Why you need SPF indoors as well as outdoors this summer
Everyone knows that it’s wise to wear suncream when you’re out and about outside, but did you know that it’s just as important to wear it indoors too? As a general rule of thumb, wearing a minimum of SPF15 (ideally 30) every single day is the best course of action to protect skin from the sun’s harmful UV rays. Taking care of your skin is one of the best ways to make sure you get the full benefits of our skincare treatments here at AP Skincare, and sunlight remains one of its most consistent daily threats – especially in the heat of summer. That’s just one key reason why it’s so imperative to protect your skin both indoors and outdoors.
Why is it best to wear SPF every day?
It’s best to wear SPF every single day to protect your skin from the adverse effects of prolonged exposure to UV rays. UV rays inflict much more damage than just premature ageing; they’re linked to a host of nasty skin conditions that no one wants to experience – all of which you’re significantly more likely to avoid by simply using daily SPF.
Now, let’s talk UV rays. UV rays are classified by wavelength:
- UVA – longest and most harmful wavelength
- UVB – medium wavelength (but still very harmful)
Both UVA and UVB rays cause significant damage to your skin in the long-term, so it’s important to equip your skin with as much protection as you can. To protect your skin from harmful UVA and UVB rays, work an SPF into your daily skincare routine. Try to re-apply at least once throughout the day if you can, whether you’re inside or outside.
It’s also worth us taking the time quickly to address a common misconception – namely that if the weather is poor, there’s no risk of UV damage. Unfortunately, this simply isn’t true. Even on an overcast day, up to 80% of UVA rays can penetrate through clouds and even windows, which is more than enough to cause some damage. That’s why it’s important to wear your SPF, even if the weather isn’t great and you’re primarily indoors. This is especially crucial if you sit near a window or drive your car frequently, as the sun can damage your skin through the glass.
What damage can UV rays do to my skin through a window?
Since we’ve established that UV rays can penetrate through windows, what harm can they actually do? Well, despite the fact that you won’t be able to feel the UVA rays burning or irritating your skin through the window, they can still cause damage over time by triggering free radical activity.
If you’ve not heard of free radicals before, they are highly reactive and unstable molecules made by the body as a byproduct of your metabolism. They only have a short lifespan, but during that time they can cause a surprising amount of damage to your DNA. If activated, free radicals can cause deep cellular damage within your skin that you might not see the effects of until later in life. This cellular damage can manifest in the following ways:
- Age spots
- Skin photosensitivity
- Skin cancer
Keeping on top of your skincare (SPF application) is the best defence against these issues in terms of UV related problems. To help further, if you work from home or regularly sit by a window, try moving your space to somewhere with slightly less sun exposure. Remember, it’s not just your face, neck and hands at risk, any part of your skin that is exposed also needs to be protected.
What other kinds of light can damage skin indoors?
As much as technology like phones, computers and TVs are great, the blue light from them can also have an impact on our skin. That’s something a lot of people underestimate, too. The blue light emitted from our devices, also known as high-energy visible light (HEV), can lead to premature ageing, skin discolouration, inflammation and photo-ageing over time.
Blue light is all around us. The biggest source of blue light is the sun, but like we said earlier, many of the world’s favourite handheld and desktop devices emit blue light too. Sure, they might be in much smaller doses than the sun, but if you’re constantly checking your phone and working on computers, then you’re increasing the exposure.
Uswitch contacted a screen time report in 2022 which found that as a nation, almost half of UK adults spent three to four hours a day watching TV, and up to six hours on social media. Those hours of blue light emission tally up over the course of a year, so it’s best to stay protected with an SPF.
All that being said, we’re not saying that you shouldn’t spend time in the sun or around your favourite devices! Everyone loves to relax on the beach or in the garden and scroll through their phone, it’s just best practice to stay as safe and healthy as possible when doing so. If you’re applying your SPF daily, even when you’re indoors, then you’re good to go.
That’s not the only way you can give your skin the love it deserves though. Here at AP Skincare we can analyse the health of your skin in detail, and provide skincare treatments and recommend at-home products to boost your complexion – we also offer anti-wrinkle injections, skin pigmentation treatments, non-surgical facelifts, acne treatments and more!
Our treatments are clinician-led, meaning we don’t rely solely on over-the-counter solutions, and we use medical-grade ingredients which can only be prescribed by trained clinicians like us. If you’d like to know more or book an appointment, call our friendly team on 01254 29 000, or pop into our skincare clinic in Blackburn!