Sun protection is one of the most important steps in your daily skin care routine. Some people would be surprised to know that sunscreen is actually one of the best anti-aging products out there! From research, 90% of skin aging is caused by the sun. You can pack on as much toner, ampoules or moisturisers there is in the world but if your skin is not well protected from harmful UV rays, all that effort would go to waste.
A lot of Koreans are well aware of this fact which is why they ensure their skin are protected from the sun as much as possible. As mentioned in our 10 Step Korean Skincare campaign, Koreans prioritise their skincare and having clear skin more than piling on cosmetic products. In Korea, it is very normal to spot a Korean slathering on sunscreen, wearing long sleeves or visor caps when they’re outdoors in the sun. This is also one of the secrets to their smooth and youthful complexion.
Take a look at how this truck driver's face is drastically changed from the harmful UV rays of the sun
Did you know that sunscreen also helps with acne? When the sebum and oil produced on the skin reacts with the UV rays from the sun, they produce goopy substances that clog the pores, causing more acne. This process is commonly known as Lipid Peroxidation. Many people think sunscreens are the cause of acne but it’s actually only if you do not cleanse your face thoroughly from it.
It is important to understand and recognise what kind of sun care products you are using to find the right one that will work best for your skin. Common terms you will find in sun care products are SPF, PA, UVA and UVB.
1) What is SPF?
SPF stands for Sun Protection Factor. This is usually an indication of the product’s protection against UVB rays. The higher the SPF (30, 40, 50), the stronger its ability is to protect your skin from UVB rays.
2) What is PA?
PA stands for the protection grade against UVA rays. The more plus signs there are (PA+, ++, +++, ++++), the stronger its protection on your skin.
3) UVA & UVB?
UVA and UVB stands for Ultraviolet A and Ultraviolet B. UVA is a long wave and UVB is a short wave from the sun’s ultraviolet rays. UVA rays are usually the main cause of aging and wrinkles while UVB rays are the main cause of sunburns and skin cancer.
However, do note that sunscreen can be removed throughout the day by sweating or water, therefore it is always recommended to reapply your sunscreen every 2 - 3 hours to maintain a good layer of skin protection.
4) Physical vs Chemical?
Physical sunscreens are also commonly referred to as mineral sunscreens. Physical sunscreens sit on top of the skin, reflecting the sun’s rays. Imagine Shield! Like its name, physical sunscreens create a physical barrier between the sun and your skin. Ingredients you will often see in physical sunscreens are zinc oxide and titanium dioxide which are natural minerals. This is why physical sunscreens are ideal for those with sensitive and acne prone skin.
Chemical sunscreens absorbs into the skin and soaks up UVA and UVB rays before they contact the inner layer of the skin. Imagine Sponge! Commonly found ingredients in chemical sunscreens are avobenzone, octinoxate and oxybenzone.
Hybrid sunscreens! Our IWLT sunblock and Bonabella sunblock is also hybrid type! With recent innovations, many brands are launching hybrid type between Physical and Chemical to give us the best result. Usually Chemical type is easy to apply and be absorbed (soft application)! But it needs time to activate 15-30 minutes! Physical type works as soon as apply and works great on sensitive skin. Hybrid type only combine both types strengths and can protect your skin from both inside out! (Shield and Sponge together for better protection)
At the end of the day, it does not matter what kind of sunscreen you are using. There is no better option among physical, chemical, and hybrid! As long as you find the right sunblock, which helps you to wear the right amount of SPF everyday, that is the best sunblock for you!
Piedmont dermatologist and Mohs surgeon David Harvey mentions,“Whether they choose a chemical sunscreen or a physical sunblock, if a patient wears at least SPF of 30, I’m happy with it,”.
5) Tinted vs Non-Tinted sunscreens
Tinted sunscreens combine coloured bases with UV protection. They are commonly known as complexion-enhancers to give your skin a healthy glow while also helping to protect it from the sun. Unlike non-tinted sunscreens, tinted ones are usually easier to blend and looks more natural on the skin. Non-tinted sunscreens are typically more white and may take a longer time to absorb into the skin.
6) One #Sunspoon a day!
Did you know that you have to apply 1 tea spoon size for your face everyday? if you are applying pea size, time to wake up! Many experts say the amount you apply actually matters for full protection. So find the right sunblock which makes you feel comfortable enough to wear 1 tea spoon amount everyday!
As a reminder, screencapture this image and check your amount everyday!
Time to choose!
How to choose among 3?
Please check all product detail images on the top! It has more information about each product! But, let me cover key part like below!
Bonabella Watershiled Sunblock : Hybrid / Non Tinted / Water Resistant / SPF50 PA+++ If you need a mild formula sunblock which is strong against water and sweat, this sunblock will be the best choice for your swimming, yoga, and gym! Not only it is perfect for your no makeup day, it works great under makeup unlike other non-tinted types in the market! Try it yourself! No white cast and No Darkening! and perfect to share with your hubby or boyfriend! Bobabella got popular with this sunblock hit in Korea. Your beloved Teatree purifying mask was its 2nd hit item after this!
IWLT Ideal Ptotective Base Suncream : Hybrid/ Tinted/ SPF50 PA+++ This product was Ksisters Beauty's first item that I introduced last year July. As a Suncare mania, I have used most of department store brands but I coudn't find better one. This suncream says it is cream, but I feel its texture is closer to lotion! Light enough to absorb fast and give you nice glowy dewy finish! Perfect before daily makeup! What I like to do is to mix with IWLT BB! Two full pumps of IWLT sunblock + 1 pea size of IWLT BB is my daily skinmakeup routine!
IWLT Toneup Suncushion : Physical/ SPF50 PA++++ Sun Cushion is quite popular among in Korea, because ladies like to reapply sunblock in Korea. But tube type is a bit troublesome to use during day time. Suncushion is definitely different with your usual BB cushion. BB cushion is for coverage and your skin makeup! Suncushion formula is more focusing on suncare! Since it is physical type, it is perfect to reapply on top of makeup. Before I use suncushion for reapplication, I like to remove dirt on skin by dabbing tissue after spraying facial mist!
After reading it, still not sure which to get? Don't worry! We made starter kit, so that you can try our products!
[15% DC] IWLT Sun Cushion + IWLT Sun Cream + Bonabella Sunblock / Get IWLT Mini Hydra Balancing Rose Mist: It is another great trail kit which has all except IWLT BB, and it comes with cute mist mini! Perfect for your sun cushion reapplication time!
So always remember to apply sun protection wherever and whenever! Take a look at some of the FAQs we get about sun care and SPF!