Make sure to wear sunscreen correctly

Published: May. 29, 2023 at 12:53 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

(CNN) - It’s the unofficial start of summer, and as you spend more time outside, don’t forget to protect your skin from the sun.

Sunscreen is a great tool to do that, but health experts said many people may not apply it the correct way.

“Sunscreen is the most common and one of the easiest ways to (protect our skin.) We just have to remember to use our sunscreens,” said Dr. Susan Massick, dermatologist, The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center.

She said sunscreen mistakes are often made when applying it.

“They assume they can just apply it when they’re already at their activity or they’re already at the pool or the beach, but you actually have to apply it about 10-15 minutes beforehand,” Massick said. “You also have to remember to reapply every two to three hours.”

If you’re swimming or sweating, you’ll need to reapply even more often.

Massick said mineral sunblock may be easier on sensitive skin, but the best kind of sunscreen is the one you’ll actually use.

“We want to make sure we’re using the type that is both UVA and UVB protective, so it’s broad-spectrum protection as well as water resistant,” she said.

Massick says another mistake is not using enough sunscreen --

She says you can never put on too much.

“We tend to quantify it as two pingpong balls worth of sunscreen and apply it all over,” Massick said. “You want to make sure you apply to all areas that are exposed, whether it’s your face, ears, hands, feet.”

And don’t forget that sunscreens expire. Massick said to replace them every year.

She also said sun protection isn’t limited to just sunscreen. You can protect your skin through things like hats, rash guards, long-sleeves and other clothing.