These aren't the rules your grandma used to follow.

The New Sunscreen Rules You Need to Know

By now you know to apply SPF to the backs of your hands and to cover up your part. But new sunscreen findings and formulas are flipping sun protection on its wide brimmed, hat-wearing head. We asked Holly Thaggard, founder of suncare brand Supergoop!, to break down the new rules for staying protected this summer:

Pick the Appropriate Formula

Chemical sunscreens like Supergoop!’s Everyday SPF 30 with Cellular Response Technology filter and scatter the sun’s rays, absorbing into skin, so they'll stay put through sweat and swim sessions. Physical formulas like the Skin Soothing Mineral Sunscreen are made with natural minerals which are ground down into fine powders that sit on the surface of skin and deflect rays, making them ideal for layering over everyday makeup.

Apply (and Reapply) Accordingly

Physical sunscreens start blocking UV rays immediately after you apply, and tend to last for longer because they deflect the sun's rays, whereas it takes your skin 15-20 minutes to absorb chemical formulas. There’s no hard rule for when you should reapply, since sweating, toweling off, and even the wind can impair your SPF’s defensive powers, but Thaggard advises aiming for additional coverage every two hours.

Embrace Sunscreen Cocktailing

Use a nourishing oil like Supergoop!’s Sun Defying Sunscreen Oil with Meadowfoam SPF 50 on your body for moisturized skin with high spectrum protection. For your face, opt for a UV protection-infused serum like the Anti-Aging City Sunscreen Serum SPF 30 that’s lighter and won’t lead to breakouts. And for delicate areas, use targeted formulas like Supergoop's hand cream AND EYE CREAM.

Don’t Rely on SPF-Infused Makeup

Sunscreen in makeup like your BB Cream breaks down faster than, so you need to supplement it with a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or above. If you aren’t hitting the sand, Supergoop!’s Daily Correct CC Cream SPF 35+ provides high-quality daytime coverage in a primer-foundation hybrid that smooths lines and skin tones while protecting against UVA, UVB, and infrared-A rays.

Numbers Aren't Everything

What's the difference between SPF 65, 75, and 100? Not much. They don’t last any longer, and since SPF 50 filters out 98% of the sun’s harmful rays, any additional protection doesn't make a big difference. One thing you Thaggard says you can do to avoid a burn is apply two layers of sunscreen (because most people don’t apply as generously as they should).

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