Busting the biggest myths about sunscreen
Reporter – Another summer sunscreen survival guide, when so many of us are spending more time outside, it’s so important to protect your skin. And this morning board certified dermatologist Dr. Jeanine Downie is here to bust the biggest myths about sunscreen. Every dermatologist I talk to say, “Sunscreen is the most important thing”.
Dr. J Downie – Happy fourth of July to all of you, thank you for having me. It is the most important thing.
Reporter – Thank you so much for being with us. So, we are going to play this game called ‘Sun’ or ‘ Shade’. I am going to read a statement about sunscreen and using it, these (……) over here, my fellow anchors will hold that sun if it’s true.
1 – It should be all shade.
1 – A lot of shade.
Reporter – Are you guys ready?
1,2 – Yes.
Reporter – So, here is the first question – The higher the SPF, the better sun the protection.
Dr. J Downie – Okay, so that is just not true.
1,2 – Shade.
Dr. J Downie – Shade, shade, shade, and the reason why is because an SPF of thirty gives you about ninety-seven percent protection from the sun’s rays. After that, all of the sunscreens pretty much level off. So even in SPF of seventy or above really is not doing that much. That’s according to the skin cancer foundation. So, which you want to look for first is you want to look for a higher sunblock, SPF of thirty or more and then put it on every two hours if you wear any jersey, if you dive in Miami, closer to the equator, then perhaps it’s every hour. Then next you have to look and make sure it’s UVA and UVB, it’s both. Because a lot of them are not both. Okay? And finally, you have to make sure it’s water-resistant, that is SPF (……) both blast every forty minutes in the water. You know that type of thing. But I tell people if you are getting out of the pool, if you are getting out of the salt water, put it back on right away, if you just played a tennis match, put it back on right away, finally if you are not sure what you are doing, then go to the skin cancer foundation recommended sunscreens, because they know what they are doing and they’ve done a right work for you.
Reporter – Okay, so the next question, ready guys?
1,2 – Ready.
Reporter – Spray sunscreen is less effective than lotion.
2 – Sun.
1 – Shade.
2 – It’s true right.
Dr. J Downie – A little bit of sun and a little bit of shade. Let me just do a little demo here. So, a lot of people don’t understand, you want to pump a little sunscreen into your hand and then warm it up in your hands and that way when you put it on, see even though it’s whitish, it dissolves right into my brown arms. So, that’s really important because people don’t like the sunblock to lay on them because that makes you look purplish and that looks awkward and kind of alien-like, not what you want. So I tell everybody, put the sunblock on after it’s warmed up, all over your face, all over your neck, all over your ears but if you are going to use a sunblock spray that’s fine, just (……) with (……) and apply in a grid like path like fashion so you don’t miss anywhere and miss parts of the back of your head and the tops of your feet and the backs of your knees in most cases.
Reporter – Good to know, so you can do both?
Dr. J Downie – You can do both, I do both.
Reporter – Okay, next step – All clothing will protect from skin and sun damage. Guys?
1,2 – Shady.
Dr. J Downie – So, this is a little sun and a little shade. So, denim jeans give you a SPF of like ten, a white thin t-shirt gives you a SPF of three. So, those are both photo protective but they are not going to be as photo protective either as a UPF. So that’s Universal Protection Factor. So, you want to look for like the big, broad floppy hats that have UPF in them, you want to look for sun shirts like the one that is on the screen right now, that’s my daughter’s, that’s a UPF of fifty in there. That’s what you really want to look for – Universal Protection Factor is what UPF stands for.
2 – So, if I wear my jeans out in the sun, I only have SPF 10 protection?
Dr. J Downie – Yes and if you are sweaty it goes down to seven or five.
1 – Oh my God, the sunblock under your jeans.
2 – Then, catch me at the beach with the jeans on.
Dr. J Downie – And even for an evening (……)
2 – Because I get a lot of (……) there, especially at the beach.
Reporter – I feel like we have learned a lot this morning. Dr. Jeanine thank you so much for bearing with us.
Dr. J Downie – You are very very welcome. Thank you for having me. You guys have a great day, Happy fourth.
1,2 – Happy fourth to you as well.