Sunburn can cause permanent skin damage, and UV rays from the sun are thought to be the main cause of skin cancer. We show you how to effectively protect yourself from the sun.
Whether on the beach, skiing in the mountains or a sunny weekend: you should always protect your skin from UV radiation. Because the UV light of the sun is considered the main cause of skin cancer – with around 200,000 new cases a year, the most common cancer in Germany. Sunscreen is therefore very important – but applying it once is not enough.
It often happens that people get sunburned despite sunscreen. There are various reasons and causes for this that can easily be avoided. We show you 5 things that you should definitely pay attention to the next time you sunbathe.
For the right protection you need the right sunscreen. Therefore, there are a few things to consider when buying. On the one hand, skin type plays a major role, but so does age. For example, there are special children’s sunscreens. But how long you bathe in the sun and which dosage form is the most practical for you also play an important role when buying sunscreen.
If you have dry, sensitive skin or are prone to allergies, moisturizing, sensitive sun creams without artificial fragrances are best. Sun sprays can come in handy on a beach vacation. Even with wet, salty and sandy hands, the sun protection can be easily sprayed onto the skin. For optimal protection, however, you should pay attention to the application instructions. It often has to be sprayed two or three times in order to achieve the full scope of protection. Babies and children are generally advised to use the highest sun protection factor of 50 and, like allergy sufferers, to use perfume-free sunscreen.
In the following table you can see which sunscreens were convincing in the test by Stiftung Warentest.
When it comes to sunscreen, the motto is “Better too much than too little”. Using sunscreen sparingly can be a reason for insufficient sun protection and subsequent sunburn. As a rule, a golf ball-sized portion should be enough for an adult. However, this information varies depending on body size.
When it comes to sunscreen, it’s better to have too much than too little. Because even if you put sunscreen on, you still run the risk of getting a sunburn if you don’t use enough sunscreen.
You should also make sure that you really apply cream to all parts of your body that are (potentially) exposed to the sun. For example, the so-called sun terraces, i.e. places on which the UV rays hit almost vertically, are often forgotten. This includes, for example, the crown and ears. That’s right: If you don’t have sun protection in the form of a cap
But the lips are also often neglected. However, they are particularly dependent on sun protection. Because they cannot produce the skin’s own melanin and the thin skin of the lips has neither sebum nor sweat glands, they dry out particularly quickly. The risk of sunburn is high here.
Applying cream once is not enough. It is just as important as the first three points to apply cream regularly. And that goes for any sunscreen or spray. Even if a product is labeled “waterproof”, full protection cannot be guaranteed after bathing and toweling off or sweating.
Even if you don’t go swimming, you should apply cream every 2 hours. You should be careful not to rub the cream into the skin, but to leave a light film on the skin. Otherwise the protective function may decrease and the cream may not meet the specified sun protection factor.
It is also best to apply cream before getting dressed. Otherwise, you may get a sunburn where your clothes slip. You should also note that creams with chemical UV filters need around half an hour to provide full protection. It is therefore important to apply sunscreen before going out in the sun.
Even if you smear yourself properly and with enough cream every two hours, you should not spend the whole day in the sun. The dose of UV rays that is healthy and beneficial varies from person to person. And the intensity of UV radiation also plays a role in healthy sunbathing.
In order to determine individually how long you should stay in the sun and when it is time for a break in the shade, so-called UV alarms are displayed. The UV bodyguard from Ajuma (view at Amazon), for example, known from “The Lion’s Den”, protects on sunny days. The small tracker can be attached to clothing or a towel, and a free app can be used to create a personal profile and have the ideal individual UV dose calculated. The small tracker measures how strong the UV radiation is in real time and sends a warning to your smartphone via Bluetooth when you reach the recommended UV dose.
After a day in the sun, it’s especially important to keep your skin hydrated. A common misconception about using after sun creams is that they can soothe sunburn or repair skin damage caused by the sun. They only serve to moisturize and refresh the skin.
ÖKO-TEST tested 28 after-sun products. Among other things, a discounter product surprisingly cuts off as the test winner. Well-known brands, on the other hand, cannot convince the experts. The CHIP colleagues will tell you what these are.
The original of this article “Danger of sunburn: 5 mistakes that you should absolutely avoid” comes from chip.de.