Common Misconceptions About Sunscreen

As the seasons change, one thing should remain a staple in your skin care routine.  That one thing is an SPF!  You probably agree that sun protection is important to prevent the sun’s damaging effects which can include skin cancer, but you may also share in believing some of the common misconceptions about sunscreen we frequently hear from clients.


Client:  “The sun isn’t shining, I don’t need to wear sunscreen.”
Fact: Even if the sun isn’t directly shining, your skin still needs protection from its damaging rays.  UV rays can still penetrate through clouds, meaning overcast skies won’t protect you from sun damage. Though you may not get a sunburn, those rays might cause hyperpigmentation and cellular damage.

Client:  “I rarely burn because my complexion iscommon misconceptions sunscreen, spf35, sun protection darker.”
Fact: While sunburns are bad for your skin, UV rays can still damage your skin, even if you don’t get burned. Wearing sunscreen is your best defense.

Client:  “I don’t like to wear sunscreen because it breaks me out.”
Fact: A oil-free, non–comedogenic (does not cause blackheads) sunscreen is going to be your best bet for blemish prone skin. Vanicream’s SPF35 Sport is Dermatologist Recommended and is free of common chemical irritants found in ordinary sunscreens.

Client:  “I look healthier with a tan.”
Fact: “A tan is a scar. Since ultraviolet light is a carcinogen, there is no safe amount of tanning. The risk of melanoma and other skin cancers increases with each tan.”

(Trow, Carol & Rob. “7 Sun Protection Myths Exposed.” Skin Inc,  Accessed 31 August 2016.)

  “I go to a tanning salon to get a ‘base tan’ before going on vacation, so I won’t burn.”

Fact: There are growing concerns over the public health risk of indoor tanning.  According to an article published May 2011 in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, “the incidence of melanoma skin cancer is increasing rapidly, particularly among young women in the United States. Numerous studies have documented an association between the use of indoor tanning devices and an increased risk of skin cancer, especially in young women. Studies have shown that ultraviolet exposure, even in the absence of burn, results in DNA damage.”

Client:  “I use an SPF 100 sunscreen.”
Fact:  A extra high SPF is no more protective than an SPF 30 or 35.  SPF 15 blocks 93 percent of UVB rays. SPF 35 blocks about 98 percent. The additional protection after that for SPF 50 and SPF 100 is very minimal. No sunscreen blocks 100% of UV rays, so you should also take additional measures to protect your skin including covering up with clothing, wearing a hat, and trying to stay out of the sun during peak hours from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm.