“I regret taking care good care of my skin” – said no one ever.
SPF or Sun Protection Factor, is primarily a measure of how long a sunscreen can protect you from the UV rays of the Sun. For instance, when you read SPF 15 on a product, you should know that if it takes 10 mins on average to burn normally, with an SPF 15 it will take (15 * 10 = 150) minutes for your skin to burn or quite simply, you can enjoy 150 mins of protection from the sun!
The more things we have to add to our skincare routine, the lazier we get but it is extremely important to ensure that we are SPF ready when we step out – even when it is NOT sunny! It is common to use SPF only on sunny days because SPF protects you from the sun, right? But this is not enough. Even on cloudy days, around 80% of the dangerous rays can penetrate through the clouds and cause ageing or burning. So, no matter what the weather forecast is, ALWAYS have your SPF on!
With the innumerable concerns surrounding SPF – the right ritual, the right product, the right amount, the right application – a little bit of guidance can go a long way.
The Right Ritual:
The best and efficient way to incorporate SPF into your skin regimen is by opting for products in your skincare routine that contain SPF such as MZ Skin Hydrate and Nourish, a daily moisturizer with SPF 30 and Retinol that gives you the perfect hydration and protection needed to get through your day. As far as makeup and sunscreen go, while it is easy to assume that just because our makeup contains sunscreen it is okay to skip the latter, it is not right. It’s imperative to follow your basic skincare routine that includes application of SPF and then go on to apply your makeup.
The Right Amount:
Choosing the right amount of SPF is imperative, so as even Dr. Zamani recommends, “Opt for broad spectrum SPF 30 all year round for the ideal protection and during the summer or holidays increase it to SPF 50, preferably water resistant if you plan to go near/into the water”. A broad-spectrum SPF will protect you from both UVA and UVB rays, where the former is known to cause ageing and the latter is known to cause burning.
The Right Application:
Applying sunscreen 15-30mins before you step out is ideal with a 2 hourly re-application, more if you’re holidaying in the sun or water. The right application involves two liberal tablespoons of sunscreen to cover your entire body and about 2 pence for your face and you’re good to go!
The Right Product:
With the plethora of products out there that contain SPF, choosing the one that fits your skin can be daunting but a few tips and tricks can be your saving grace:
- Pick products that offer broad spectrum of protection from the sun i.e. they protect you from UVA and UVB rays
- People with sensitive skin should avoid products that contain PABA, alcohol, fragrances and instead opt for products containing ingredients such as titanium dioxide or zinc oxide.
- Don’t be scared of using SPF even if you have acne-prone skin: all you need to do is opt for light, non-greasy SPF products and stay away from pore-clogging ingredients such as mineral oils, cocoa butter or wheat germ oil.