Everyone you ask will most likely tell you something different about sunscreen. But are you really sure about the differences in SPF numbers? Do you need a broad spectrum sunscreen?
Don’t worry if you’re not sure. Most people don’t know what the differences are. And most people will usually grab the bottle with the highest SPF number on it. So here is your sunscreen cheat-sheet for the summer:
-Don’t rely solely on the SPF value.
-Ultraviolet A (UVA) rays are always attacking your skin. Sunny days, cloudy days and thru windows.
-Ultraviolet A (UVA) rays are what causes your skin to age prematurely.
-Ultraviolet A (UVA) rays are also what causes your skin to tan.
-Ultraviolet B (UVB) rays are what causes your skin to burn. Stay exposed to these rays for too long and your skin will turn painfully red.
-The SPF value on the bottle indicates protection against ultraviolet B (UVB) rays. NOT UVA RAYS.
-The FDA suggests SPF values of at least 15 but not greater than 50. Anything above 50 will not protect any better.
-Both ultraviolet A (UVA) and ultraviolet B (UVB) rays will contribute to the development of skin cancers for some people.
The FDA continues to work with manufacturers to develop easier to understand labels. But until all sunscreen bottles make it perfectly clear, remember this tip:
Look for sunscreens that offer broad spectrum protection against UVA and UVB rays with an SPF between 15 and 50.
Now that you know, shop with confidence, spread the word and lets get to the beach!