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5 Reasons Why You Need to Wear Sunscreen Indoors

After the recent events of the pandemic, Australians are spending more time inside than ever.

What is usually a nation of people that are impossible to keep locked away from the great outdoors, more and more Aussies around the country are acclimating to time spent indoors.

Whether that includes working from home, enduring time in quarantine or spending their weekends avoiding the crowds, this time inside has resulted in some clever ways to get a kick out of life while prioritising safety.

But unfortunately, in the difficulty, stress and hyper-focus of getting through a pandemic while working from home and managing a busy household, there is one thing that many Australians are neglecting to include in their new normal - sunscreen.

While you may have an industrial-sized bottle near the front door or a tube in your bag for quick reapplication, it can be easy to neglect your sun protection if you're not planning on leaving the house.

Wearing sunscreen indoors may seem counterintuitive, but it has many benefits for long- and short-term skin health.

A woman looking out the window

The benefits of wearing sunscreen inside include:

  • Prevent premature ageing

The sun produces two types of ultraviolet light that can damage the skin - UVA and UVB rays.

According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, ultraviolet A rays can penetrate deeply to cause damage, even through windows and on cloudy days.

Consistent exposure to UVA rays can result in premature signs of ageing, such as loss of elasticity and wrinkles.

Board-certified Dermatologist Dr. Robyn Gmyrek insists that it's crucial to wear sunscreen indoors year-round, as premature aging is only a symptom of a more significant problem - a breakdown of collagen and tissue, which can contribute to skin cancer. Without showing any signs of tanning or burning, it can be impossible to determine how much UVA exposure you are experiencing, making broad-spectrum sunscreen application the safest rule of thumb. 

  • Protect yourself from skin cancer

This may be the most obvious reason to slap on some sunscreen; however, many are under the false assumption that the sun can't harm them while indoors. Whether sitting at a computer by the window, spending your lunch break enjoying the fresh air or driving the kids around to various activities, UVB rays are at work constantly to damage your skin.

UVB are the rays responsible for causing the inflammatory response which leads to sunburn. Once this sunburn peels, the cells that remain are susceptible to further damage over time, increasing your risk of developing skin cancer. 

  • Block blue light

You may wonder if blue light is myth or fact, with products such as blue light filters and lenses flooding the market. We can't speak for the effect on the eyes, many studies have been completed to determine the impact of blue light on the skin. Blue light is produced from digital screens, including phones, tablets, computers, and TVs.

Sunscreen is helpful for more than just 'screening the sun'. Mineral sunscreens, in particular, can provide a barrier between your skin and environmental pollutants, such as blue light, perfumes, aerosols, carbon monoxide and microplastics. This protection can aid against issues from premature aging to eczema and, of course, skin cancer. Click here to read more.

Despite blue light not being able to cause sunburn, it can be incredibly harmful to the skin. The free radicals formed by blue light can cause premature aging, age spots from increased melanin and sagging from a decrease in collagen. A study in the Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity Journal found that blue light decreases carotenoids in the skin, indicating exposure to free radicals. 

  • Boost your skincare routine

Skincare routines are one of the hottest topics of 2022. Everyone seems to have one, and terms like retinol and hyaluronic acid are suddenly a part of everyday language. However, the fact remains that you could spend hundreds on the best skincare products on the market, and it would all be rendered moot without the use of SPF 30+ to prevent anti-ageing. Not only will neglecting sunscreen make your products less effective, but the products could put your skin at higher risk while exposed to the sun. 

According to Healthline, the use of retinol can make your skin more prone to sunburn. Products such as retinol can thin the outer layer of the skin, increasing sun sensitivity and, therefore, the risk of developing skin cancer.

In addition, certain exfoliants and salicylic acids used in many skincare products can leave your skin more susceptible to damage from UV rays, and it can be challenging to make sure that every product you use is safe when combined with the sun.

After applying your cleansers, toners, serums, and oils, a good slathering of sunscreen will keep all the good stuff in and the bad stuff out.

Read more about what beauty products can cause sun sensitivity here. 

  • Keep your skin moisturised

Gone are the days of squeezing out a thick, poorly absorbing blob of gunk and applying it to your face, feeling acne instantly forming at the point of contact.

Sunscreen has come a long way in the past decade, as scientists and skincare companies have begun to realise that people don't want to sacrifice their skin health or carefully applied makeup by smattering a thick white sheen over their face. Sunscreen is now packed with quality ingredients - fast-absorbing, effective and luxurious - so you won't just enjoy applying it, but you won't even notice it once rubbed in. Think of your sunscreen application not as a chore but as an essential part of your skincare routine. 

The best sunscreen is the one that you will remember and want to use, whether that is a luxurious organic sunscreen, powdered sunscreen to top up your protection throughout the day, or an affordable family-sized pump bottle always placed within easy reach. Ensure your SPF is at least 30+, and keep your application regular, and you will soon thank yourself for the peace of mind and glowy skin that will quickly become your new normal. 

The friendly skin specialists at SunDoctors are happy to answer your skin-related questions

If you want to take your skincare to the next level, there is nothing better than a professional skin check to provide a unique certainty to your skin health.

To book your annual skin check, click here or call us on 13SKIN for more information.