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Why Sunscreen Is The Most Important Skin Care Product For Anti-Aging

Why Sunscreen Is The Most Important Skin Care Product For Anti-Aging

This post is brought to you by our Esthetics Experts Panel, composed of skin care professionals, educators + authorities with decades of experience in the industry.

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 why sunscreen is so important and how to use sunscreen to keep skin youthful, safe and healthy.

is sunscreen as important as people make it out to be?

YES. Our skin care experts 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*.

Skin care professionals all agree that sun protection is priority #1, regardless of skin type or concerns. That's because the sun is the number one cause of aging skin. "Sunscreen is the key to maintaining youthfulness," shares Marie Briseno, licensed esthetician and owner at Skin Care by Marie.

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.

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.

tips + tricks to maximize SPF

Many people don't realize the correct way to apply sunscreen is to apply it 15-20 minutes before sun exposure for maximum effectiveness. "It's also critical to reapply and seek out shade for true protection," adds Laura Lanes, licensed esthetician and owner at Laura Lanes Skin Care.

Your face, neck and chest aren't the only places you should be thinking about when it comes to SPF. "My biggest tip is to apply sunscreen to the top your hands," says Laura Cryns, licensed esthetician and owner at Illuminating Beauty Aesthetics by Laura. "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."

Think you can't wear sunscreen because you struggle with excess oil? Think again. "If you have extra oily skin, blend RayDefense SPF 30 with gel moisturizer Beyond Hydration," says Briseno. "This helps to prevent any greasy residue, especially during summer months." You have no excuse to not protect your skin!

If you prefer a simpler routine and feel like adding another product is too much for you, Use a moisturizing sunscreen in place of your daily moisturizer. "There are some amazing lightweight yet hydrating formulas out there, like Bioelements RayDefense, that work for all skin types and will get you in the habit of applying SPF every day," shares Katie McMahon, licensed esthetician at Canvas Salon and Day Spa.

the best sunscreen for you

RayDefense 30 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 is 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.


*Source: Skincancer.org

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