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How to use sunscreen: The best sunscreen tips and tricks

How to use sunscreen: The best sunscreen tips and tricks

Ever wonder how to use sunscreen the right way? It's shocking just how many people use sunscreen incorrectly – or not at all! Broad spectrum sunscreens are arguably the most important step of any skin care routine. Keep reading to learn how to use sunscreen.


Do I need sunscreen?

YES. We cannot stress this enough. No matter who you are, what your skin type is, where you live, etc everyone needs to apply a broad spectrum sunscreen every single day. Rain or shine – no exceptions. Even if you don't care how your skin looks (who doesn't though?), skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States*. In fact, more people are diagnosed with skin cancer each year in the U.S. than all other cancers combined*.

Plus, if you do care what your skin looks like, sunscreen is essential to keeping skin bright, youthful and glowing. Up to 90% of your age signs (like wrinkles, fine lines, sun spots and skin sagging) come from sun exposure.

Wearing a broad spectrum sunscreen every day helps prevent premature aging, sun spots, hyperpigmentation, cancer, sagging and so much more. Take care of your health and your complexion by applying a broad spectrum sunscreen every day.


Is a sunburn really that bad?

Again, YES. Redness from UV radiation (either from the natural sun or artificial sun from a tanning bed) signals that you have damaged the genetic material (DNA) of your skin cells. You may think that redness, pain, peeling and blisters are just a temporary discomfort, but that is not the case. The truth is that a person's risk of melanoma – the most serious form of skin cancer – doubles if she or he has had five or more sunburns in their life*.

In fact, any tan or color is really your skin's response to UV exposure and is a sign of skin damage. You don't have to have a severe burn to cause lasting damage to your skin.

Sunburns are terrible for your skin, but an overwhelming majority of your sun exposure actually comes from small everyday activities, like driving to work, sitting by a window, taking your dog out, and walking from your car to the grocery store.

Basically, unless you need a flashlight to see, you need to apply sunscreen every day to prevent this accumulative, long-lasting damage.


How to use sunscreen the right way

Even if you plan to stay indoors all day, you need to apply a moisturizing broad spectrum sunscreen every morning.

The best way to apply sunscreen is to cleanse and tone your skin before applying and then apply a couple of pea-sized amounts to cover your entire face and neck in a thin layer.  Then use a shot glass-sized amount to cover any exposed skin on your body. Don't forget to apply sunscreen to your hands, top of your ears, back of your neck, etc.

If you are spending the day outside, you need to be extra careful about covering your entire body in a thin layer of sunscreen and be sure to reapply every two hours – especially if you are swimming or sweating heavily.

PRO TIP: Think you're safe with waterproof SPF? According to the FDA, there is no such thing as waterproof sunscreen. The FDA states that even if a sunscreen is labeled "water resistant" you need to reapply at least every two hours or more.

When you spend time outside, always wear sunglasses to protect the delicate skin under your eyes too.


SPF tips and tricks

We reached out to Bioelements skin care professionals to learn their biggest sun protection tips (find a Bioelements Spa near you here):

1) "I am a HUGE advocate for sunscreen! UVA is the number one cause of aging skin. My biggest tip is to apply it to your hands – most people don't take care of their skin there and it tends to be the first place to show visible aging because of that. And yes, always apply SPF even if it's cloudy!" –Laura Cryns, Illuminating Beauty Aesthetics by Laura

2) "Sunscreen is the key to maintaining youthfulness! My tip is if you have extra oily skin, I like to blend RayDefense SPF 30 with gel moisturizer Beyond Hydration – it prevents any greasy residue, especially during summer months." – Marie Briseno, Skin Care by Marie

3) "Most people don't realize the correct way to apply sunscreen is to apply it 15-20 minutes before sun exposure for maximum effectiveness. Plus, it's critical to reapply and seek out shade for true protection." – Laura Lanes, Laura Lanes Skin Care

4) "Bioelements Travel Size RayDefense easily fits into your purse or bag to go anywhere – it makes reapplying simple and convenient!" –Nina Holt,Westwood Studio and Spa

5) "Use Bioelements sunscreens in place of your daily moisturizer – the formulas are very hydrating and this will get you in the habit of applying SPF every day" – Katie McMahon,Canvas Salon and Day Spa



The right sunscreen for you


RayDefense SPF 30: 

This formula provides protection for an active lifestyle and even prolonged sun exposure. It uses sun-smart technology to defend against UVA and UVB rays and provide dehydrated skin with much needed moisture. This is the best sunscreen for sensitive skin.



SPF 50 FaceScreen: 

More than an ordinary broad spectrum sunscreen, this advanced SPF decreases the risk of early skin aging as it improves the appearance of lines, wrinkles and the feel of firmness. This is one of the most luxurious sun protection products and is still light enough to wear under makeup as a daily moisturizer.



The important part is that you protect yourself with a broad spectrum sunscreen above SPF 30 every day. As skin care professionals, we don't care what brand you choose, it is more important to us that you wear sunscreen daily and protect your skin.



Estheticians: How to stress the importance of SPF to clients

It can be extremely difficult to communicate to clients just how important a broad spectrum sunscreen is. Learn what other Bioelements estheticians and spa professionals say:

1) "This is the first thing you should ask them when they are filling out their profile. During the facial, I always point out any sun damage and let them know that if they buy anything today to let it be sunscreen!" – Kim West Pigue,Kimmie's Professional Skin Care

2) "I love to show them a picture of a truck driver to show how the age signs are more pronounced on the side that is closest to the window." –Laura Cryns, Illuminating Beauty Aesthetics by Laura

3) "I remind clients that we don't want to jeopardize the progress that we've made in the treatment room. Protecting against sun damage is extremely important!" –Nina Holt,Westwood Studio and Spa

4) "I always tell my clients that out of anything they do for anti-aging, this is by far the best defense they have – people don't realize how much UVA and UVB rays they are affected by." – Katie McMahon,Canvas Salon and Day Spa


If you have any more questions about how to use sunscreen,  sign up for our email newsletter or comment below!

*Source: Skincancer.org

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