Sunscreen: choosing the right lotion

Erik Vigneault

Sweat makes sunscreen less effective. Make sure you apply lotion more often when being physically active.

The warmer days are back: it's finally time to enjoy the outdoors and get some fresh air. But don't underestimate the strength of the sun—protect your skin with good sunscreen. Here are a few tips to help you choose the right one.


The ABC's of UV rays

Two types of ultraviolet rays are harmful: UVA and UVB. (UVCs are filtered before reaching us.)

You can thank UVA rays for your nice tan, but be careful—they penetrate deep into the skin, causing it to age. They also contribute to the appearance of wrinkles and break down collagen.

UVB rays are infinitely less numerous than UVA rays, yet still dangerous. They're responsible for those infamous sunburns. They're also capable of producing huge quantities of free radicals, which can cause several diseases, such as cancer.

About SPF

When discussing sun damage, the letters SPF (sun protection factor) inevitably come up. The factor number indicates the percentage of UVB rays blocked by the sunscreen.

SPF Protection
8 87.5%
15 93%
30 97%
45 98%
60 98.3%

As you can see, there isn't a big difference between 15 and 60, but these numbers become significant during prolonged sun exposure, which is often the case with sports activities.

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How to choose and apply sunblock

  • Choose an SPF higher than 30. Go up to 60 if you anticipate pr
  • Make sure the product is effective against UVB and UVA rays
  • Look for Mexoryl and Tinosorb in the ingredients.
  • Ideally, get a water-resistant product. This is a must if you do water sports.
  • Re-apply sunblock after being in the water.
  • Apply a generous amount of sunscreen (we rarely put enough) at least every two hours.

To ensure you're making the right choice, ask one of our in-store cosmeticians.

Sun protection isn't only about lotion!

Protecting yourself from the sun is also a matter of common sense. If you can play tennis at 10 am instead of 3 pm, you're putting the odds in your favour. Remember that UV rays are particularly dangerous between noon and 4 pm.

Planning an all-day hike? Wear long clothing with tight-knit fibres to block the UV rays—it's your best bet, even if you sweat a bit more. You should also wear a hat, lip balm and sunglasses that offer UV protection.

Protecting young children

Don't forget that sunscreen shouldn't be applied to babies under six months old. Cover their fragile skin with clothing if you go out in the sun. But why take any chances? Instead, keep them in the shade!

For you, I suggest

  • Anthelios ultra-fluid lotion SPF 60 La roche-posay
  • Anthelios lightweight lotion SPF 60 La roche-posay

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Sunscreen: choosing the right lotion

Sweat makes sunscreen less effective. Make sure you apply lotion more often when being physically active.
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