Sunscreen. It protects us from sun damage, reduces our risk of skin cancer, prevents the early onset of wrinkles and starts to work within minutes of application. In other words, it’s one of the most effective beauty products around. Most of us already know the importance of SPF during the summer when the sun is shining down on us. But if you want to keep your skin looking radiant and healthy, you actually need to wear sunscreen every single day. Here are the reasons why:
Why Do I Need SPF? The Benefits Of Sunscreen
1. Reduces Your Risk of Skin Cancer
Sunscreen protects your skin and reduces your risk of developing skin cancer and skin pre-cancers. Applying SPF in conjunction with other sun protection behaviors — like covering up in dark clothing and wearing a hat and sunglasses — reduces the harmful effects of sun exposure. In fact, the Skin Cancer Foundation claims that applying sunscreen with an SPF factor of 15 reduces your chance of developing squamous cell carcinoma by 40% and your melanoma risk (the deadliest skin cancer) by 50%.
2. Protects Against Sunburn
Sunlight actually consists of two types of harmful rays, UVA and UVB. UVA rays from the sun (and the same ones you get in tanning booths) are mainly linked to long-term skin damage like the formation of wrinkles, and are also associated with some skin cancers. It’s UVB rays, however, that are responsible for sunburn and are thought to cause most skin cancers. Not only are sunburns painful, they have a direct link to the most deadly types of cancer. According to Healthline: “Even a single sunburn can increase a person’s risk of skin cancer. This is because when the skin absorbs ultraviolet (UV) radiation from sunlight, it can damage the genetic material in skin cells.” Thankfully, sunscreen defends the skin against UV rays by absorbing, reflecting or scattering sunlight.
3. Helps Avoid Inflammation & Redness
Too much time in the sun will result in sunburn, severe skin reddening and inflammation of the skin. According to Medical News Today: “The ultraviolet rays from the sun damage the skin, which turns red as the body directs more blood to the affected area to repair the damage.”
4. Prevents The Early Onset Of Wrinkles & Fine Lines
When it comes to developing wrinkles, fine lines and crow’s feet, one of the most effective preventative formulas is sunscreen. Lengthy exposure to UVA rays prematurely ages your skin and results in the loss of collagen and skin elasticity. In fact, up to 90% of visible signs of aging are caused by sun damage. By introducing SPF into your daily skin care routine, you’re warding off the early signs of aging with minimal effort.
5. Helps Protect Against Blotchy Skin & Hyperpigmentation
Uneven skin pigmentation (or hyperpigmentation) refers to parts of the skin becoming discolored or darkening in an inconsistent way. This can be hereditary, but it can also be caused by sun exposure. Blotchy skin or dark spots may spring up on the face, hands and other parts of the body that are regularly exposed to the sun.
The good news? There is a simple way to avoid dark spots (as well as sunburn, wrinkles and skin cancer) — and the solution is wearing sunscreen rain or shine, not just in summer.
6. Stops DNA Damage
Scientific studies have found that sunlight induces DNA damage and can trigger skin carcinogenesis and photoaging. Studies state: “Many of the deleterious human health effects that result from sunlight exposure are associated with a chain of events that begins with the formation of DNA damage. These lesions can lead to inflammatory and immunosuppressive processes in the epithelial tissue as well as accelerated aging and tumor development.”
Clearly, sun exposure can have a profound effect and potentially cause premature skin aging, skin cancer and many other skin changes. If you think you can avoid the sun’s rays in winter or by sitting in the office, you might be surprised to learn about these next situations when SPF is still a must:
5 Surprising Situations When You Need To Wear SPF
For those spending all day indoors, UVA light can still reach you by penetrating window glass. If your office is bright from sunlight streaming through the windows, you're receiving a similar amount of UVA rays as you would be if you were outside.
2. At High Altitudes
According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, UVB rays can cause sun damage and sunburn even if you’ve chosen a skiing holiday over a week at the beach. Snow reflects up to 80% of the sun’s damaging rays, so next time you're on the slopes, apply sunscreen to the exposed parts of your face to protect against the increased UV exposure from the reflection.
3. During Winter
The ozone layer is the part of the atmosphere that absorbs the radiation from the sun. During the winter months, the ozone layer thins out, meaning you have less defense against the sun’s rays. The Skin Cancer Foundation suggests applying SPF to your entire body before you get dressed. At a minimum, they recommend applying sunscreen to areas that aren't covered by clothes, like your ears, neck, scalp, hands and your face (but you already knew that).
