9 Sunscreen Mistakes You’re Probably Making Right Now

We all know that sunscreen is a daily essential to protect your skin from sun damage, but have you been making these common mistakes?

1. You’re Using Body Sunscreen on Your Face

This is a huge no-no because body sunscreens are likely to cause you to break out! The main difference is that facial sunscreens are formulated to be non-comedogenic so you can use them without worrying about acne or damaging your skin.

2. You Skip Important Areas

You might be diligent about applying sunscreen on your face, but have you been skipping some important areas? Some common areas you’re likely missing are your hairline, neck (especially the back of your neck), your feet (when they’re exposed), and—believe it or not—your ears need sun protection too!

3. You’re Not Applying Enough

Don’t be stingy with your sunscreen! The general consensus is that you should be using at least one teaspoon on your face alone (not including your neck). It’s common for people to go light with their sunscreen because they either don’t like the texture, or how it sits underneath makeup. 

4. You’re Not Layering Antioxidants Under Your Sunscreen

Together, antioxidants and SPF are a golden combo that help protect the skin as well as neutralize any skin damaging free radical activity. My favorite product to layer under sunscreen is Huxley Oil Essence, which is packed with the antioxidant-rich Sahara Cactus Seed Oil.

5. You Apply Sunscreen and Leave your House Right Away

It’s a good idea to apply sunscreen at least 15 to 30 minutes before you leave the house so that it can dry fully and form a protective layer on the skin. This layer will ensure that your sunscreen won’t rub off easily throughout the day.

6. You Don’t Reapply Your Sunscreen

You can’t just apply SPF once and think it will protect you all day! Water, sweat and natural degradation happen over time, so you must reapply every one to two hours for sufficient protection. If you’re wearing makeup, reapplying sunscreen can be a total hassle, so bring along a cushion with SPF protection for instant touch-ups!

7. You’re Using Old/ Expired Sunscreen

Sunscreen filters will immediately start to break down once you open the bottle, and over time, its formula will degrade. So be sure to go by the expiration date, and don’t chance it by going out in the sun with a sunscreen you got in 2005.

8. You’re Using the Wrong Sunscreen

Asian sunscreens are very specific in their labeling. You will always see the symbol “PA+” in your Korean sunscreen, which shows how much UVA coverage you are getting. However, currently, there’s no way in knowing how much UVA protection you get in U.S. or Australian sunscreens, because they fall under the umbrella term "broad spectrum" (which means that it offers both UVA-UVB coverage). This can be a misleading label because you won’t know just how much UVA coverage you’re actually getting.

9. You Only Apply Sunscreen on Sunny Days

A cloudy day does not mean that you can skip out on sunscreens! Just because you can't see or feel the heat from the sun doesn't mean it's not doing any damage. UVA rays, which penetrate the skin more deeply and cause aging and skin cancer, can go through thick clouds (and even glass). Daily sunscreen use, year round, is highly recommended to protect the skin from any forms of sun damage.

Do you have any other tips for applying sunscreen? Share them below!

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