Wearing sunscreen is one of the best – and easiest – ways to protect your skin from the sun and environment’s harmful elements.  It’s simple – when used regularly it helps prevent sunburn, skin cancer, and premature skin aging. 

Most people do not think twice about using sunscreen when they are at the beach or out on the slopes on a bright sunny day.   But it is so important to use sunscreen every day – because the sun is around every day.  AND it can penetrate glass such as in your windshield or in your house

We all know that the sun is bad for our skin – but why?  What does it do to our skin?  Let’s look at the science behind it.

When your skin is exposed to the sunshine, the sun’s UV rays create “free radicals”.   Scientifically speaking, free radicals are unstable atoms with unpaired electrons and therefore highly reactive.  They have a lifespan of only a fraction of a second but during that time they can damage the skin’s DNA – causing fine lines and wrinkles, sagging skin, dark spots, uneven tone, and lackluster complexion.   Over the short term this causes painful sunburn, over the long term it can cause premature aging of the skin as well as millions of cases of skin cancer per year. 

Sunscreen works by blocking and absorbing UV rays through a combination of physical and chemical particles. Physical particles of the sunscreen actually reflect UV radiation from the skin, while chemical particles react with radiation before it penetrates the skin, absorbing the rays and releasing the energy to the environment.  

So now that you know why sunscreen is so important and how it works – what type of sunscreen should you use?

When choosing a sunscreen it is important that you look for a broad spectrum sunscreen that protects against both UVA and UVB rays. Both types of rays play a significant role in the development of skin cancer.   It is also important that you choose a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30.