SunClub Mineral Sunscreen being Applied

6 Myths About Sunscreen

Summer is in full swing! The days are longer and you’re able to spend more time outdoors. Whether you’re paddleboarding, playing a game of beach volleyball or just lounging by the pool, you’ve probably thought about applying your SPF. Or maybe you think you don’t need it at all. There’s a lot of misinformation surrounding sunscreen, but we’re here to help get to the bottom of some common myths. 

 Myth #1: Sunscreen causes cancer

False. You may be concerned about some of the ingredients listed on your sunscreen bottles, but there is no medical evidence that shows sunscreen causes cancer. In fact, sunscreen has been proven to protect you from harmful UV exposure that causes 80-90% of skin cancers. If you’re still concerned, opt for a sunblock, like SunClub’s mineral formula, that contains zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. Sunblock’s sit on your skin's surface to block UV rays, but does not get absorbed into the skin. 

Myth #2: Higher SPF gives you better protection AND you don’t need to reapply as often

False. You may think SPF 100 have more than 3x the sun protection of SPF 30. In reality, SPF 30 blocks 97% of the sun’s rays. Higher SPF’s will only block 1-2% more. No sunscreen can block 100%. And no matter the SPF, sunscreen only lasts for about 2 hours. For the best protection, make sure your SPF is at least 30 and reapply every 2 hours. 

Myth #3: You can’t get burnt if it’s cloudy or cold

False. Even when it’s cloudy or cold, you should apply your sunscreen as you would on a warm, sunny day. On a cloudy day, up to 90% of the sun’s rays can still penetrate into your skin. Same when it’s cold out; UV rays from the sun are just as intense even if it doesn’t feel as warm. Especially if you are around sand, water or snow, the sun will reflect back on you, exposing you twice, so make sure you apply your SPF every 2 hours while hiking, skiing or on an overcast day. 

Myth #4: Makeup with SPF provides all the protection you need

False. If your makeup has SPF 30+ you will get some sun protection, but the likelihood is you’re not applying enough to give you full coverage. You’re also likely missing key areas like your neck and ears. Just like any other sunscreen product, makeup with SPF needs to be reapplied at least every 2 hours to be effective. 

Myth #5: You don’t need sunscreen if you have dark colored skin

False. Darker skin tones have more melanin making it more difficult to see sun damage on darker skin. You may not burn as easily, but you are still susceptible to sun damage and skin cancer. You should wear sunscreen regardless of age, gender or race. 

Myth #6: All sunscreens are created equal

False. There are hundreds of sunscreens on the market. For optimal protection, look for a sunscreen that is labeled “Broad Spectrum” to protect from both UVA and UVB rays. As noted above, make sure your sunscreen is at least SPF 30 and be wary of harsh chemicals like Oxybenzone and Avobenzone to name just a few. Your sunscreen should be water resistant. Most importantly, invest in sunscreen that contains zinc oxide and titanium dioxide: the only two active ingredients recognized by the FDA as being “generally regarded as safe and effective.”  

If you have questions about how to protect your skin from the sun, check out ClubSunscreen.com and ask your doctor for more information. 

References: 

Kellie Bramlet Blackburn. “6 sunscreen myths debunked.” MDAnderson Cancer Center. May 2018. <https://www.mdanderson.org/publications/focused-on-health/6-sunscreen-myths-debunked.h26-1592202.html>


Healthline. “Does sunscreen cause cancer?” March, 19, 2021. <https://www.healthline.com/health/skin-cancer/does-sunscreen-cause-cancer#sunscreen-and-cancer>


Cancer Treatment Centers of America. “Busting myths: 9 misconceptions about sunscreen and sun safety” June 7, 2021. <https://www.cancercenter.com/community/blog/2021/06/busting-myths-sun-safety>


Beth Isreal Lahey Health Winchester Hospital. “True or False: Dark-skinned People DOn’t Need Sunscreen.” Accessed May 16, 2022. <https://www.winchesterhospital.org/health-library/article?id=157004>


UCF Health. “Are All Sunscreens The Same?” Accessed May 16, 2022. <https://ucfhealth.com/health-tips/are-all-sunscreens-the-same/>
Back to blog