Sunscreen are likely to be a necessary part of your aesthetic skin transformation journey. You have seen so many sunscreens on the market, and you just assume that the higher the SPF, the better the sunscreen. You also most likely know that you need a broad spectrum sunscreen that covers both UVA and UVB radiation.
The good news is that you got 50% of the above correct. Yes, you need UVA and UVB coverage, but an SPF 100 sunscreen will not protect you from aging and cancer much better than an SPF 30 or 40. Let’s explain.
SPF measures a ratio of the amount of UVB radiation needed to cause redness and burning of the skin. It is only a guide, as the thickness of the sunscreen, sweating, and water resistance all affect how efficiently it works against UVB light.
This is the reason why waterproof sunscreens offer superior protection. Notice that SPF measures UVB, and not UVA. But the real deep skin, collagen, and DNA damage is caused by UVA light that invades deeper into the skin.
Lets look at SPF 30 versus SPF 100. The % blockage of UV light is what matters. SPF 30 blocks about 97% of UVB light, while SPF 50+ blocks 98%. No sunscreen can give you 100% protection.
High SPF sunscreens also contain high levels of chemical rather than mineral sunscreens, plus perfumes. While lower levels of chemical sunscreens are gentler on your skin, higher concentrations are more likely to cause phototoxic and photoallergenic skin reactions.
Have to ever experienced that sudden flush of heat on your skin when purchasing cheaper high SPF sunscreens?
This is caused by the absorption of UV light that gets converted to heat by sunscreen chemicals. The next stage may be stinging of the skin and an allergenic skin reaction.
The take home message is that a mineral sunscreen of 30 or 40 SPF may be a healthier option for your skin than an SPF 100 chemical sunscreen. Mineral sunscreens contain zinc oxide & titanium dioxide. But does this mean that chemical sunscreens are bad for your skin? The answer is no as long as the concentrations are low, and you are choosing the safer ingredients.
It is recommended to stay away from oxybenzone, widely found in chemical sunscreens. This ingredient is not present in Melanopeel® sunscreens.
Today, most sunscreens will provide broad spectrum of UVA and UVB protection. We recommend that you choose a good quality sunscreen that you will use consistently, and one that will protect your skin without irritation.