There are a lot of people out there trying to give you advice on everything from the best workout for your body type and the best restaurant to go to for date night to the best way to parent your kids (yikes!) and the best way to take care of your skin. The advice comes rolling in from friends, family, social media, and well-meaning in-laws. Truthfully, everyone is probably well-meaning. But that doesn’t mean that they get it right all the time.
The advice you’ve gotten about how to take care of your skin — both generally and as it relates to tanning and the sun — may not be entirely accurate. We’re busting eight common myths below. Armed with the right info, you can be better to your skin than ever before… and you can be the kind of well-meaning advice-giver who really knows their stuff.
1. The higher the SPF, the better the protection. Uh, that’s going to be a big no. The SPF number printed on your favorite bottle of sunscreen refers to how much protection the product offers from UVB rays specifically. UVB rays are responsible for nasty sunburns, but UVA rays penetrate your skin, as well, and SPF designations don’t account for those. Only broad-spectrum sunscreen protects against UVA and UVB rays. Even if you’re using a broad spectrum product, don’t get lazy about reapplying simply because it has a high SPF number. (Or, you could just come hang out with us at OBB.)
2. Hot showers are good for your skin. Maybe you love the feel of that scalding water in a de-stressing shower moment, but don’t wait too long to cool things down. Hot water can strip skin of important essential oils, which will make you feel dry later on. The same goes for washing your face! Go for lukewarm when it’s time to cleanse.
3. You don’t need to put SPF on your lips. Who told you that? We’re sure they’re great, but on this one, they’re, well, wrong. Your lips need a little SPF love, even if you can’t ever remembering experiencing sunburn symptoms on them. There are plenty of lip balms available that will do the job. They may even add an extra shine for when you pucker up!
4. Anything marked “natural” is better for your skin. Keep in mind that “natural” is so hot right now, and that there are a lot of companies out there trying to sell products to you! Be a smart consumer. Read labels and pay special attention to expiration dates printed on the items you see on shelves. Truly natural products often don’t last long. It also never hurts to talk with a dermatologist about the products you’re choosing. They can confirm for sure if natural is best for your particular set of issues.
5. A base tan protects you from sunburn. Nope. If you’re going to be outside, you need sunscreen. Don’t use a so-called “base tan” as an excuse, because it doesn’t actually protect you from anything.
6. You don’t need eye cream… yet. It’s never too early to start using eye cream, no matter how young you look (and we’re sure you look great)! The skin near your eyes is thinner and more delicate than the skin on the rest of your face, and it will be the first to show those pesky signs of aging when the dreaded time comes. And since a little eye cream has never hurt anyone, you might as well start now if you haven’t yet!
7. You don’t have to wear sunscreen on a daily basis. L-to the-O-L. Don’t kid yourself! Sunscreen should be part of your regular morning routine — at the very least in the form of a moisturizer or foundation that features sun protection. Even on overcast days, the sun’s rays can penetrate through the clouds and onto that pretty face of yours, leading to damage over time. Applying sunscreen every morning is an easy way to get ahead of the aging process and to protect yourself from skin cancer.
8. Tanning is always bad for you. If you’re still buying into this one, it seems like you should probably get to know us a little better. There’s nothing healthy about spending many unprotected hours in the sun or getting your glow on in a tanning booth, but there is a safe route to bronze… and it’s our all-natural, organic spray tan formula.