Wednesday, February 8, 2012

ATB Beauty Notes: Why you still get a tan when using sunscreens


There are many reasons why you may still be getting some tan despite diligent use of sunscreen. One likely cause is the fact that even the best of sunscreens still let some sun rays through. A high SPF number is not about better or deeper protection, but only longer protection.


High SPF numbers give the false impression they can provide enhanced protection when that is not the case. A well-formulated sunscreen with an SPF 70 still only protects your skin from about 98% of the sun’s rays. 



That means 2% of the sun’s rays are still getting through, and that can trigger melanin production, the skin’s tanning response.


This is especially true for those with darker skin tones or for those who have a lot of previous sun damage, because for them hypermelanin production is more likely to take place.

from: The Original Beauty Bible by Paula Begoun


What does this mean for you?

Don't rely only on a sunscreen to prevent sun damage & tanning. Look at multiple levels of protection. So along with an sunscreen, also consider using a cap / scarf / sunglasses / umbrella. 

27 comments:

  1. oh yes! i always TAN no matter what :( i think my skin is very tan-prone :( which is why i generally have foundations in different shades :P

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    1. That must be real bother Sam, I generally need a darker one during summers :)

      Delete
  2. I don't tan in Canada, especially in winter even when I don't wear sunscreen...but if i am in india or elsewhere hot, i do tan very easily. I think Indian skin is too sensitive to sun and not to mention, the sun in India is CRAZY! Well, at least no vitamin d deficiency.

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    Replies
    1. You are lucky.. I need to wear sunscreen everyday :)

      You'd be surprised, but actually a lot of Indians have vit D deficiency despite the sun.. dunno why though :P

      Delete
  3. Tanning = Being in Chennai ...do i need to say more...
    Whatever SPF you use...its useless here in this hottest city

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    Replies
    1. I can understand. I was in Kerala for 5 days for a holiday, and even I returned completely toasted :P

      Delete
  4. Great and Informative Post Tanveer :)

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  5. I ♥ these atb-beauty-notes posts!

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  6. I didn't know higher SPF means longer protection, i really thought it means better protection

    Very informative post :)

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    Replies
    1. Yup, Siri.. SPF is an indicator of how long you can be in sun w/o getting sun-burnt. Not better protection.

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  7. Nice post..I feel sunscreen bottles shud actually write the amount of time it stays effective

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    1. Errr.. kejal, they can't do that. If you read up on how SPF works, the time / minutes it stays effective is "time it takes you to get sun-burnt" multiplied by the SPF..

      Now the time it takes a person to get sun-burnt varies not only from skin type, but also depends on your melanin content to begin and a host of other things. It's not the same across ppl of the same race too :D

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  8. Ohh..I actually thot spf meant the strength of the sunscreen..didn't know it stood for the duration!!
    Thanks for the info!! :)

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  9. Oh! i always wondered y iwas tanning even aftr lathering sunscreen in the highest spf availble! now i kno....Thanx so much Tans :)

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    Replies
    1. LOL! Zara, I guess we are just destined to get some sun tan no matter what we do :D

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  10. even i did some research long ago on this topic after a vacation...hahaha..so here goes my two cents...its all about the ingredients and the consistency of the product...physical sunscreens {and mostly all we use} contain heavy metals which prevent tanning, however the consistency needs to be thick and almost always "cosmetically disagreeble"...ingredients like cinnamates, quinones {found in greater quantities in sunscreens} prevent UV but not tanning...there's a long reason for that but i'll skip it and as u said use umbrellas and hats!!!

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    1. I know what you mean... to be effective, the sunscreen needs to be lathered on a thick layer - which may make it sticky as well as white cast issues. :D

      Yup, combination seems like the best thing, sunscreen + some physical protection :D

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    2. ya i used to apply calamine for a long time...then as my skin improved and i discovered makeup i let go off that wonder product...after i did this research i was like damn should have used calamine all along instead of these cosmetic sunscreens!!!

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  11. did anyone know prolonged exposure to tv screens,computer screens etc causes hyper-pigmentation too!!!!

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    1. I have heard about this Vini.. even heard that cooks who tend to slave on hot stoves the entire day have quite a bit of hyperpigmentation. But I am not sure if this is really true or just an urban myth.. It is quite difficult to escape screens these days :D

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  12. yup there is no escaping screens, but i wish it was an urban myth as my derm told me abt this!!!!!
    lamest part of reality i tell u :(

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  13. nice post..very informative...i read somewhr tht sunscreens can help from UVA n UVB rays to some ext but it wont help preventing tanning..u use it or not..getting tanned is a must :)

    ReplyDelete

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