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The days of summer have ended, and the tradeoff brings changing leaves, cooler temperatures and fewer hours of daylight. It’s easy to drop the sun protection once the calendar turns, but UV radiation levels can still be concerning in the fall months. Don’t believe us? Let’s explore more.
Just like each day’s weather impacts the kind of clothes you wear, it also impacts your exposure to UV rays. These ultraviolent levels are actually at their highest under clear skies, with 90% of UV rays able to pass through minimal cloud cover. Your physical location also makes a difference when it comes to the specifics of exposure. Regions along the equator have the greatest levels of UV radiation because they’re in direct (or near-direct) sunlight all year long as the earth moves around the sun, so the closer you live to the equator, the more risk you face of being affected. Conversely, the closer you live to the poles, the less UV radiation exposure you’ll get.
So how do you know exactly how much UV exposure there is on a given day? You reference the UV Index, a measure that provides the net level of UV radiation in a given area while accounting for factors like elevation and cloudiness. This index is actually used by the Environmental Protection Agency and the National Weather Service to help individuals properly prepare for the day.
You can take a look at your UV index forecast on the map here — plus learn how it’s calculated, how to read the scale and steps you can take based on the index. If you’re someone who’d appreciate access from your phone, you can download the SunWise app.
When it comes to the practicality of applying sunscreen on a daily basis, find a rhythm that works for you. If you wear makeup regularly, choose products that are compatible with one another. If you use oil-based makeup, for example, pair it with oil-based sunscreen so your skin stays smooth and doesn’t experience pilling. Also try putting your sunscreen on first so it’s closest to your skin for maximum protection. Our Sun Protector SPF 30 is a mineral-based sunscreen made with zinc oxide, which is less likely to irritate skin while providing a physical barrier to the sun’s harmful rays.
Applying sunscreen shouldn’t be a seasonal practice but an everyday one. UVA light is a cancer-causing wavelength that’s present throughout the year (and at all times of day), so it’s really important to protect your skin cells from DNA damage. Skipping a quick sunscreen application just isn’t worth the risk.