How to Apply Sunscreen to Prevent Early Ageing and Skin Cancer

Most of us already have sunscreen… the problem is that aren’t using it correctly to get full sun protection. Most people don’t apply enough sunscreen, forget to reapply, or fall for sunscreen myths that give a false sense of security. Here’s what you need to know about how to apply sunscreen so you get all the skin benefits and still stay comfortable (and beautiful) the whole day.

What kind of sunscreen protects me from skin cancer?

The best sunscreen shields you from both UVA and UVB rays. UVB rays damage the skin surface, and cause sunburn. UVA rays penetrate into the deeper layers of the skin, and can cause premature ageing (wrinkles, hyperpigmentation, sagging). Both UVA and UVB rays affect the skin cell DNA, which increases your risk for skin cancer.

The United States Food and Drug Association (FDA) says that only broad spectrum sunscreens that provide both UVA and UVB protection can protect you from skin cancer. “It can reduce your risk of developing squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) by about 40 percent, and lower your melanoma risk by 50 percent,” says the Skin Cancer Foundation.

To further lower your risk for skin cancer, combine sunscreen with other smart sun protection habits.

  • Avoid the sun from 10am to 3pm, or seek shaded areas when you need to be outdoors.
  • Wear a hat, scarf and UV-deflecting eyeglasses when you are in the sun the whole day.
  • Wear sunscreen even on rainy and overcast days or when you’re indoors, since UV rays can penetrate clouds and windows

How much SPF do I need?

The Skin Cancer Foundation recommends at least SPF 30 if you spend a lot of time outdoors. However, the best sunscreens can offer up to SPF 50, which blocks up to 98% of UV rays. It isn’t necessary to get SPF 100 sunscreens.

According to the EWG: “Sunbathers often assume they get twice as much protection from SPF 100 sunscreen as from SPF 50. But the extra protection is negligible. Properly applied SPF 50 sunscreen blocks 98 percent of UVB rays; SPF 100 blocks 99 percent. When used correctly, sunscreen with SPF values between 30 and 50 offers adequate sunburn protection, even for people most sensitive to sunburn.”

How do I apply sunscreen to maximize benefits?

You need to apply an ounce (the equivalent of a shotglass) on your face and body. However, the Skin Cancer Foundation says most people only apply 25 to 50% of this recommended amount. Unfortunately, the SPF (or sun protection factor) assumes that you’re applying enough. If you only use half the amount, expect only half the sun protection.

Experts add that you should apply sunscreen 20 minutes before sun exposure. This waiting time allows your sun protection cream to fully absorb and penetrate into the deeper skin layers. If you’re applying makeup after sunscreen, wait at least 5 minutes before you pat in your foundation. This prevents sunscreen from being absorbed by your foundation sponge, and makeup from sliding off your face! In the end, both your sunscreen and your makeup work better.

How often should I reapply sunscreen?

Every organization – from the FDA to cancer foundations and dermatologist associations – says that you need to reapply sunscreen every 4 hours to get full protection. This is especially true after sweating or swimming.

Do I need to reapply waterproof sunscreen?

The FDA says there is really no such thing as 100% sweatproof or waterproof sunscreen. While these products can resist breakdown in moist conditions, they are only effective for a certain amount of time. “All sunscreens eventually wash off,’ it says on its website.

The FDA requires sun products to state how long they work (ex: “sweat-resistant for four hours”), but since it can only regulate US-made sunscreens, consumers just need to take the safe route. Always reapply sunscreen after swimming or exercising. If you’re outdoors on a very hot day – like walking to a restaurant during lunch hour – wear a hat or scarf, and reapply sunscreen on areas where you tend to sweat the most, like your neck and arms.

How do I apply sunscreen to my face without feeling greasy or oily?

Most people scrimp on sunscreen because it feels heavy, especially in hot tropical climates. Ask any woman in Singapore about her sunscreen woes, and she’ll say, “Tell me how to apply sunscreen to my face without looking like an oily frying pan!”

