A lot of people have been keenly talking about sunscreen and the possible health risks that it poses to the body. Some of the information may not be credited or hold any water, but the truth is that sunscreen poses a great threat to the skin.

The major reason for the use of sunscreen is to withstand the sun for longer periods. Well, this might be important for those people that work in the open environment under direct sunlight and for the sportsmen but do we consider the great risks that use of sunscreen exposes us to.

Research and statistics released of late show that the disadvantages of the dangers of using sunscreen outweigh the advantages. The primary issue of concern is the ingredients used in the manufacture of most of the sunscreen creams.

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Well, there may be a large variety to choose from but I doubt if a greater number of people using sunscreen ever takes their time to read through all the ingredients used to determine which are dangerous to their skin and which ones are not. A lot is involved in choosing the right sunscreen to use.

Sun Protection Factor (SPF)

This is the primary factor that most people will rush to look out for when buying a safe sunscreen. It is the measure of the amount of protection from ultraviolet radiation that one obtains from using a certain sunscreen.

In the real sense, sunscreen is meant to protect the skin from UVA, which may be harmful and can lead to skin cancer. However, most of the people are in business and understand that the only thing that people are concerned about is protection from sunburn and not skin cancer.

This is because skin cancer is not a short term effect. Many sunscreens hence focus on preventing sunburn than protecting the skin from UVA radiations.

Worse still are that many people want to get high profile sunscreen that will allow them for much more exposure to the sun. They protect their skin from sunburn and end up exposing it more to the more dangerous UVA radiation.

UVA And UVB On The Labels

Most of the sunscreens have UVA and UVB listed in the list of what sunscreen can prevent. UVA are aging rays from the sun that penetrate the skin causing facial wrinkles and other skin damages. UVB, on the other hand, are the burning rays of the sun that cause sunburn.

In the past, many scientists did not concentrate on UVB and only had a sunscreen that protected the skin from sunburn rays. Today, they have incorporated UVA protection in sunscreens and are also listed as a major cause of cancer.

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Sunscreen is manufactured to include chemicals that either scatter or absorb UV rays of both of these two types. The main important factor is the SPF. This will only help you increase the amount of time that you can withstand UV rays.

The higher the value of SPF the better, however; exaggerated figures of up to beyond 30 are not needed. SPF is not the only factor that affects the success of any sunscreen.

Factors to Consider

You should at all cost consider how sensitive your skin is and how it works. Be on the lookout for a sunscreen with ingredients that will react with your skin. The two major important sun block agents in sunscreen are titanium oxide and zinc oxide.

FDA has also passed these two ingredients as safe ingredients and important elements for protection of the skin from UV rays. Remember that even if these two agents are safe but active, there is a major concern of other agents like PABA. Research shows that this ingredient has got a lot of effect on DNA.

Other ingredients in some sunscreen like padimate, dioxybenzone and oxybenzone have not been tested for safety. Another important factor to consider is the interval at which you apply sunscreen. Many companies have in the past been listing their products as waterproof. This has, however, been cancelled and claimed to be a deceitful advertisement.

Today, sunscreen products can only claim of absolute resistance to water up to a maximum of 80 minutes but not completely waterproof. It is, therefore, Important to understand that you need to apply sunscreen after a swimming session, sweating or after you have been rained on.


It is, therefore, very important to be cautious when selecting the type of sunscreen to use. Be keen to read the label list thoroughly. Remember that sunscreen may not work well with products like skin bleaching cream and skin brightener.


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