Are All Sunscreens the Same?


Sunscreen Myths and Facts

Not only are sunburns not the best look for an individual and cause immediate pain, but they also increase a person’s risk of skin cancer. The main cause of skin cancer is sun exposure due to ultraviolet light. The UV light from the sun damages the genetic material of our skin and causes Melanoma. Every time an individual gets a bad sun burn it increases this risk. In fact, four to five sunburns doubles your chance of getting skin cancer!

There are a lot of myths involved with sunscreen and this blog is to inform individuals of the various myths misleading people every time they expose themselves to the sun.

Myth #1: Higher SPF doesn’t work better

The first and most common myth is the idea that higher levels of SPF don’t provide greater protection. Although, 90 SPF does in fact protect your skin to a greater degree than 30 SPF would, it is not three times more protection. SPF 90 provides 99% protection versus SPF 30 with 96%. Although research has shown that it isn’t a substantial difference for each individual use, the impact of using a higher SPF over many years can add up to a considerable difference.

Myth #2: All sunscreens work the same way.

Additionally, the idea that all sunscreens work the same way is also a myth. Different sunscreens contain a variety of ingredients. For example, some sunscreens use zinc oxide or titanium oxide, which are used as physical sun blocks defending against both UVA and UBV rays. Other sunscreens contain avobenzone- which works by absorbing the rays, rather than blocking, and converting them to energy that is less damaging to the skin. The controversy on which ingredients are more effective is a common debate among dermatologists.

Myth 3: A little sunscreen in the morning will last throughout the day.

The idea that a little amount of sunscreen is effective for the entire day is another myth. It is crucial to remember to reapply lotion throughout the day to ensure less harm to the skin. It is recommended that you apply every 2 hours – more if you are in a pool or water.

Myth 4: Last year’s sunscreen is just as effective.

Another common mistake is thinking that sunscreen lasts forever. However, sunscreen does expire and it is important to check the expiration date to ensure that the lotion is still entirely effective. Plus, some sunscreens break down quickly so you shouldn’t let them sit around the house for too long.

Leesburg & Lady Lake Dermatology and Mohs Surgery

If you have concerns about your skin, Dr. Gurgen’s Dermatology Clinic in The Villages and Leesburg provide skin checks as well as the most effective treatment for skin cancer from an award-winning Mohs Surgeon.

Contact us today.