dr- sobel

SPF by Number, Truth About What You Really Need Will Change the Way You Shop

Memorial Day Weekend marks the unofficial start of summer so before you begin frolicking in the sun (if you live anywhere near NYC, we can thank Mother Nature for raining on our parade, literally), you need to read this.  The drugstore shelves are full of SPF options that range with numbers going up to 100+.  This post will change the way you shop and keep money in your pockets.  I spoke with DDF Founder and NYC dermatologist, Dr. Sobel, to find out what you really need. What level of SPF should I use?

Sunscreens with SPF 15 or greater should always be applied to the skin daily. Be sure to pick a sunscreen that provides broad-spectrum protection against harmful both UVB rays that contribute to damaging outer skin layers, or receiving a sunburn, and UVA rays that damage deeper layers of the skin contributing to fine lines and wrinkles. If you’re hitting the beach, I recommend increasing your protection to an SPF of at least 30 and be sure to reapply every two hours.

How effective is sunscreen with SPF 50+?

The SPF rating measures the time it would take you to sunburn if you were not wearing sunscreen as opposed to the time it would take with sunscreen on. SPF 15 blocks about 93% of the sun’s rays, while SPF 30 blocks 97% and SPF 45 blocks 98%, so doubling the number and applying SPF 50 or higher doesn’t double your skin’s protection and none offer 100% protection.

There you have it.  An SPF of 30 with UVA & UVB protection that's water resistant is all you need.  Don't be fooled by marketing.  The higher the SPF, the higher the price tag.  Don't forget to reapply every two hours and have a great summer!