Does SPF 50 pa+++ mean danger?
Everybody’s Free To Wear Sunscreen
– Baz Luhrmann
Baz speaks lengthily on advice and decisions in life but he begins and ends with a crucial bit of advice. Always. Use. Sunscreen. But does SPF 50 pa+++ mean danger?
Sunscreen helps protect your skin from UV rays that bombard your skin every second you’re out in daylight. Malaysians have a rough time with this as we grew up with sunny days and not a care if it’s bright. The heat gets to us sometimes but it isn’t a cause for concern.
That is why we see many malaysians looking wise and aged way before their time.
Outdoor activities can be a lot of fun, sometimes it’s a necessity. However, regardless of how intense the sun may be, UV rays are a cause for concern as they can cause quite a few diseases that are dangerous.
That is why it’s so important to have that extra layer of protection sunscreen affords you.
But does SPF 50 pa+++ mean danger?
Sunscreens come in an array of SPF content that help protect us from UV rays
Many feel like SPF 25 or 30 are not enough for their daily needs and opt for SPF 50 to 100. A common assumption is that the higher the SPF, the better the sunscreen protects from UV rays.
However, that is not the case.
More sunburn cases are reported with people who used higher SPF content sunscreen compared to the lower SPF sunscreens.
Here are a few tips for skincare in the sun.
Higher SPF Sunscreen does not award more protection towards the sun
From a glance, you would think SPF 100 sunscreens would protect your skin twice as well as SPF 50 or even almost thrice as much as SPF 30.
SPF 50 application
The facts display a different outcome though, as the difference is far less that originally thought.
Based of the data provided by the American Cancer Society (ACS),
“An SPF 15 sunscreen screens 93 percent of the sun’s UVB rays; SPF 30 protects against 97 percent; and SPF 50, 98 percent. The Skin Cancer Foundation maintains that SPFs of 15 or higher are necessary for adequate everyday protection. For more extended or intense sun exposure, the Foundation recommends SPFs of 30 or higher.”
Note that a higher SPF count lends protection based on time rather than amount. A person using SPF 15 will take 15 times longer to redden than someone who is not using sunscreen. Reapplication is needed every 20 minutes and so a lot of users who apply SPF 50 and above have a false sense of safety which leads to riskier behaviour in direct sunlight. Which brings us to our next point.
Does SPF 50 pa+++ mean danger?
No, but High SPF content products provide a false sense of protection
Dr Stephen Q Wang, mentions that high content SPF items give it’s users a false sense of safety.
As a result, it’s user is more susceptible to the damages of UV rays due to its user exposing themself to more UV rays.
The American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) suggests a reapplication of sunscreen every two hours and after sunbathing or swimming without regard of the SPF count.
You should also remember to apply sunscreen before going out of the house or if you plan to spend a lot of time near windows or under natural sunlight.
SPF 30 provides the right amount of protection
For outdoor needs, a product that has SPF 30 is enough to provide you protection. Please remember that sunscreen only provides protection to UVB rays, while deep penetrating UVA rays are still a cause for concern. UVA rays cause long term deep tissue damage and alternative protection is needed.
You can check to see if the sunscreen you apply on you skin protects from UVB and UVA rays. Besides that, that are other ways you can sun proof yourself!
Sunscreen alone is not enough for the job.
But having the right sunscreen is a great way to start.
Click Here to go to our article on Mary Jardin’s best products for skin protection.
Have a good day. And as always, remember to use sunscreen.