I think we all know by now the importance of sunscreen and and the role it plays in our health and anti-aging. I didn’t start getting really serious about my skincare and SPF until my late 20s and now I am religious about it, especially SPF! Any esthetician or dermatologist will tell you the same thing – protecting your skin against the sun is the #1 way to prevent signs of aging. A lot of other products will correct and repair, but SPF is the only one that actually prevents damage. It sounds pretty simple, but surprisingly there’s a lot more that goes into it than you’d think! You guys know how much I’m into taking care of my skin, and sunscreen is one of the biggest factors! So here are the 7 mistakes you may not know you’re making when it comes to your sunscreen!
1. SPF SHOULD BE THE LAST STEP IN YOUR SKINCARE ROUTINE, BUT BEFORE APPLYING MAKEUP.
Where your SPF application falls into your skincare routine DOES make a difference. It should be applied after all serums, eye creams, and moisturizers, but right before applying your makeup for the best possible protection from UVA and UVB rays.
2. APPLY TO YOUR NECK AND HANDS, NOT JUST YOUR FACE.
The neck and hands are an important place to wear sunscreen, but most people don’t realize that or think about it! The skin on your neck and hands are very thin areas that are more prone to sun damage than anywhere else on your body (other than your face), so make sure you’re always remembering to apply SPF to those areas too!
3. SPF IN YOUR MAKEUP ISN’T ENOUGH.
The beauty industry is full of makeup products containing SPF in foundations, powders, primers and other products. While it’s not a bad thing at all, they should be used in conjunction with complete sunscreen products rather than to replace sunscreen all together, since it doesn’t offer the same level of protection.
4. JUST BECAUSE THE SPF COUNT IS HIGHER DOESN’T MEAN IT’S SAFER.
The shelves are filled with SPFs ranging from zero to 70 nowadays and it can be hard to know which ones to choose. Surprisingly there’s more of a jump between SPF 2 and SPF 15, than there is with SPF 15 to SPF 70. As long as your sunscreen has at least SPF 15 you’ll be good to go! I love this one by Olay and it’s also great for sensitive skin (I have the most sensitive skin!) and I love that it has aloe and Vitamin E in it too.
5. ALWAYS HAVE SPF ON WHEN DRIVING AND EVEN WHEN IT’S CLOUDY OUT.
Rain or shine, inside or out, you always always always want to have sunscreen on. Believe it or not, damaging UV rays penetrate through windows and even through clouds. I’m definitely guilty of this at times, but after getting sunburned in Laguna Beach when it was completely cloudy out, I have been a lot better!!
6. REAPPLY EVERY 1-2 HOURS.
Sunlight slowly but surely breaks down UV filters making your sunscreen wear off throughout the day. Make sure to reapply every 2 hours at least, but more often than that if you’re sweating or swimming!
7. TOSS BOTTLES THAT ARE MORE THAN TWO YEARS OLD.
After two years, sunscreen loses its potency and doesn’t have the same effectiveness. Look for expiration dates on bottles. Sometimes they wear off so you can also put the date you bought it on the bottom of the bottle and toss it once it’s been two years!