Sunscreen 101: 5 Things To Look For Before You Buy One.

Because, you know, using sunscreen all day, every day is non-negotiable

For any time of the year, the top skin essential in our bags is a good sunscreen. Wearing it every time you step out is not an option. It’s mandatory. It is the best “anti-wrinkle” cream in the market, and if you want to prevent premature skin aging, brown discolorations, and loss of radiance, this is your best bet.

Picking the right sunscreen, given the countless options available in the market and the incomprehensible jargon on their packs, is not easy. We decode some of that important jargon and tell you exactly what to look for in the sunscreen you carry along, on your day(s) out in the sun:

Sun Protection Factor

SPF numbers tell you how effective a sunscreen is against UVB rays (the rays which cause sunburn) and how long you can stay in the sun before your skin starts to burn. An SPF 15, for instance, would allow you to stay 15 times longer in the sun than you could without protection. A sunscreen with SPF 15 protects against 93% of UVB rays, SPF 30 against 97% and SPF 50 against 98%. To be safe, look for a sunscreen with minimum SPF 30 for the Indian summer.

Broad Spectrum

Look for ‘broad spectrum’ or ‘broad spectrum UVA-UVB’ written on your sunscreen. It’s the one factor that makes all the difference. It means the sunscreen will protect you from both kinds of UV rays – UVA (which causes skin-aging) and UVB (which causes burns, tans and skin cancer). Very, very important.

Water Resistance

Your day out in the sun is likely to include a swim. At the least, our tropical weather is going to make you sweat. Pick a sunscreen that is water (and sweat) resistant. It will provide you protection for 40-80 mins in the water. Going in for another dip? Re-apply before you splash around.


PABA, often used in sunscreens stands for para-aminobenzoic acid. Even though it helps absorb sun’s UV rays, the likely skin allergies, skin irritation and even pigmentation (in some cases) from it are not worth it. Go, PABA free.

Physical v/s Chemical

The thick, pasty formulas which leave a white cast on your face are the physical sunscreens, often termed ‘sunblock’. While the smooth, easy-to-rub-in, moisturizer-like ones are the chemical sunscreens. A physical sunscreen deflects/blocks the sun’s rays and begins to work the instant you apply it, while the latter goes into the skin and absorbs the rays, and takes 20 mins to begin working. So decide chalky but instant or can’t-tell-you’re-wearing-sunscreen but wait to run out in the sun.

Once you’ve found your perfect sunscreen, don’t let anything stop you from having some fun in the sun.

To get a facial that fixes sun damage for you at home, call 1 800 3000 4526 to order a MyGlamm service today.


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