Do you know how to use sunscreen?

When I ask my clients the question “Do you know how to use sunscreen?” they always have that look on their face like ‘Are you crazy. Of course I do!’ But, when I dig a bit deeper, I find out, actually no, they don’t know how to effectively use their sunscreen, and I think most people don’t.

So, I want to share with you some super helpful information to get you informed on what in fact a sunscreen is and how you should use it effectively so that you can keep that skin beautiful, healthy, and happy.


What does SPF even mean?

SPF stands for Sun Protection Factor; this is a measurement of how well the sunscreen protects the skin from sunburn.

 Not all sunscreens are created equal. Choose the right sunscreen.

Always buy your sunscreen in Australia, as they are specifically made for our harsh environment. Australia has strict SPF standards, so that means that sunscreen you bought overseas won’t cut the mustard.

When choosing a sunscreen, whether it is from a health food shop or your local super market, make sure it’s a minimum of SPF 30+, water resistant, and broad-spectrum. Broad-spectrum will insure you are protected from both UVB (causes burning, & skin cancer) and UVA (causes aging & skin cancer).

SPF 30+ or SPF 50+?

Since the new rating of SPF 50+ was introduced and approved by Australia’s Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) in 2012, sunscreen users have often overestimated its level of protection. This has provided users with a false sense of security over its effectiveness when exposed to the sun. SPF 50+, which provides 98% protection, only provides marginally better protection compared to SPF 30+, which provides 96.7% protection (Cancer Council Australia).

When it comes to sunscreen, what is most important is how you apply it and how often you re-apply. SPF50+ sunscreen still needs to be applied just as liberally as SPF30+, and re-applied every two hours (or after swimming, exercising and towel drying).

How to apply sunscreen effectively.

Whether using SPF30+ or SPF50+, application is key. Apply sunscreen liberally – at least a teaspoon for each limb, front and back of the body, and half a teaspoon for the face, neck and ears. Most people apply less than half this amount, which means they get far less protection than the SPF as stated on the bottle.

Always apply sunscreen 20 minutes before leaving the house. This ensures effective absorption before going out in the sun, and is a good base layer if you are intending to spend long periods of time outside.

Re-apply!! The highest frequency of sun burns occur when you forget to re-apply. So that means don’t forget to re-apply every two hours (or after swimming, exercising and towel drying).

Make sure to look after that beautiful skin of yours by always “slip, slop, slap, seek, and slide!”


For more information, you can jump onto the Cancer Council website @


Written By Andrea
Registered Nurse and Founder of The Skin Manifesto

Andrea is a Registered Nurse that has been achieving solution-focused results for her clients with her 12+ years experience in the Cosmetic industry.
She is also an advanced certified cosmetic injector, certified laser safety officer, and advanced dermal clinician.

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