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The Biggest Sun Myths

July 16, 2020

Thank you Dr. David Goldberg and the team at Skin Laser & Surgery Specialists for these wonderful reminders!

The Biggest Sun Myths

Before you give yourself a pass on sunscreen because it’s cloudy outside, find out the truth behind some of the biggest myths about sun protection.

Sun Myth: It’s safer to have a base tan:  A base tan does not protect your skin from the sun. You’re not protected from UV damage just because you may already have a tan. Any type of tan is evidence that sun damage has already occurred. Both suntan & sunburn are signs of sun-induced skin damage. The darkness you see on the skin when you tan is a result of the UVA rays triggering melanocytes to produce melanin, which is the body’s way of protecting skin from burning.
Sun Myth: You don’t need SPF on a cloudy day:  While cloud cover or rain can block out more UV rays, up to 80% of the rays can still pass through. Bottom line: Apply broad-spectrum SPF 30 if you’re spending time outdoors even on a cloudy day.
Sun Myth: Skin of color doesn’t need SPF:  Having a darker skin tone does not fully protect you from the sun. Melanin provides an SPF anywhere from 1.5-4, so while skin of color can take longer to burn, it will still sunburn without any sun protection. SPF also only refers to UVB protection but UVA also damages skin. Make sure the sunscreen you use is broad spectrum and covers both UVA and UVB.