Why You Should Always Put Sunblock On
Before you embark on that long awaited luxury camping trip in the Philippines that you’ve been waiting for, it’s important that you remember all of your essentials – and that includes sunblock. The country is famous for its sunny summers and warm climate, so make sure that you can protect your skin from all that heat.
Believe it or not, but sun-related diseases pose an actual risk. This is where the importance of sunblock comes in.
What is sunblock, and why should I use it?
A sunblock is a cream or lotion that is applied on the body for protection against the sun’s rays. There are two types of protective lotions: chemical (sunscreen) and physical (sunblock)
A sunblock usually contains both organic and non-organic ingredients that settle on top of the skin. It then acts as a barrier between your skin and the UV rays by reflecting or scattering the UV light. Compared to sunscreens, a sunblock is formulated to shield against UVB rays only. If you want full protection, look for formulas that contain a mixture of both sunblock and sunscreen or buy a sunscreen with broad-spectrum formulation as this can protect against both UVA and UVB rays.
(Note that UVA rays are rays that can penetrate deep into the skin, overexposure of which can cause premature skin aging and wrinkles. On the other hand, UVB rays only burn the outside layers of your skin, and is central to the development of skin cancer.)
How do I choose a sunblock?
First of all, always choose the waterproof option – this will keep the sunblock from washing off completely. This is especially useful for those who sweat a lot or who are planning to go swimming. Reapply it every two hours or every time you leave the water to ensure that you are always protected. Also, wait at least 30 minutes before exposing yourself to the sun; the given time will allow your skin to absorb the formula better.
All about SPF
Choose the SPF, or sun protection factor, that works best for you. The minimum recommendation is SPF 30. However, if you are someone who is always outdoors for whatever reason, then get a sunblock with a higher SPF like 45 and above. The more SPF there is, the longer you will be protected from the sun before your skin begins to burn.
Equally important when choosing a sunblock is to check its ingredients. There are specific chemicals that can absorb the UVA and UVB rays so that your skin remains free of them. Parsol 1789 and Mexory XL can absorb UVA rays while Octisalate and Homosalate can absorb UVB rays. In addition, also try to find a sunblock with zinc oxide or titanium dioxide. These ingredients function as UV ray reflectors, and are known to be safe and effective ingredients when it comes to negating the sun’s effects on the skin.
There really is no excuse in skipping sunblock. With the ozone layer in its current state, it is now more important than ever to find ways to keep your skin from overexposure to the sun. Skin cancer rates are rising and sunblock has been proven to decrease the development of this disease. Aside from that, sunblock also helps prevent the development of facial brown spots and discolorations and slows down premature skin aging.