Sun Protection - Importance and Solutions

Too much of anything is good for nothing is a popular old saying. But when it comes to UV, too much of exposure is very bad for you and not just nothing.

Small amount of UV rays are really important for the production of Vitamin D. It has the ability to treat several diseases like rickets, psoriasis, eczema, jaundice and so on. But prolonged skin exposure to sun can cause serious damages to your skin and even cause life threatening diseases.

Side effects of UV radiation:

The negative effects of UV radiation are classified as acute or chronic.

Acute side effects are short lived and reversible. Sunburn and tanning are the most common acute side effects. UV-B rays cause acute side effects.

Chronic side effects are much more serious which include skin cancer, cataracts, skin damage, premature aging, damaging the immune system and many more. UV-A rays are the main cause for chronic side effects.

Importance of sun protection:

The chronic side effects are life threatening and must be considered seriously. But what about acute side effects? Do you like sunburn and tanning? The answer is no for sure. So, it is important to protect your skin from both UV-A and UV-B rays before you get serious damages.

Well. Now you know the the importance of sun protection. The first and best solution is staying indoors all the time. Is it possible for you? Definitely not. No one can avoid the sun completely.

Before knowing the solutions, there is an important factor you should be aware of. That is UV index.

What is UV index?

UV index is designed to help you to take informed decisions about how much time you can spend outside in the sun safely and what protection you need to use.

How to check the UV index?

Google for 'UV index in xxxx'. Replace xxxx with your city name. There are lot of websites which can tell you the UV index.

Few websites which can help you to find the UV index: and

UV index, Exposure and Protection:

Exposure and Minutes until sunburn:

Extreme - 10

Very High - 25

High - 30

Moderate - 45

Low - 60+

So, you are prone to sunburn within few minutes before you realize. For eg, if the UV index is 11, you will get sunburn in 10 minutes.

Solutions to protect yourself from sunburn based on UV index:

So, buy a sunglass, sunscreen, hat or umbrella as soon as possible. Hope it is not a difficult task to buy a branded sunglass and umbrella. But when it comes to sunscreen, you need to understand few things before you choose one. Read on to know how to choose the perfect sunscreen for you.

Sunscreen and SPF explained:

Are you the one who slathers sunscreen lotion in both summer and winter? If yes, you are aware of the importance of sun protection and you are already well protected from the dangerous effects of UV radiation. 

Sunscreen is a lotion or cream rubbed onto the skin to protect it from sun. When you buy a sunscreen product, you need to concentrate on the Sun Protection Factor(SPF). Every sunscreen product has its SPF printed on the label. 

What is SPF?

SPF is a laboratory measure of the effectiveness of sunscreen. If you use a sunscreen with an SPF 15, then it means that you can stay out in the sun 15 times longer until you get sunburn. For eg, if the UV index is 11, you will get burn in 10 minutes without sunscreen. If you have applied a sunscreen with SPF 15, you will get burn in 150 minutes.

SPF 100 blocks 99% of UV-B rays, SPF 50 sunscreen blocks 98% and SPF 30 - 50 can block 97%. SPF 15 can block 92%.

Conventional sunscreen lotions can block UV-B rays and very little UV-A rays when compared to nominal sunscreens. But broad spectrum sunscreens can protect you against both UV-A and UV-B.

My top 3 recommended products for sun protection:

1. Neutrogena Ultra Sheer SPF 50:

This is my most favorite sunscreen product which provides effective sun protection even in midday hours. His friend had recommended this product in US and he bought so many packs when he returned along with other cosmetic items. He bought them for his usage while going to play cricket every weekend. Even after playing full day cricket match, his skin is not getting tanned. Sometimes he applies it in the middle of the match if required. Having surprised with the results, I took one of the packs and applied. I started loving this product just from single application itself.

It is a great sunscreen product one can have with higher SPF. Moreover, it offers broader spectrum protection from both skin-aging UV-A rays and skin-burning UV-B rays. This is the main factor that attracted me to this product. It is very light, easy to apply, waterproof and sweatproof. It makes the skin soft and smooth. It gives long lasting protection. It is definitely worth for the money and nowadays we are sticking to this product in midday hours.

Current price is Rs.175 for 30 ml. It is available in India too. 

2. Lakme Sun Expert Fairness + UV Lotion SPF 30:

This is the first sunscreen product I have used. I started using Lakme sunscreen during my training period once I joined my first company. I had started applying Lakme sunscreen while going for outing with my friends. I liked the product and started applying daily. My sister is using this product currently. SPF is 30 and it is value for money. When you do not need high SPF especially during winters and non midday hours, you can use this product. I love the mild fragrance and the texture of the cream. It also protects from both UV-A and UV-B rays.

Current price is Rs.325 for 100ml.

3. Biotique Face & Body Sun cream SPF 30 - Bio Aloe Vera:

This is my another favorite product. It was recommended by one of my friends. She is a fan of Biotique products. She insisted me to try this. I wanted to try this product since it has Aloe Vera. Aloe Vera is a natural healer and sun protector. I was using this product before I started using Neutrogena Ultrasheer.

The price is less when compared to Ultrasheer. But the SPF is 30. So, it offers you broad spectrum protection from both UV-A and UV-B rays.This product works well in non midday hours and winter. If you are looking for saving money, buy it and keep it in stock along with Ultrasheer. When the sun is not in its peak, you can use it. It is also easy to use and keeps the skin soft.

Current price - Rs.199 for 55 ml.

Top 5 Home Remedies for scorching sun burn: 

Sunscreens will help you to protect your skin from sun damage. They can help you even if you are already suffering from sun tanning.

In addition to the sunscreen products, the below home remedies are effective ways to remove the sun tanning gradually. The only thing is you need to be patient and follow it continuously to see the results.

1. Lemon juice:

It is the widely used home remedy for treating sun burn. It has natural bleaching properties. Just apply the lemon juice on the affected areas. Allow it to dry and wash it off with cool water. Gently pat your skin dry.

2. Yogurt:

Yogurt is a very cool home remedy for reducing sunburn. Once you come from outside, apply yogurt on your skin and relax. It reduces the redness and tightens the pores. Rinse off once it dries and gently pat your skin dry.

You can also add cucumber, tomatoes and gram flour.

3. Sandalwood:

Sandalwood is a popular ingredient used in many cosmetic products due to its pampering protecting properties. Mix sandalwood powder and rose water. Make a fine paste. Apply it on the affected areas. Wash it off once the paste gets dried. Pat your skin dry. You can also add turmeric powder.

4. Aloe Vera:

Aloe vera has been called the "soothing dessert lily" since it is a natural healer and sun protector. Apply the Aloe vera gel and allow it to dry. Rinse it off and pat your skin dry.

5. Cornstarch:

Make a paste of cornstarch with water. Apply on the affected areas. Cornstarch is a great sunburn soother. Once it gets dried, rinse it off and pat your skin dry.


Sun protection is not a seasonal care. It should be be part of your daily routine. Do not forget to apply sunscreen whether it is summer or winter. Buy a sunglass, hat or umbrella and a good sunscreen with required SPF. Sun protection is very important to avoid serious skin damages.

Stay sun protected. Stay Happy.
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