facebook pixel How to Choose Sunscreen and When To Reapply
Site Search
< Blog Home < Healthy Living

How to Choose Sunscreen and When To Reapply

Protect you and your loved ones from the damaging rays of the sun. Here’s our guide to choosing the best sunscreen and knowing when to reapply.

Mother putting sunblock on her child, guide to sunscreens

Does your idea of family fun include spending time together outdoors? Then it's important to protect the whole gang from the sun's damaging ultraviolet (UV) rays.

There's nothing cool about painful sunburns, early wrinkles, or an increased risk of skin cancer. And yet that's just what too much UV exposure can bring. One way to help keep your family safe: Make sure everyone gets their sunscreen on.

Related: Best and Worst Drinks For Kids

Here's what you need to know to get started:

Check the label

When shopping for sunscreen, make sure you choose one that:

  • Offers broad-spectrum protection from UVA and UVB rays.
  • Has a Sun Protective Factor (SPF) of at least 30. This dermatologist-recommended level of protection blocks 97% of the sun's rays.
  • Is water-resistant.

Apply sunscreen before you go outside 

  • It takes about 15 minutes for its protection to kick in.

Apply enough to be effective

  • Many people make the mistake of using too little sunscreen. Experts recommend using at least 1 ounce—about the amount you can hold in the palm of your hand—to cover exposed skin. This includes the face, ears, arms, hands, nose, neck and feet. Use a lip balm with sunscreen in it to protect your lips.

Reapply at least every two hours

  • Apply more often than every two hours if you if you sweat excessively from being active in the sun. Or if you go for a swim, apply more sunscreen immediately after being in the water.

Lather up the kids too

Follow the label instructions when applying sunscreen to children's exposed skin. If you have a baby younger than 6 months, it's best to keep him or her in the shade to protect sensitive skin.

Also, be sure you encourage everyone to seek a shady spot whenever possible. And before you head outside, hand out some wide-brimmed hats and sunglasses.

Related: Sunscreen or Bug Repellent, Which Should You Put On First?

 

SelectHealth may link to other websites for your convenience. SelectHealth does not expressly or implicitly recommend or endorse the views, opinions, specific services, or products referenced at other websites linked to the SelectHealth site, unless explicitly stated.

The content presented here is for your information only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, and it should not be used to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease. Please consult your healthcare provider if you have any questions or concerns.

Sources: American Academy of Dermatology; U.S. Food and Drug Administration

You May Also Like...

Healthcare and Insurance Basics

The Differences between Medicare and Medicaid

We’re explaining the main differences between Medicare and Medicaid—programs administered by the government that provide health care coverage.

Nutrition and Diet

Dairy-free Hot Chocolate

Warm up with a mug of dairy-free hot chocolate—made with just a few simple ingredients.

In the Community

Is Your Organization Keeping Utah Healthy? Apply for Our Award

Each year, we recognize 20 organizations that are making a healthy difference in Utah to help support their missions.

Business

What Playing Football Taught Me about Business

Here’s how my passion for playing football has helped me off the field.

Related Articles

Related Articles

Healthy Living

Six Ways to Keep Your Bones Strong and Healthy

Osteoporosis, or a decrease in bone mass, doesn’t just occur in older people. Here’s what you need to do now to make your bones as healthy as possible.

Healthy Living

Start Your Kids on a Heart-healthy Path

Even though kids rarely get heart disease, the process leading to adult heart disease can actually begin in childhood.

Healthy Living

Clever Ways to Trick Your Body into Feeling Full

Outsmart your body with these ingenious tips to feeling full (without eating a cheesecake).

Healthy Living

Walk or Run—Six Weeks to a 5k

Post Author

SelectHealth Staff