Krystal Blue Intl.

Sunscreen – When is enough?

Fact:  1 in 5 Americans will develop skin cancer in their lifetime
Fact:  1 in 50 Americans will develop melanoma by 2015
Fact:  The most common form of cancer among American women is non-melanoma skin cancer
Fact:  Most people don’t apply to enough sunscreen to be effective

How much sunscreen do you apply daily and to what parts of your body?  How much do you apply when you are going boating or to the beach?  How often do you re-apply sunscreen?   The answer is –not nearly enough to be effective.   Unfortunately, I don’t know anyone who applies the correct amount of sunscreen, often enough, including me and I know better!

Sunscreens are carbon based chemical sunscreens that absorb the UV rays and differ from sunblocks, which are mineral based zinc or titanium dioxide options.  For sunscreens, 1 to 2 oz per application is needed to be truly effective in limiting those harmful UVA and UVB rays.  That is one to two SHOT GLASSES full and you need to apply them 30 minutes before going into the sun.  For your face and neck, you need to apply a quarter size dollop to get the correct amount of coverage.   You need to reapply after swimming or every 2-3 hours.

So what happens if we don’t apply the correct amount?  If you use ½ oz (or ½ shot glass full) per body application of an SPF 50 sunscreen, your actual SPF coverage will be an SPF 7.  If you use the same amount of an SPF 15, you get SPF 4 coverage.  Hmmmm…let’s think about that since the recommended lowest sunscreen coverage is SPF 30 these days…..

What about spray sunscreens?  That is more difficult to measure, but make sure you use a continuous spray sunscreen and you need to apply 2 coats every hour to be effective.

Sunblocks like zinc or titanium dioxide are micronized particles that offer a different method of protection since they reflect the sun’s rays.  Because of the reflective method of protection, you can actually use less sunblock to be effective.  For body coverage, you can work with 1 Tablespoon, or ½ oz to get full SPF coverage.  For the face, a pea size application should do it, but try to dab multiple dots around your face and then smooth it so get an even layer without any white spots.  Since these chemical free sunblocks are reflective, coverage starts immediately upon application so no need to apply early.  You still need to re-apply every 2-3 hours.

Remember, that 6 oz spray or 8 oz tube should only be lasting you a maximum or 6 or 8 applications.  This means if you’re in the sun 4-6 hours at a time and reapply correctly, that sunscreen should be empty after 2-3 days in the sun.  If not, you know you aren’t using enough!

Other options?  Combine your time in the sun with sun protective clothing to minimize the amount of sunscreen you need and make  sure you are protecting your skin exactly where you need it most.  For some versatile UPF 30-50+ options that work well on a boat, at the beach, and do double duty as daily wear, see UVG by Valerie Graham available at  Your skin is the largest organ in your body and it’s the only skin you’ve got!  Why not protect it?


The Importance of Sun Protective Clothing for Your Skin

People seem to think that staying under the sun for over long periods of time to achieve that perfect tan is fun and perfectly fine. What they don’t know is that they are exposing themselves to the risk of UV damage. These ultraviolet rays have a damaging effect that may cause painful sunburns or worse, skin cancer. This is why it is always necessary to find ways and means to protect your skin from these harmful rays of the sun. Another way to do that is by covering your skin with sun protection clothing.

Some people think it is enough to wear sunblock, but the extra layer that sun protection clothing provides is a better preventive measure to block the harmful rays of the sun. This type of clothing is designed specifically to shield the person from ultraviolet rays which may cause deadly skin diseases. The fabric used to produce this is rated because of its high levels of ultraviolet or UV protection. Some manufacturers even use fabrics and textiles that are pre-treated with anti-UV ingredients that will enhance its capacity to block UV rays.

Regular clothing cannot compare to the high level of protection that sun protection clothes can give. The usual tops and bottoms only rate as low as UPF 5 which basically does nothing to reduce the UV rays exposure. Ordinary clothing alone does not provide any skin protection again sun’s harmful rays. On the other hand, sun protection products are tested and proven to provide the highest sun blocking rating. They have a rating equivalent to UPF 50+ which is about the highest rating for blocking over 97.5 percent of the sun UV rays.

To strengthen your beliefs in using this sun protection clothing, here are some value-adding factors to be considered:

This type of clothing is highly reliable. The good thing about using sun protected clothes is that it protects you from UV rays consistently and constantly. When you use sunscreen to protect you from the rays of the sun, chances are, it would fade or wear off during the day. But UPF-rated clothing will not fade nor wear-off. It stays with you the whole day unless you take it off.

You can also protect yourself from UV rays for a fraction of the cost. You buy clothes only once and you can use it again and again until you have outgrown it. You can also use this in different seasons because UPF-rated clothing does not necessarily mean summer clothes.

Wearing sun-protected clothing is not sticky or oily. You don’t have worry about allergens or whether this has the right chemical balance for your skin. It is not messy to apply and parents can let their kids wear these clothes without having to worry about anything.

You don’t have to be anxious about UVA and UVB. Aside from having protection against the extreme heat coming from the sun, these clothes also provide protection against UVB and UVA.

When you start purchasing sun protection clothing just make sure that it is UPF rated. Look for high UPF rating like 50+ because this gives about 98 percent of UV protection.

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