The Difference in Levels of SPF Protection

When you spend a lot of time outside, whether in full sun or not, it is extremely important to wear SPF protection. However, the problem lies with figuring out what level of protection you might need to wear. SPF means Sun Protection Factor. The higher the SPF, the more protection it’s supposed to offer from the sun. Although all sun block lotions and sprays need to be reapplied, the lower the SPF, the more often you should apply it.

Different SPF factors can be effectively used for different reasons and different parts of the body, so having an understanding of this can help keep you protected from the sun and keep your skin healthy all year round.

SPF 15

This kind of SPF protection is great for legs and shoulders when hiking, walking or spending time in the sun while clothed, like when gardening. It should be reapplied after spending an hour in the sun, but can offer the ability to get a nice tan while avoiding getting burned and reducing your risk of skin cancer. Skin that is used to being in the sun can probably get away with using this SPF for short periods of time.

SPF 30

Being rated an SPF of 30 means that it’s safe to use on your face throughout the year to avoid burning. The face is one of the most exposed parts of the body so it’s important to make sure at least an SPF 30 is used when planning to spend any time in the sun. Those who are fair skinned might want to consider using SPF 30 as an alternative to SPF 15 when spending any time out in the sun, and those used to sunbathing can use this SPF instead of a heavier one when limiting exposure.

SPF 50

This SPF protection is perfect for spending time in bathing suits, whether at the beach or when getting a tan at the swimming pool. It is extremely important to reapply every couple of hours, especially after getting wet or sweating (even if it does claim to be waterproof). An SPF 50 will keep burning at bay while you are so vulnerable to the sun. Furthermore, when exposing skin that isn’t used to the sun, an SPF 50 should be used even when using a lighter SPF elsewhere on the body, if you want to avoid any burning.

SPF 60 or 70

For ultimate protection from the sun, consider using this SPF protection. Those who can’t seem to handle the sun or those who experience extreme sun exposure should consider wearing this high of an SPF. It has the ability to block out most sun rays so you won’t get much of a tan as opposed to wearing a smaller SPF, but you have the best chance of eliminating skin cancer and sun burns when wearing an SPF 60 or 70.


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