Picking the Right Sunblock

by Charlotte Wood
(last updated September 12, 2016)

When the summer months roll around, naturally you want to spend more time outside, taking in the sun and the warmth of those perfect summer days. Spending time outside in the sun—especially during the summer—is natural and fun, but you will want to take certain precautions to protect yourself against the harmful effects of the sun. The sun is great and is especially fun during the summer, but the sun does pose risks and can actually really harm you. UV rays can not only give you sunburns, but can also even lead to skin cancer. If you plan on spending a lot of time outside—even if you don't spend too much time outside—you want to wear sunblock, and you need to know how to pick the right kind.

Picking the right sunblock isn't too hard—you just need to know the right guidelines to follow. As you probably know, there are different grades or levels to sunscreen, called SPF. There's SPF 15, 20, 25, 30, and so on. Depending on the brand, you could even go all the way up to75 SPF. The higher the SPF, the greater protection the sunblock will provide. When picking sunblock, you will need to consider your needs, considering what you'll be doing, how much sun exposure you'll be getting, etc. The more sun exposure you'll have, the more intense level of sun exposure, all will help determine the level of SPF you'll need. SPF 15 probably isn't the best if you're going to be spending any amount of extended time outside. For everyday, normal exposure to the sun, SPF 15 will probably suffice, but for anything more than your usual walking around, etc. will require a higher SPF.

The other thing to remember about sunblock is that for it to work, you need to keep it applied. (I know, go figure, right?) This may seem like a pretty obvious statement, but if you're swimming or hiking or brushing up against things, the sunscreen is bound to come off, so regardless of what kind of sunblock you choose, you do need to keep applying for it to be effective. The sunblock won't do anything if it's not constantly reapplied.

Summertime is fun and provides plenty of outdoor, sunny activities; however, if you want to truly enjoy your summer, you need to protect yourself against the harmful effects of the sun. By picking the right sunblock with the appropriate SPF and keeping it applied regularly, you'll be set for the best summer!

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