If we need to re-apply sunscreen every three or four hours, how can we apply it to our face without messing up our makeup?

Gender: Female / Age: 30 - 39
Dr. Schultz: This is a very important question that is often asked. Ideally, for maximum protection, sunscreen should be re-applied every three-to-four hours and yes, this would require you to remove and reapply your makeup. However, to be more realistic, if you’re not participating in sports or sitting in the sun and thus not perspiring, then your make-up will most likely be intact and your sunscreen still on your face, and in that case, you probably do not need to re-apply sunscreen. It’s really under the circumstances where you’re doing sports, sitting in the sun, and/or perspiring that the re-application of sunscreen every two-to-four hours is so very important.
Karen on March 17, 2010 at 1:26am

Would using a powder with sunscreen be enough instead of reapplying a cream?

Neal Schultz, M.D. on March 17, 2010 at 5:58pm

@Karen: It will be helpful but won't give you the effect of the full SPF because it's not the first product on your skin. For more information on understanding why you need to apply your sunscreen first, please see Why You Should Apply Your Sunscreen First.

alania on May 11, 2010 at 5:06am

do you think that we should use sunscreen even at home as it is said that UVA rays can penetrate through the window?

Neal Schultz, M.D. on June 1, 2010 at 12:03am

@Alania: You need UVA protection indoors if you are directly exposed to sunlight. If the sun's rays are not actually hitting your skin, but just bouncing around the room, then sun protection is not necessary. Windows do however filter out UV B (or the burning) rays of the sun.