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Sunscreen May Make Your Skin Look Darker

Updated: Mar 9, 2023

Sunscreen is an essential part of any skincare routine. It helps to protect our skin from harmful UV rays, which can cause sunburn, premature aging, and even skin cancer. However, some people may notice that their skin shade becomes darker after applying sunscreen. In this blog, we will explore the reasons behind this phenomenon and offer some tips on how to prevent it.





Reasons Why Skin Shade Becomes Darker After Applying Sunscreen:


Chemical Sunscreen: Chemical sunscreen contains ingredients that absorb UV rays and convert them into heat. This heat can cause inflammation in the skin, leading to the production of melanin, which gives the skin a darker shade.


Mineral Sunscreen: Mineral sunscreen contains ingredients such as titanium dioxide and zinc oxide, which create a physical barrier on the skin to block UV rays. However, these ingredients can leave a white cast on the skin, which can make it look darker.


Sun Exposure: Even if you apply sunscreen, prolonged sun exposure can still cause the skin to darken. UV rays can penetrate through clothing and windows, so it's important to reapply sunscreen every two hours and wear protective clothing when outdoors.



Tips to Prevent Skin Shade from Becoming Darker After Applying Sunscreen:


Use a Physical Sunscreen: If you notice that your skin shade becomes darker after applying sunscreen, switch to a physical sunscreen that contains titanium dioxide and/or zinc oxide. These ingredients create a physical barrier on the skin that blocks UV rays without causing inflammation.


Choose the Right Sunscreen: Choose a sunscreen that is specifically designed for your skin type. If you have oily skin, opt for a non-comedogenic formula that won't clog pores. If you have dry skin, choose a moisturizing formula that will hydrate your skin.


Apply Sunscreen Properly: Apply sunscreen evenly on your skin and don't forget to apply it to your ears, neck, and other exposed areas. Make sure to apply enough sunscreen to cover your skin properly, as using too little can reduce its effectiveness.


Reapply Sunscreen Often: Reapply sunscreen every two hours or immediately after swimming or sweating. This will ensure that your skin stays protected from UV rays and prevent it from darkening.


In conclusion, the skin may become darker after applying sunscreen due to the ingredients used, prolonged sun exposure, or using too little sunscreen. By using a physical sunscreen, choosing the right formula, applying it properly, and reapplying it often, you can prevent your skin shade from becoming darker and enjoy the benefits of sun protection without any negative effects.


It's important to choose a sunscreen that is suitable for your skin type to ensure that it provides effective protection without causing any negative effects. Always remember to reapply sunscreen every two hours or immediately after swimming or sweating to ensure that your skin stays protected from harmful UV rays.


Here are some sunscreen product recommendations available in India for different skin types:


For Oily Skin:

Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch Sunblock SPF 50+ PA+++: This oil-free sunscreen is lightweight, non-greasy, and has a matte finish that is perfect for oily skin. It offers broad-spectrum protection and is water-resistant.


La Roche-Posay Anthelios XL Dry Touch Gel-Cream SPF 50+: This sunscreen is specially designed for oily and acne-prone skin. It has a non-greasy, dry-touch finish and provides high UVA and UVB protection.


For Dry Skin:

Bioderma Photoderm Max Cream SPF 50+: This sunscreen has a nourishing cream formula that is perfect for dry skin. It provides broad-spectrum protection and contains moisturizing ingredients to hydrate the skin.


Lotus Herbals Safe Sun UV Screen Matte Gel SPF 50: This sunscreen has a gel formula that is light, non-greasy, and easy to absorb. It contains a blend of herbal extracts that provide nourishment to the skin and prevent dryness.


For Sensitive Skin:

Avene Very High Protection Emulsion SPF 50+: This sunscreen is specially formulated for sensitive skin. It is hypoallergenic, fragrance-free, and provides high UVA and UVB protection without causing any irritation.


Cetaphil Daylong Light Gel SPF 50+: This sunscreen is gentle and non-irritating, making it suitable for sensitive skin. It has a light gel formula that is easy to apply and absorbs quickly.


For Combination Skin:

Mamaearth Ultra Light Indian Sunscreen SPF 50 PA+++: This sunscreen is perfect for combination skin. It has a non-greasy formula that is easy to blend and provides broad-spectrum protection.


Kaya Youth Protect Sunscreen SPF 50: This sunscreen has a light, non-greasy formula that is suitable for combination skin. It provides broad-spectrum protection and is enriched with antioxidants to protect the skin from environmental damage.

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