Keep Your Skin Looking Healthy With the Right Sunscreen

Your summer vacation is coming and for many of you, that means surf, sand and sun. But as much as we all enjoy basking in sunlight and getting tan, nobody looks good with a sunburn—or worse, skin cancer. Next time you travel with Global Discovery Vacations, make sure you pack plenty of sunscreen!

Since today is National Sunscreen Day, we thought we’d share some tips to help you have endless fun in the sun!

Which Sunscreen Should I Buy?

According to the FDA, there are a few qualities you can find just by looking at the label when choosing your sunscreen:

  • SPF 15 or above
    SPF, or Sun Protection Factor, is the degree to which sunscreen protects you from sunburn. You can go as high as you want, though an SPF of 50-plus won’t give you any added protection. Fifteen should be the minimum.
  • Broad Spectrum
    The sun sends down multiple types of light that affect your skin in different ways: sunburns, wrinkles, and skin cancer. When you see “Broad Spectrum” on the label, you’ll be safer from everything the sun can dish out.
  • Waterproof vs. Water-Resistant
    Don’t be fooled: There is no such thing as sweat- or waterproof. Look for the term “water-resistant” and a timeframe on the bottle (“40 min,” for example). Let that be your guide for when to reapply.

The Proper Way to Apply Sunscreen

  • For applying sunscreen head to toe, adults should use about an ounce or a small shot-glass worth.
  • Hit the sweet spots: tips of the ears, nose, lips, chest and exposed scalp.
  • Reapply every two hours! If you’re swimming or sweating, you should reapply more frequently.
  • If you are using sunscreen spray, don’t be skimpy! And when it comes to your face, spray into your hands and apply manually. It’s not good to breathe the stuff in.
  • Remember to reapply! We can’t say this enough.

More Tips

  • Don’t think you’re safe just because it’s a cloudy day or you’re in your car. Though they aren’t as strong, sun rays can penetrate clouds and reflect through windows, so always keep some sunscreen handy.
  • If you’re using a lotion or foundation that has an SPF amount, chances are you still need to apply sunscreen. The first application probably isn’t enough to sustain protection.
  • The rays are strongest from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. so be sure to take extra precautions during those hours!
  • If you’re providing sunscreen for an entire family, it’s not uncommon for you to go through an entire bottle in a week, depending on how often you need it. But here’s a good way to look at it: Buying a bottle of sunscreen per week is less expensive than skin cancer treatment.

But most of all, have fun! If you follow these simple guidelines, you can spend your entire vacation outdoors without wasting time putting aloe on your burnt shoulders. The sun is great, as long as you’re protected!

What are your sunscreen habits? Let us know your tips in the comments below!

Corey is a writer from Overland Park, KS, and has been with Global Discovery Vacations since September 2013. Once a sportswriter, he traveled the country and became proficient in airport security line etiquette and leaving items in hotel rooms.

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