4. On Cloudy Days
The Skin Cancer Foundation also states that even when it’s cloudy, up to 80% of the sun’s UV radiation reaches Earth. Unfortunately, that means outside activity on an overcast day (any season of the year) can still result in skin damage.
5. Through Light Clothing
You would assume that all clothing protects us from sun damage, but some lightweight fabrics like silk, crepe or cotton tend to allow light through. Also, the lighter the color of the garment, the more likely sunlight will hit the skin. For example, a white cotton t-shirt only protects with the equivalency of SPF 5! For more protection, wear dark-colored, dense fabrics. Synthetic and semisynthetic fibers like polyester or rayon, plus heavy, tightly woven fabrics like wool, denim or corduroy, provide the most defense — though they may not be what you reach for on a sweltering summer day!
Watch Lead Skin Care Trainer Natalie Pergar as she reveals her favorite all-mineral SPF moisturizers, perfect for daily use.
What SPF Is Best For Everyday Use?
When choosing a sunscreen, look for the phrase “broad spectrum.” This description signals that the formula protects against both UVA and UVB rays. Next, check the sun protection factor (SPF) number that rates the sunscreen’s effectiveness in blocking UV rays. For your best defense, select a sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher.
Our all-mineral SPF sunscreens are formulated specifically for the face and neck. Each formula is free from silicones and brimming with natural, organic botanicals and active ingredients to deliver targeted skin benefits, all while helping you stay protected from sun damage, every day.
Our all-mineral SPF formulas are:
- Perfect for daily use
- Made with zinc oxide for all-mineral SPF protection
- Silicone free
1. Lilikoi Mineral Defense Sport Sunscreen
If you’re looking for more than an SPF moisturizer for your daily sunscreen, our all-mineral range includes the Lilikoi Mineral Defense Sport Sunscreen for protection from head to toe. Reach for this water-resistant sport sunscreen for face and body to stay protected during your favorite outdoor activities. Perfect for all skin types. For best results, reapply after 40 minutes of swimming or sweating.
2. Rosehip & Lemongrass Lip Balm
Moisturize, soften and protect your lips with this hydrating all-natural SPF 15 lip balm that defends dry lips against harmful UV exposure, while soothing rosehip oil relieves dryness and rejuvenating lavender restores softness. Dry, weather-ravaged lips will be perfectly moisturized and protected from future damage.
3. Radiant Protection SPF Fluid
The newest addition to our sunscreen collection, the Radiant Protection SPF Fluid combines the benefits of bakuchiol — a retinol alternative that smooths skin’s texture to minimize the visible signs of aging — and niacinamide, which helps support the skin barrier and hydration. This SPF 30 sunscreen is perfect for dry to combination skin types.
4. Tropical Vanilla Day Cream SPF 40
With a fresh tropical vanilla scent, this day cream is formulated with shea butter, vanilla and all mineral SPF 40 protection to revitalize skin and help prevent sunburn. Plus, it's suitable for all skin types.
5. Bright Skin Moisturizer SPF 40
This daily moisturizer is complete with Natural Hydroquinone Alternative and Swiss Alpine Plant Extracts with SPF 40 all-mineral protection. This potent formula is designed to target the appearance of hyperpigmentation and help prevent sunburn. If you have normal to combination skin, this SPF is the one for you.
6. Lilikoi Daily Defense Moisturizer SPF 40
This all-in-one lightweight daily moisturizer is formulated with cocoa seed extract and satsuma mandarin peel. With SPF 40 all-mineral protection, this moisturizer improves the appearance of skin exposed to blue light stress and pollution. Customer Jess M. left an online review saying calling it "My new favorite moisturizer," and saying "A little goes a long way ... The smell is to die for!! I just can’t get enough!"
How To Apply An SPF Moisturizer
- Treat skin first by applying a layer of serum or concentrate
- Dispense a pea-sized amount of moisturizer onto hands
- Rub hands to warm up moisturizer
- Apply onto high points of the face first – forehead, nose, cheeks
- Work moisturizer into the rest of the face, and apply to larger areas like neck and chest last
- Add more gradually if coverage is not enough