Be Wise and Protect Your Skin

Apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen with at least Sun Protection Factor (SPF) 15 before going outside, even on cloudy or cool days. (Bring along lip balm with SPF, too.)  Apply to all exposed skin.  Ask for help for hard-to-reach places such as your back.

  • Know how sunscreen works. Most sun-protection products work by absorbing, reflecting or scattering sunlight.  They contain chemicals that interact with the skin to protect it from UV rays.  All products do not have the same ingredients.  If your skin reacts badly to one product, try another one or call your doctor.
  • Understand SPF. Sunscreens are assigned an SPF number that rates their effectiveness in blocking UV rays.  Higher numbers indicate more protection.
  • Know when to reapply. Apply more sunscreen if you stay in the sun for more than two hours and after swimming, sweating or toweling off.
  • Check the expiration date. Sunscreen without an expiration date has a shelf life of no more than three years, but its shelf life is shorter if it has been exposed to high temperatures.

Source:  Centers for Disease Control and Prevention