SPF: What you need to know

SPF: What you need to know
Sun protection is arguably the most important step in any great skincare routine. But what exactly are you protecting yourself from? Wrinkles, leathery skin, and hyperpigmentation will happen with sun exposure - even if you can’t see it right now. And when you do, it’ll be much harder to reverse (even with the best of anti-aging skincare). So let’s talk sun damage - the why and how you should protect your skin.

UVA, UVB and you. 

We all love sunny weather, but the effects it can have on your skin aren’t so bright. The sun emits different types of radiation, with UVA and UVB rays being the main culprits in skin damage. UVB rays are the shorter of the two wavelengths and are known to stimulate the production of vitamin D. But they are also responsible for sun tanning and burns. 

UVA rays have a longer wavelength and penetrate beyond the skin’s surface. They aren’t responsible for tanning or burns, but they are the culprit in when it comes to aging your skin. Studies show that prolonged or repeated sun exposure is to blame for most visible skin damage and degradation such as premature aging, loss of firmness, reddening, hyper-pigmentation, and an increased tendency to get irritated and bruised. Both UVA and UVB rays can contribute to an increased risk of skin cancer. Because of the potential for damage from both types of rays, it’s important to stick with sunscreens that offer broad-spectrum protection. 



Not just for sunny beach days. 

Most of us only reach for our sunscreen when it’s a sunny day and we’re planning to spend our time outside. But, this approach won’t cut it when it comes to preventing the signs of sun damage. 

First and foremost, sun protection isn’t just for sunny days. UVA and UVB rays can damage skin throughout the year on snowy, rainy, and cloudy days. Wearing sun protection whenever you’ll be outside is crucial to healthy skin. But, it doesn’t stop there. Just because you’re headed to work instead of the beach doesn’t mean you can skip the SPF. From your commute to the walk to lunch or your afternoon jog, the hours you spend outside in the sun can add up quickly. So it's important to wear SPF every day. 



Just the right amount. 

According to the American Academy of Dermatology, most people only apply 25-50 percent of the recommended amount of sunscreen. For full-body application, most adults need about 1 ounce of sunscreen, about the size of a shot glass. If you’re just applying it to your face, you need about half a teaspoon. Don’t neglect your neck, chest or lips. These areas are just as susceptible to sun damage but are often overlooked. Finally, make sure your re-applying. Sunscreen oxidizes as it sits on your skin, so it’s important to re-apply every 3 hours for the best protection. 


Chemical vs. Physical 

There’s a lot of talk about chemical vs. physical sunscreens, so what’s the difference? Chemical sunscreens often contain Oxybenzone which works by absorbing harmful rays and converting and emitting them from the body in the form of infrared. Physical sunscreens contain mineral barriers such as Zinc Oxide which sit on the surface and reflect UV radiation away from the skin. Think of chemical sunscreens as a sponge to trap UV radiation, and physical sunscreens as a mirror, bouncing UV light away from the skin. 


Clean Screen, more than just a sunscreen 

Our solution? Clean Screen Mineral SPF 30 is a silicone-free, vegan daily facial sunscreen, with broad spectrum UVA/UVB protection. The mineral (physical) technology reflects the sun immediately, so no waiting around to head out into the sun. And, the naturally-derived non-nano zinc oxide we use has shown to be more environmentally friendly. Clean Screen goes beyond sun protection, too. The antioxidant-rich Passion Fruit Extract in our formula protects skin against harmful free radicals and helps boost your skin’s natural barrier. And, Rice Extract not only soothes reddened skin, but it mattifies giving you a fresh-faced look all day. It's your easy-to-use sunscreen that looks great under makeup and helps stop shine in summer sun.