SPF 100 has arrived: Here's everything you need to know

Posted by
Jacqueline Kilikita

A scientific study showed that SPF 100 is 11 times more effective at preventing sunburn than SPF 50…

By now, applying SPF should be a step that is firmly ingrained in your morning skincare routine alongside brushing your teeth and taking a shower. 

And now the weather is (sort of) getting better, and the idea of a holiday somewhere scorching is imminent, you’re probably on the hunt for sunscreen with bolstered protection. 

Before now, the highest SPF available to buy was 50. But now could be the time to shelve it, because SPF 100 is officially a thing, and there is some very important scientific evidence to suggest that we should all be wearing it.

The study

In a recent study in the Journal of The American Academy of Dermatology, 199 men and women at a sunny ski resort in Vail, Colorado were given two tubes of SPF - one contained SPF 50 and the other, SPF 100. Participants didn’t know which one was which, as one tube was marked ‘left’ and the other marked ‘right’ - the labels indicated which side of the face they were required to apply the SPF to.

After application, participants were left to go about their business around the resort for the day.

The results

The following day, a dermatologist evaluated erythema - reddening of the skin, AKA sunburn - and concluded that out of 199 people, 110 were more sunburned on the side of their face where they had applied the SPF 50, compared to just 10 people on the side they’d applied SPF 100 to. In short, the study showed that SPF 100 is 11 times more effective at preventing sunburn than SPF 50 - and that’s impressive to say the least.

Where can I buy it?

According to Racked, the SPF 100 in question is a Neutrogena product, most likely the Ultra Sheer SPF 100 Dry-Touch Lotion, which you can now buy in the UK at Amazon.

How do I apply SPF 100?

According to Dr Anjali Mahto, consultant dermatologist at Skin 55, the sun is the biggest environmental culprit in accelerated skin ageing (cue wrinkles and pigmentation) which is why it really pays to apply a daily broad spectrum SPF to sun-exposed areas such as the face, neck and hands.

If you aren’t sure when to slot SPF into your skincare routine, Dr Mahto suggest that it should be applied after serum and moisturiser in the morning. Make sure enough time is given for each layer of products to dry and absorb into the skin before applying the next layer. If you’re prone to acne, make sure your SPF is oil-free and non-comedogenic, so that it won’t clog your pores.

Main Image: Unsplash