Summer Heat: Best Ways To Apply Sunscreen

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Summer Heat: Best Ways To Apply Sunscreen

While the sun provides a comforting warmth, it also emits harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays that can damage our skin.

Summer Heat: Best Ways To Apply Sunscreen

Image Source: Dinodia

 In this regard, we are all aware of the importance of applying sunscreen before going outdoors, but it is equally, if not more, crucial to use SPF even when you're indoors. Moreover, reapplying sunscreen every two hours is highly recommended

Most of us tend to apply sunscreen on our faces and back, assuming that these areas are the most exposed to the sun. However, we often neglect certain parts of our body when applying sunscreen.

It is recommended to extend the use of sunscreen beyond just the face and apply sunscreen on the ears and the area behind them as well. Another commonly overlooked area is the neck, which should be carefully covered by gently rubbing sunscreen on the front, sides, and back. Additionally, the hairline and temples are areas that often suffer from sun damage. 

Tips to follow when applying sunscreen

When to apply sunscreen

To ensure optimal effectiveness, it is recommended to apply sunscreen around 30 minutes prior to sun exposure. This allows ample time for the skin to absorb the sunscreen and reduces the chances of it being washed off by perspiration. Additionally, it is important to reapply sunscreen after swimming or engaging in strenuous exercise. If you work outdoors, it is advisable to apply sunscreen frequently throughout the day and complement it with the use of hats and protective clothing.

Applying sunscreen effectively

Before use, give the sunscreen container a good shake to ensure that any clumped particles are mixed evenly. You may want to explore the options of spray-on or stick sunscreens for added convenience. Remember to properly apply sunscreen by using an ample amount. As a general guideline, use approximately one ounce (equivalent to a handful) to cover your entire body. 

Two finger rule

There are two options for applying sunscreen. The first option is to follow the two fingers sunscreen rule, while the second option is to use half a teaspoon of sunscreen for both the face and neck, and another half a teaspoon for the arms. By dispensing an amount of sunscreen equivalent to the length of your index and middle fingers, you can ensure adequate protection for these areas. It is perfectly safe to apply additional sunscreen if you are uncertain about whether you have applied enough.

SPF 30

The recommended SPF number for sufficient protection against the adverse effects of sunlight is 30. The American Academy of Dermatology supports this recommendation based on clinical evidence. People tend to apply sunscreen inadequately and fail to reapply it as necessary. Consequently, the actual level of sun protection provided by the initial SPF is diminished. Starting with a higher SPF acts as a safety net, ensuring the highest level of protection for a longer duration.

Apply regularly

It is important to reapply sunscreen regularly, reapplying every two hours or more frequently if you are swimming or sweating heavily. It is best to apply sunscreen before going outside when there are fewer distractions, ensuring that all exposed skin areas are adequately covered.

Apply sunscreen on the lips

It's crucial not to overlook the need for lip protection. Neglecting to shield your lips can be particularly dangerous when it comes to skin cancer. To address this, use lip balm with SPF.

When buying sunscreen, there are several important factors to consider in order to make an informed decision:

Tips to follow when buying a sunscreen

Opt for broad-spectrum protection

Select a sunscreen that offers protection against both UV-A and UV-B rays. Ensure it has a Sun Protection Factor (SPF) of at least 15.

Read product labels

If you anticipate sweating or swimming, opt for a waterproof sunscreen. Additionally, choose a product that is non-stinging or specifically formulated for facial use.

Avoid para-aminobenzoic acid (PABA)

If you are sensitive to this ingredient, make sure the sunscreen you buy does not contain PABA.

Experiment with different formulations

If your skin reacts negatively to a particular sunscreen, try using one with different chemical ingredients. It's important to note that not all sunscreens share the same composition.

Consider your skin type

If you have oily skin or are prone to acne, opt for a water-based sunscreen that is less likely to exacerbate these conditions.

Don't equate cost with effectiveness

While a higher-priced sunscreen may provide a more pleasant sensory experience, it does not necessarily offer better protection than a less expensive alternative.

Check the expiry date

Sunscreen ingredients can degrade over time, so be mindful of the expiration date to ensure optimal efficacy.


Protecting our skin from the harmful effects of the sun's UV rays is essential, both indoors and outdoors. When applying sunscreen, it is important to cover all exposed areas, including the ears, neck, hairline, and temples. Opting for SPF 30, reapplying regularly, protecting the lips, and considering important factors when buying sunscreen are key steps in maintaining proper sun protection. By following these guidelines, we can enjoy the summer while keeping our skin safe.

Disclaimer: The above content is for informational purposes only and should not be used as a substitute for the advice of a qualified physician or doctor. The Company does not vouch for or endorse any of the above content, and disclaims any and all warranties, express or implied, relating to the same.