Myth or re­al­ity?

Food - - Beauty -

1 ”SUN PRO­TEC­TION WILL INHIBIT ADEQUATE VI­TA­MIN D ABSORPTION” False! While we need vi­ta­min D, it only takes a small amount of sun ex­po­sure to get a suf­fi­cient level, which is achiev­able with sun pro­tec­tion. You can also get your rec­om­mended dose through diet and sup­ple­ments.

2 ”ANY­THING ABOVE SPF15 IS A WASTE” False! Although the mer­its of a sun pro­tec­tion fac­tor (SPF) above 50 are widely de­bated, ex­perts agree a min­i­mum of SPF30 should al­ways be ap­plied. Fiona Maw­ley, man­ager of the Cancer So­ci­ety’s com­mer­cial branch, says the key is in ap­pli­ca­tion. “Ap­ply at least 20 min­utes be­fore head­ing out­side, reap­ply ev­ery two hours and al­ways ad­here to the seven tea­spoon rule,” she says. This means a tea­spoon of lo­tion per limb, front and back of body, and one for the face/neck/ears.

3 ”MY BB CREAM CONTAINS SPF SO I DON’T NEED TO USE AD­DI­TIONAL SUN PRO­TEC­TION” False! Most BB creams only con­tain up to SPF15, which is not enough pro­tec­tion. “While some SPF is bet­ter than none, makeup with SPF is only ac­cept­able for very short pe­ri­ods of ex­po­sure,” ad­vises Dr Maria Reeves, founder and di­rec­tor of skin spe­cial­ists Claris Group. “Ap­ply your mois­turiser first, then sun­screen, then your makeup to ensure full pro­tec­tion.”

4 ”YOU CAN’T BURN OUT­SIDE OF PEAK SUN HOURS” False! Der­ma­tol­o­gists are unan­i­mous that this is a very com­mon and dan­ger­ous mis­con­cep­tion. The prob­a­bil­ity of burn­ing is worse when the sun is di­rectly over­head, from about 10am to 4pm, but tan­ning at any time of day is un­safe.

5 ”IF I USE WATERPROOF FORMULAS I DON’T NEED TO REAP­PLY” False! ‘Waterproof’ can no longer be used as a claim un­der New Zealand’s sun­screen stan­dards, as no prod­uct can be com­pletely waterproof. “How­ever, a wa­ter re­sis­tance claim means sun­screen should re­tain its full SPF pro­tec­tion af­ter two hours in the wa­ter,” ex­plains Fiona. She adds you should still aim to reap­ply af­ter swim­ming, tow­elling and ex­ces­sive sweat­ing.

Try: Cancer So­ci­ety Ev­ery­day SPF50+, 400ml, $18; or NIVEA SUN Pro­tect & Mois­ture Mois­tur­is­ing Sun­screen Lo­tion SPF50+, 400ml, $18.99.

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