SKIN CANCER AWARENESS: Sunscreen Myths and Cosmetic Tips!

Sunscreen Myths and Cosmetic Tips!

Summer is here! Temperatures are steadily rising, and we’re stepping outside and enjoying the outdoors while still social distancing. While we know that it’s important to use sunscreen, there are many myths circulating about the different types of sunscreen, how long and how much to wear, and whether it’s really needed after all. Let’s break the 3 most common myths down and learn a bit more about sunscreen and sun safety!

 Ladies, keep reading, there may be some useful information about applying sunscreen with your cosmetics J

MYTH 1: Darker skin tones don’t need sunscreen!

Your skin type is a major factor for skin cancer (Campbell, 2019)! Lighter skin is more likely to develop skin cancer, but it is quicker to detect. Darker skin, on the other hand, might be at a lower risk of developing skin cancer, but have higher death rates since skin cancer in darker skinned people is often detected much later (Campbell, 2019). All skin tones need sun protection!

MYTH 2: You just need to apply any sunscreen once before you step out!

Even if your sunscreen has a high rating, no sunscreen protects you unless you frequently reapply every 2-3 hours especially if you’re sweating or swimming (Health Link BC, 2018)! Always remember to choose a sunscreen that is water-resistant with a minimum of SPF 30-50 with UVA and UVB coverage to protect the deeper level of your skin (dermis) as well as the top layer (Health Link BC, 2018).

MYTH 3: A few drops of sunscreen is all that’s needed!

In order to actually achieve the full benefits of SPF, the American Academy of Dermatology recommends applying 2 tablespoons worth (or enough to fill a small shot glass) on your face and other exposed parts of your body. Remember, half the amount recommended = half the SPF protection on average. If you’re of a darker skin tone and worried about a white cast, chemical sunscreens are a great option that provides broad spectrum coverage, and leaves no white cast on the skin. If sensitive skin is an issue on the other hand, a physical/mineral sunscreen might leave a white cast but is less irritating.

Sunscreen and Cosmetics, can they go together?

For some people applying makeup is part of their daily routine.  It’s important to know that there are products available that include SPF 15 and higher which can help prevent skin aging.  Let’s try and answer the 3 most common questions women want to know about wearing sunscreen and makeup.

  1. Will I break out?
  2. Will it make me look cakey?
  3. How do I reapply my sunscreen throughout the day without taking my makeup off?

Break outs happen!

Many things can contribute to acne break outs including diet, exercise, sweating, and poor quality or expired makeup.  Having a good cleansing routine day and night can prevent a break out from occurring.  After your cleansing routine, it’s very important to apply your moisturizer or sunscreen before your makeup. The areas to pay special attention to are your nose, ears and neck because you are at a higher risk of UV exposure.

Say Goodbye to cakey skin!

If you use a moisturizer, make sure it has sunscreen ingredients and labeled “broad spectrum”. This means it protects against UVA and UVB rays.  Also, you want to make sure the moisturizer is SPF 15 or higher and for your particular skin type (Dry, Flakey, Oily).   If you prefer using sunscreen, make sure it’s designed for the face. Facial sunscreens are made to go under cosmetics, leaving the face even and NOT cakey.  If you choose to wear sunscreen, it is also recommended to wear a primer with hydrating ingredients. (Skin Cancer Foundation, 2018)

Foundation, Setting spray, then Sunscreen?

There are many foundation products that contain SPF 15 or higher (Skin Cancer Foundation, 2018). Some dermatologists recommend products that contain zinc oxide for sun protection.  Zinc oxide can reflect both UVA and UVB rays off the skin which leads to a smaller chance of sun burns, and skin damage. (Skin Cancer Foundation, 2018).  After your makeup routine is done, you can set your makeup with a finishing powder or setting spray that includes sunscreen ingredients. For reapplication throughout the day, you can use a powdered sunscreen on top of your foundation. (Skin Cancer Foundation, 2018)

“Never be Ashamed of a Scar, it simply means you were stronger than whatever tried to hurt you”



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  • Anonymous quote retrieved from