That’s why it’s important to choose sun protection that feels comfortable and light on your skin – even in hot and humid weather. Beyond Sun Protection’s revolutionary dry-touch formula absorbs in seconds. You feel like you’re wearing nothing at all! You can apply the recommended amount of sun protection without any discomfort or fear that your face will look like a greasy frying pan.

Makeup experts also recommend waiting at least 10 minutes after applying sunscreen to allow it to absorb before using foundation or concealer. Use this time to pick your clothes, style your hair, or sip your coffee!

How do I apply sunscreen when I’m wearing makeup?

You may wonder if you need to apply sunscreen or moisturizer first. Apply sunscreen before makeup and after skincare. But since the best sunscreens (like Beyond Sun Protection) provide skincare benefits, you can adjust your morning skincare routine.

If you normal or oily skin, use a hydrating toner or essence to improve your hydration levels without using heavy creams. If you have dry skin, use moisturizer but wait for it to absorb before applying sunscreen.

Can I apply powder after sunscreen?

Absolutely! Use a fluffy brush to distribute a sheer layer of foundation over sunscreen or any cream makeup products like concealer, foundation, or more.

For skincare, suncare and makeup the rule of thumb is: thinnest to thickest, cream to powder. Apply light fluid products before heavy creams, and creamy products before powders.

How do I reapply sunscreen when I’m wearing makeup?

If you’re using a cream-based product like liquid or cream foundation, BB or CC cream, or cushion compact, you reapply cream sunscreen without any worries. The formulas will work well together!

If you have applied a lot of powder products, reapplying cream sunscreen can be tricky. You can either wipe off the powder with a makeup wipe and reapply sun protection, or use a sunscreen spray.

Do I need to rub in sunscreen?

Be gentle on your skin! The best sunscreens will be absorbed without vigorous movements. Just dot it on your skin, spread with your fingers, and pat it in.

My makeup has SPF – do I still need sunscreen?

Many skincare and makeup products contain some degree of sun protection. However, even if a BB cream claims to provide SPF 50, most of us apply only a very sheer layer – much less than the recommended 1 ounce of sun protection!

Always use sunscreen after skincare, and before makeup. If your beauty products have SPF, then consider these as additional layers of protection, rather than replacements for clinically tested sunscreens.

How do I apply sunscreen when I’m exercising?

If you are exercising outdoors, apply sunscreen 30 minutes before heading out, and reapply every two hours. Be sure to apply sunscreen to your face, ears, and neck. So you don’t forget to apply sunscreen while exercising, just make it a habit to add another layer of sun protection whenever you stop for a drink of water.

How do I apply sunscreen if I am indoors the whole day?

Don’t save your sunscreen for days when you’re outdoors. UVA rays can penetrate windows and clouds, so you’re still at risk for premature ageing when you’re in your office or car. You’re also exposed to blue light from your computers and phones, or free radical damage from pollution.

It’s important to get complete sun protection every day, and use a sunscreen that shields you from all environmental hazards. Beyond Sun Protection has been clinically tested to give you the highest protection from UVA rays and blue light, and can shield you from pollution and environmental exposure. It literally goes “beyond sun protection” to deflect all the factors that can damage your skin, whether you’re at the beach or in your office.

Do I need to apply sunscreen at night?

No, but you may want to look for skincare ingredients that help reverse hyperpigmentation, dryness, and other early signs of ageing caused by sun exposure.

How do I get complete sun protection?

Think of sunscreen as part of an entire skincare and lifestyle routine that prevents sun damage and reverses its effect of the skin. For example, take extra precautions when you’re out in the sun: aside from applying sun screen, use scarves and UV-deflecting sunglasses, and seek the shade from 10 am to 3pm. Look for creams and beauty supplements that can control hyperpigmentation and wrinkles, strengthen your moisture barrier, and neutralize free radicals with antioxidants. Get sunscreen with additional skincare benefits – for example, Beyond Sun Protection is clinically proven to increase moisture and fight skin darkening and lighten dark spots. It’s time to redefine the way we use sun protection, and get the most complete and clinically proven sunscreen today. Start now with Beyond Sun Protection Cream.