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Published on July 16, 2021

5 Tips to Protect Your Skin from the Sun

5 Tips for Protecting Your Skin from the Sun

It’s summertime, and many of us are headed to the beach for sand, surf and sun! But don’t forget— skin cancer affects 9,500 people every day, and 1 in 5 people get skin cancer in their lifetime. Don’t let yourself be a statistic!

Everyone knows that sunscreen is important. But are you getting the most out of yours? Here are a few tips to ensure you get the best protection.

  1. If you are going to be outside for extended periods, aim for an SPF of at least 30 with both UVA and UVB protection.
  2. Apply every 2 hours, and reapply every time you swim or sweat.
  3. You need about 1.5 ounces of sunscreen to cover the whole body - that amount is about the size of a shot glass. Additionally, you need a nickel-sized amount for your face. For spray sunscreens, apply until the area is glistening, which is about 6 seconds per body part. Be sure to rub it in. 
  4. UVA rays penetrate car windows, so sun protection is important in the car, too.
  5. Sunscreen expires, so check those dates on the tube under the counter! 

In addition, consider breathable clothing with built-in SPF. These fabrics are especially good for young children and babies, whose skin is more sensitive.

Early cancer detection saves lives, so see your dermatologist annually for a checkup. But if you have a mole that is changing in size, shape or color, get it checked out right away!

Be safe, play outside, and have fun!

About the Author

Natalie Depcik-Smith, MD

Natalie Depcik-Smith, MD practices Dematopathology/Pathology and Laboratory Medicine with Greensboro Pathology