Don’t forget daily sunscreen, just because the mercury has dropped!

When the weather gets a little chilly, you may be tricked into thinking that our North Queensland sun is hibernating for the Winter.

Don’t be fooled!

North Queensland’s UV Index remains high even when the weather is cool, meaning that the sun’s rays can be just as damaging in Winter as they are in Summer. In fact, maybe even more so because we welcome the warmth and longer exposure to the sun at this time of year.

Daily application of sunscreen is recommended when the UV index is above 3 (which is very nearly every single day of the year in Townsville!) as it not only prevents future skin cancer but also reduces existing sun damage. That’s a great argument for slip-slop-slapping.

Furthermore, it’s not just sun burn that leads to skin cancer; intermittent low-grade sun exposure is also an offender. All those little jobs that you do in the sunshine add up – hanging out the washing, checking the letterbox, and ducking into the shops are all doing damage without sunscreen.

Don’t forget, a significant amount of sun also get through the windscreen when driving. So much so that people who don’t apply sunscreen daily develop a lot more sun damage and skin cancer on the right hand, arm and side of face than the left.

How to apply sunscreen for best results:

  • Choose a sunscreen that is SPF30 or higher that protects both against UVA and UVB
  • Apply your sunscreen at least 15 minutes before going outdoors – it takes this long to absorb into your skin. If you’re applying your sunscreen once you’re at the beach or on your job site, the damage has already started
  • Apply sunscreen to any exposed skin including your face, ears, neck, chest, arms, legs, feet and hands
  • Reapply every four hours and after swimming or sweating.

Here’s 2 things you may not know about sunscreen:

  • A 30+ sunscreen in a cosmetic product may not afford adequate sun protection as the same rigorous standards are not required for cosmetic products as for pure sunscreen in Australia.
    We always recommend using at least a 30+ sunscreen on top of your moisturiser even if it also contains a sunscreen.
  • Your daily sunscreen need only be water-resistant if you are going to be sweating or getting wet
    For most of us a non-waterproof sunscreen is perfectly adequate most days and, because it may feel more like a moisturiser than a traditional sunscreen, it can be easier to get into the habit of wearing it routinely.

Even when you’re rugged up for a cold North Queensland morning, please don’t forget to make sunscreen part of your daily morning routine and, as always, if you have any skin concerns book an appointment with us for a skin check that could save your life.