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Putting on sunscreen seems like a no-brainer. You just slap it on and go, right? Kind of. But there’s a little more to it than that if you want to maximize your product and actually stay protected from sun damage. 

Because even if you’ve taken time to wear SPF in the morning, you can still face several health risks like sunburn, premature aging, and yes, skin cancer. So what exactly is the right way to apply sunscreen? Keep reading. 

Choose the right level of SPF

The SPF number is probably the first thing you notice on packaging, but what is the right level of SPF to use? Does higher SPF mean better? In general, opt for at least SPF 15. But experts recommend using a minimum of SPF 30, which means it would take your skin 30 times longer to burn under the sun. Higher SPF doesn’t necessarily equate to more protection; it simply means you can stay under the sun for longer without burning. 

So if you’ll be outdoors for an extended period of time, go for a product with SPF 50. Just be wary of anything over SPF 50. Previous reports have shown that these higher SPF products tend to give a false sense of security, while only offering marginally better protection. 

Lastly, make sure your sunscreen can shield against both UVA (aging) and UVB (burning) rays. Keep an eye out for that ‘broad spectrum’ label!

Find the right sunscreen for your needs

Raise your hand if you hate sunscreen because it makes you feel sticky, or if you think sunscreen makes make-up cakey. We’ve all been there! Thankfully, many formulas nowadays are lightweight, super absorbent, and pretty much invisible on skin. 

At Everyday Humans, all our face and body sunscreens are designed for easy daily use. You won’t find chlorine scents, goopy textures, or anything that only feels good when you’re half-naked at the beach. We even infuse them with extra nourishing ingredients like hyaluronic acid, so it feels like skincare but better — like, way better. 

Another thing to consider is your skin type. If you have sensitive skin, a mineral-based sunscreen is best to lessen the chances of irritation. Our Rose From Above sunscreen is ideal, as it also comes with soothing and nourishing ingredients such as upcycled rose oil, ceramides, and yucca root. Meanwhile, if you’re looking for a multi-tasking sunscreen, our trusty Resting Beach Face sunscreen serum fits the bill. Aside from being non-comedogenic and perfect for all skin types, it’s hydrating enough to replace your moisturizer. Yas, options!

Apply enough sunscreen for each part of your body

If there’s one skincare product you should be generous with, it’s sunscreen. According to studies, most people only apply 25-50% of the recommended amount, so your sunscreen may not be doing its full job. 

For the average adult, 1 ounce (AKA 1 shot glass) is needed to completely cover your body, and a nickel-sized dollop for your face. Don’t forget other commonly forgotten areas, like the tops of your feet, ears, neck, and hands. These aren’t exempt from sun damage and skin cancer! Do this at least 15-30 minutes before heading outside. 

Reapply, reapply, reapply

There is no sunscreen on the planet that stays on all day. Even though it’s labeled sweat-proof or water-resistant, you still need to reapply every two hours or immediately after sweating, swimming, or toweling. Yes, this applies to beach trips, music festivals, grocery runs, and even when you’re just jogging around your neighborhood. Otherwise, the SPF will eventually get diluted and stop working. 

Wondering how to reapply sunscreen with makeup? Take a beauty sponge and some product, and gently dab it over your foundation. With the right lightweight formula, you shouldn’t worry about messing up your contour. 

Congrats. You’ve now got an MBA in sun protection. These might sound overwhelming, but it’s a small price to pay to keep yourself protected from sun damage. Keep these tips in mind the next time you slather on some SPF. 

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