Fact Or Fable? – No Sun, No Sunscreen

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My dear readers,

From today, we’re going to post a series of ‘Fact or Fable?’ articles to decipher the skincare myths and facts, such as: Will eating chocolate cause acne? Will doing facial exercises make you look younger? Do natural skincare products really work better than synthetic products? Do individuals over 50 have a greater risk of skin cancer? And many others!

Send us your skincare doubts and we’ll buster that myth!

First off – Do you need sunscreen on a cloudy day?

The saying goes “April showers bring May flowers.”  With spring right around the corner, plenty of us expect to see some cloud-cover during the upcoming season.  With less sun in the skies, there’s less likelihood for you to burn… so no need for sunscreen, right?

WRONG!!  Sunburn is the soreness, redness, itching, and sometimes blistering caused by overexposure to the sun.  Can you get a sunburn on a cloudy day? Absolutely! Clouds don’t block the UV rays that cause sunburn, so you can still get sunburn when it is cloudy outside.  Since UV rays can be reflected off of water, sand, snow, and concrete, you can even get sun burnt in the shade.

Up to 80% of UV rays can pass through clouds, fog and haze. Winds and higher altitudes also increase the risk of sunburn. To prevent sun damage, always use a sunscreen year-round. Research says UV-B rays cause more burning sensation, while UV-A causes more aging signs, so it is essential to use a sunscreen that protects you against the potent UV-A aging rays as well as the UV-B burning rays.

Look for a sunscreen that has a Sun Protection Factor (SPF) of 15 or higher. This blocks 93 percent of the sun’s rays. An SPF of 30 blocks 97 percent. Experts recommend an SPF of 30, if you are fair-skinned.

Apply the sunscreen to all uncovered skin areas 15 to 30 minutes before going outdoors. About 1 ounce is needed to totally cover the body. Re-apply every 2 hours. During swimming or other arduous activity in the outdoors, re-apply every 30 minutes.

If you expect to spend more than an hour outside, even if it’s cloudy with a chance of spring showers – don’t forget – that sunscreen has to go with you.



  • Diedre

    Agree, use a sunscreen for all the seasons!
    I find that when I use my sunscreen on a cloudy day, it leaves my skin sticky and feels lousy. What can I do?

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