This Is the Biggest Mistake People Make When Applying Sunscreen to Their Faces

May 26, 2020
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As the summer approaches, that often means lots of sunscreen for many of us.

When people apply facial cream with sunscreen, it may not provide enough protection from skin cancer, reported Today.

The main reason? People are putting on sunblock wrong when they are applying it to their face.

Experts report that people do a worse job applying an SPF moisturizer to their face than they do when applying your typical sunscreen. Some may miss more skin when applying, especially the area around the eyelids.

Dr. Austin McCormick, the study co-author and an ophthalmic and oculoplastic surgeon at Aintree University Hospital, said that the corner of the eye closest to the nose has the thinnest skin on the body. Since this is the case, there is less protection from ultraviolet light.

Researchers found that many people skip that part of the face when applying sunscreen.

“We think that the stinging that occurs when creams seep into the eye may be a significant barrier to comprehensive coverage of the eyelids,” McCormick said.

A study conducted by PLOS ONE asked 84 people to apply SPF 30 sunscreen to their faces during a visit. During a second visit, the people were asked to use a moisturizer with SPF 30 protection.

Pictures of their faces were then taken with a UV-sensitive camera while they were exposed to UV-A radiation. Areas of the skin where SPF products were put on showed up darker on the photos.

Data of the photos showed people missed almost 17% of the face when using SPF moisturizer, compared to 11% when applying regular sunblock.

The authors wrote that the difference was “primarily due to decreased coverage of the eyelid regions.”

Only 5 of the 84 people covered the corner of the eye closest to the nose with sunscreen.

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