Skincare Junkie: Why You Need To Be Wearing SPF All Year Round

Because sun protection isn't a summer fling.

After three months of travelling America, drinking too many cans and discovering myself, I’ve returned from the sunny west coast and it’s safe to say I’ve taken home a little bit of knowledge regarding the importance of SPF’s. So grab a cuppa, ladies, the Skincare Junkie is here to preach to you about sun protection all year round.

Heading to San Diego (did I mention I was in America? #wanderlust), I was well aware that wearing an SPF under my makeup while frolicking about in the Californian sun was a must. I’m pale af and the SPF 15 in my foundation just wasn’t going to cut it.

Admittedly, I was a bit of a slacker for wearing an SPF every day while at home in the not-so-sunny Northside of Dublin. ‘Sure why would you need it?’ is what you’re asking me. C’mere and I tell ya.

Why Do I Need An SPF?

If we’re going to get technical about it, SPF stands for sun protection factor, which essentially means how much protection against the sun a product will offer. The factor number refers to the amount of time you can spend in the sun before your skin starts to get damaged. An simple example of this is: if your skin would usually start to get toasty after about ten minutes in the sun, wearing an SPF 20 will increase that time by 20, so you wouldn’t have to reapply for another 200 minutes. Simples.

If you’re looking out of your office window right now on this overcast Wednesday morning, I know you’re thinking that the last thing you’ll need is an SPF, but approximately 80 per cent of UV rays still penetrate through clouds, so you don’t have to be lying on the beach in Torremolinos to get a red nose.

SPF is also recognised as the best and most effective anti-ager when it comes to preventing premature wrinkles, and you know how I feel about using anti-ageing products while you’re still young.

If youthful skin isn’t enough to get you on the SPF bandwagon, skin cancer is the most common form of cancer diagnosed in Ireland with 159 deaths annually on average from the disease, according to the most recent figures from 2014 from the Irish Cancer Society. This just goes to show that, evening on our most miserable of days, an SPF should be an essential in your skincare routine.

What Product Do I Need?

One of the main reasons I used to be lazy when it came to an SPF in my morning routine was the childhood memories that lead me to believe that suncream is this thick, sticky and greasy mess hated among everyone, and god only knows the effect that would have on my anything-but-cheap foundation. However, suncream has come a long way since package holidays in the early 2000’s, and I discovered (or was gifted, @vickinotaro), the perfect moisturising SPF that saved my skin throughout the summer and has made it’s way into my autumn skincare routine.

Image Skincare’s Prevention Daily Hydrating Moisturiser is a 2-in-1 moisturiser and SPF 30. Unlike most traditional suncreams, it’s super sheer and lightweight and doesn’t leave your skin feeling oily and sticky, meaning it’s perfect for under your foundation. According to Image Skincare, this product provides broad-spectrum UVA/UVB protection to help prevent sunburn, decreases the risk of skin cancer and early skin ageing caused by the sun, hydrates the skin and offers antioxidant protection against free radicals.

You can pick up a 95ml bottle of my fave SPF straight from Image’s website for €45. Not a lot to spend to keep away those wrinkles and protect yourself against skin cancer, don’t you think?