Sunscreen: Skin’s Secret Weapon for Springtime Sunshine

Sunscreen: Skin’s Secret Weapon for Springtime Sunshine



Spring is here, the season of life when the chill air gives way to a warm breeze that tickles the tip of your nose. The sun’s altitude varies with the season, and even though spring and fall have similar temperatures, the UV index of the spring sun is about 1.5 times higher. In the spring, skin is also more susceptible to skin diseases because it is suddenly exposed to stronger UV rays after being exposed to weaker UV rays all winter.  We’ve reviewed products that can effectively protect your skin against UV rays that cause sunburn, skin aging, and skin cancer, as well as skin pigmentation like melasma, freckles, and age spots.


The relationship between sunscreen and malignant skin diseases

Hollywood actor Hugh Jackman, 55, was recently declared cancer-free after undergoing multiple surgeries for skin cancer, and he shared his story on social media. He reiterated, “Don’t think it won’t happen to you, and… please wear sunscreen.” Growing up in Australia, a country known for its high UV index, he says he regrets not wearing sunscreen.



According to the American Skin Cancer Foundation, wearing sunscreen with at least a sun protection factor (SPF) of 15 every day can reduce the risk of melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer, by 50 percent. Ultraviolet radiation is the primary cause of many skin cancers, including basal cell carcinoma. This is because skin cells are constantly exposed to UV light, which can cause genetic mutations that lead to cancer.


Sunscreen, do only certain races need it?

Caucasians are more vulnerable than other ethnicities because of their relative lack of melanin, which is responsible for skin color, absorbs UV light, and protects the skin from UV damage. According to Dr. Meena Singh of the Kansas Clinic, a dark-skin color is about as protective as SPF 13. However, the index is still lower than SPF 15, and significantly lower than the SPF 30 recommended by dermatologists, so it’s still important to wear sunscreen regardless of skin color. This means that UV damage to the skin occurs regardless of skin color.


Reinforcing Photoprotection for Skin of Color: A Narrative Review
Darker skin marked #6 provides UV protection equivalent to SPF13, and lighter skin marked #1 equivalent to SPF 3.4.


Which sunscreen should you choose?

With so much media coverage about the dangers of UV exposure and the importance of protection, more and more people are turning to sunscreen for clear and healthy skin. Consumers’ perceptions are naturally changing as more and more products are being used as a part of their daily skincare routine rather than just for outdoor activities. However, for consumers with darker skin tones who dislike discoloration caused by sunscreen, the options are still fairly limited. Consumers who have suffered from breakouts from sunscreen are also hesitant to apply sunscreen. “White cast” and “allergic reactions” are commonly associated with sunscreen protection, but you can reduce the side-effects by carefully checking the ingredients and choosing the right one for your skin type and purpose. There are two main types of sunscreens based on how they protect your skin.

There are two types of sunscreens: inorganic sunscreens, which physically reflect UV rays, and organic sunscreens, which absorb UV rays and turn them into heat and release them.



What to look for when choosing an inorganic sunscreen

The chalky appearance of inorganic sunscreens is due to the fact that they form a film on the skin. In return, it provides instant sun protection and is less irritating to the skin because it has fewer chemical reactions. When using an inorganic sunscreen, don’t apply a large amount at once, but rather place it on the back of your hand or on a makeup mixing plate and dab your skin with a small amount at a time to reduce chalkiness.

What to look for in an organic sunscreen

If you don’t want your makeup to look cakey but rather want it to sink in, try an organic sunscreen. However, because the sun’s rays are absorbed by the skin and chemical reactions occur, sensitive skin may experience breakouts, redness, and itchiness. This shouldn’t be a problem for healthy skin, but if you have a history of breakouts from sunscreen, try an inorganic sunscreen or one with a low organic content.

Recommended products for each skin type


Aveeno Positively Radiant Daily Facial Moisturizer

It’s SPF 15, so it’s not ideal for long days outdoors, but the formula isn’t heavy and applies evenly, so it’s not burdensome for daily use. Recommended for dry skin.



Neutrogena Sheer Zinc Oxide Dry-Touch Face Sunscreen

A favorite among inorganic sunscreens for its smooth application and lightweight texture. It’s worth considering if you’re looking for good protection with mild ingredients.



EltaMD UV Physical Tinted Face Sunscreen

Tinted products that can be worn instead of foundation. It dries matte, so it’s great for acne-prone skin.



Bioré UV Aqua Rich SPF 50 Moisturizing Sunscreen

If you’re concerned about white cast, this is the one for you. It absorbs quickly and doesn’t clog pores, so it’s great for darker skin tones and oily skin.



COTZ Sensitive Non-Tinted

Products that prioritize ingredient safety and are recommended for consumers with sensitive skin. The inorganic sunscreen prevents stinging and moisturizes skin that could otherwise dry out.



Neutrogena Invisible Daily Defense Face Mist

A colorless mist sunscreen for quick and easy application. It’s great for when wearing makeup and prolonged outdoor adventures.


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