Believe it or not, sun protection is a year round thing. We promise that the sun doesn’t only shine Memorial-Labor Day and boy are those rays real assholes. They penetrate through clouds, through your car windows and possibly past the visor on the hat you’re wearing more for style than sun protection anyway.
So here’s the deal: SPF is confusing. Apparently the SPF companies were bored with selling regular easy-to-understand sunscreen so they created a million new choices just to fuck with you at Target. First, Mineral or Physical?
Are you a person who pretends to be sensitive to everything that touches your face? Do you prefer “natural” everything? Are you okay with the possibility of a chalky film being left on your face? If you answered yes to any of these, pick mineral. Seriously, we’re sure that there are legit reasons why people prefer a mineral SPF but if you don’t have an allergy, it’s just easy to pick a non-sticky formula that doesn’t leave a white cast on your face and body.
15, 35, 50?! WTF does that even mean?
The easiest way to explain this is, the lower the number, the higher percentage of sun rays penetrating your skin. If you want to get a bit of a tan, go with a lower number SPF. Your skin will still be protected but you’ll able to enjoy the tanning. Higher number=less rays and less of a tan. Get it?
UVA and UVB
UVA rays cut cha deep…in terms of aging your skin. They are the nasty rays that penetrate into the dermis layer of your skin and take make you look older than you most likely are. These rays take about 20 years to show their damage so if you didn’t listen to your mom in middle school, ha! Too late!
UVB rays are the ones that cause the sunburn as they penetrate the surface and epidermis layer of your skin. Word on the street is that these guys are also responsible for skin cancer.
If your moisturizer contains an SPF 30, adding another product with SPF 15 doesn’t equal SPF 45. Sunscreen effectiveness cannot be layered. You will receive the coverage of the highest SPF but only for about two hours. Most people put a sunscreen on in the morning and neglect to reapply during the day. An SPF spray is an easy way to reapply over your makeup or after lunch.
There are a ton of options out there but the most important thing to do is to use an SPF DAILY. Visible sunshine or not.