effects, but it can make your sun protection routine insufficient and need adding more. Due to its photochemistry, a product with SPF 50 may offer better UVB protection at the expense of UVA protection. Both types of radiation are dangerous. Skin ageing, damage to collagen fibres, and skin cancer are all caused by UVA radiation since they penetrate the skin deeper than UVB rays. Also, there is a chance that a higher SPF number will give people a false sense of security.

How To Pick The Right Sunscreen?

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Look for the words ‘broad spectrum’ on the package when selecting sunscreen. It indicates that your sunscreen provides UVB and UVA protection. A sunscreen with a boot-star rating of 4 to 5 is considered to be a good UVA protector, just as there is an SPF for UVB protection. You can thus apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen, which offers UVB and UVA protection. One teaspoon of sunscreen should be applied to your face and neck. It must be applied 30 minutes before exposure to the sun. You’ve probably heard this a lot of times, but I’ll say it again: always wear sunscreen!