Yesterday we shared with you some facts about moisturizer vs sunscreen [Click here to view]. Today we answer two questions, “What are Sunscreens?” & “What are their active ingredients?”.
What are Sunscreens?
Sunscreen is a pharmaceutical product designed to protect skin from the sun’s harmful ultraviolet radiation (UVR). These products contain a physical blocker (zinc oxide or titanium dioxide) which protects the skin from UVB (UVR which can cause sunburn) and UVA (UVR which damages the skin with more long-term effects, such as premature skin aging). Even though its effectiveness does depend on the amount of physical blocker in the product, they typically have a SPF (sun protection factor) of 30+. The best quality sunscreen will have 6% or more zinc oxide and/or titanium dioxide.
Sunscreens are made with 17 active ingredients. These ingredients come into two categories: absorbers (which create a chemical reaction to absorb UVR) and reflectors (which are physical barriers that reflect or block UV rays away from the skin). The majority sunscreens have a mixture of absorbers and/or reflectors. They are available in creams, mousses, lotions and moisturizers.
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