Why Sunscreen Is More Than Just A Trend

With summer at our doorstep, the sun is practically unavoidable—which is why sunscreen is a must to avoid the ever-so painful sunburn.


If you are anything like myself, you may be keeping up with SkinTok, the skincare community on TikTok. Chances are, you may have scrolled through a handful of trendy videos where skincare influencers are drenching their faces with globs of sunscreen, which is quite shocking to see at first glance.


But what is the point of it? Is wearing sunscreen just a trend? The short answer is: no. Putting the entire bottle of sunscreen on your face: yes. Here is the breakdown of why sunscreen is more than just a gimmicky trend.

Photo by @MoosePhotos on Pexels


History of Sunscreen

Sunscreen has been around for centuries. The first record of sun protection came from the ancient Egyptians who sought out pale skin. In an attempt to shield themselves from the sun, they became familiar with natural ingredients such as lupine, rice bran, and Jasmine. However, it wouldn’t be until 1928 when the founder of L’Oréal, Eugene Schueller, used benzyl salicylate to commercialize sunscreen as we know it now.



Now more than ever, sunscreen is crucial to your everyday skincare routine.


Why it’s important

As much as it is a light-hearted trend to try and put on as much sunscreen as possible, the ozone layer is depleting, and with that comes the increase of harmful UV rays. The increase in UV rays can lead to a heightened risk of sunburn, skin discoloration, fast aging, and, worst-case scenario, skin cancer.



How does it work?

There are two types of sunscreen: physical and chemical. Physical sunscreen types work by protecting the skin as if it were a physical shield, stopping and catching the UV rays before they reach the skin further inflicting damage. Particles such as zinc oxide and titanium oxide reflect the UV radiation from the skin. Whereas the chemical sunscreen reacts with the radiation before it perforates the skin, absorbing the rays and letting go of the energy as heat.



How to wear it

The "two-finger" method is a good measure of how much sunscreen you should be using. This method requires two strips of sunscreen to be squeezed from the base to the tip of both your pointer and middle finger. To be entirely effective for all-day wear, sunscreen must be reapplied every two hours as the lotion is susceptible to breaking down throughout the day from exposure to direct sunlight.



What sunscreen is right for you

Based on your skin type, there are certain sunscreens you should avoid and ones you should opt for to get the most optimal wear out of your sunscreen. If your skin is prone to oily or acne-prone skin type, opting for an oil-free sunscreen is essential—lookout for mineral sunscreens like these formulas. If you find that your skin is on the drier end of the spectrum, look for sunscreens that contain hyaluronic acid or ceramides, use a moisturizer before your sunscreen application.



Here are 4 great sunscreen options depending on your skin type:


1. EltaMD UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF 46

(Best for oily skin)


Amazon




2. Tizo 2 Non-Tinted Facial Mineral Sunscreen SPF 40

(Best for acne-prone skin)


Amazon




3. Peter Thomas Roth Water Drench SPF 45 Hyaluronic Cloud Moisturizer

(Best for dry skin)


Amazon




4. Supergoop! Unseen Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 40

(Best for darker skin complexions)


Amazon




Next trip to the beach, make sure to share your newfound knowledge of sunscreen with your friends and family. Don’t be afraid to take on the role of the nagging mother, if it means it will persuade your loved ones to suit up against the sun's rays.


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