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safe skin + fun in the sun? recurrent’s sunscreen guide

It’s finally summertime, which means warm weather, cold drinks, and lots of time in the sun. recurrent’s sunscreen guide is here to help make sure you’re keeping your skin safe + having fun in the sun this summer!

It seems obvious when you would need to wear sunscreen: when you’re outside in the sun. But what about when you can’t see the sun? You still need sunscreen! Even when it’s cloudy, the UV rays can be damaging to your skin. A good rule of thumb is that the only time you don’t need sunscreen when you’re outside is when the stars are out. 

One of the biggest misconceptions people have about sunscreen is that they can put it on once at the beginning of the day and be set for several hours of being outside. This is not true and can lead to sunburn + long term damage. When spending the day outside it is important to remember to constantly reapply sunscreen about every 2 hours.

Now that you know when to wear sunscreen, you still have to figure out which sunscreen to use. Most people know sunscreens are categorized by SPF but rarely understand what SPF really means. SPF stands for sun protection factor and it is an analysis of how much of the sun’s harmful rays your sunscreen is blocking. 30 is the minimum SPF you should be using. If your skin is on the fairer side or you are very concerned about burning you should stay in the range of SPF 50-75. Some companies promise an SPF of 100+ but anything over 75 will give you around the same amount of protection. It is important when choosing a sunscreen to make sure it protects against both UVA + UVB rays. The sunscreen will say right on the bottle if it does.

Most sunscreens are oil-based but you can also choose a mineral-based sunblock. The mineral-based option is more effective in fully blocking the sun’s rays. However, it does not rub into your skin in the same way that the oil-based sunscreens do + often will remain on top of your skin leaving it white after application.  

There are also a lot of different application methods to choose from for sunscreen. While all of them help to protect your skin, some are more effective than others in ensuring full coverage. Lotions tend to get the most even coverage because you are manually spreading it on your skin. Face sticks are a little more difficult to apply evenly and may be splotchy in terms of coverage. Sprays are effective and easy to apply as long as you make sure that you are close enough that the sunscreen is getting on the skin + is rubbed in when necessary. 

There has been concern in the past about the safety of sunscreen, specifically aerosols. However, the spray sunscreens that you can buy now keep the aerosol separate from the sunscreen inside the can so there is no mixing of harmful chemicals. Almost all sunscreens that were once considered harmful to the environment have been removed from the market.

When it comes to choosing your sunscreen, recurrent has your back (literally) so that you keep safe skin + have fun in the sun. Don’t forget to reapply!

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