Let’s face it: Part of becoming an adult is realizing just how dumb you were when you were younger. What seems unimportant at 18 or 20 can suddenly seem very important at 30. Take saving money, for example, or staying hydrated.

There’s also the matter of using sunscreen. Though most of us know just  for how important SPF is for preventing skin damage and, more importantly, skin cancer, it’s tempting to skip sunscreen altogether when you’re feeling young and unstoppable. It also can be easy to forget another important detail about wearing SPF: Reapplication.

When to Reapply

When it comes to sunscreen, the most important thing to know is that you need to put it on before you go outside. Period. What’s more, you have to apply face and body sunscreen 15 to 30 minutes before you go outside, allowing it to absorb into your skin.

For face sunscreen, this means letting your base layer of SPF absorb into the skin before you apply foundation or other products. Waiting 3 to 5 minutes after facial SPF application, then applying the foundation in “smooth, downward motions” with “no rubbing back and forth.” If that foundation or tinted moisturizer also contains SPF, even better.

How to Reapply Over Makeup

Say you’re going to be spending all day outside in the sun. What then? It’s important to reapply sunscreen in addition to wearing protective gear like hats and long sleeves. What’s also important is finding a type of sunscreen that you’re actually going to want to use again and again.

“Powder can work well, but typically not as well as creams or gels as your initial sunscreen. I typically recommend a lotion, cream or gel as your initial sunscreen and powder for reapplication,” said board-certified dermatologist Morgana Colombo. “Sunscreen efficacy relates to SPF and proper quantity being applied. Applying enough powder so that it performs as well as a cream or gel is difficult. Powders also come off easier when a person sweats or during COVID times if the person wears a mask.”

To hear all about the best summer skincare products keep in touch with Skintap through our social media, or get connected with one of our Board Certified Dermatologists!