The necessity to wear a mask is extended. From being needed in public transport, to be in any closed public space and on the street if the safety distance of two meters cannot be respected. If you live in a city with a high population density, the inevitable agglomeration indicates that the mask will be the new addition of the street style.
This new requirement raises innumerable doubts. Until now, the most common was how to combat the negative effects of its use on the skin. With the arrival of good weather, the question is another. Should I wear sunscreen if I wear the mask?
There is a lack of research to respond emphatically if they protect, and to what level. As we don’t know if they filter or not, unless it has been proven and indicated by the mask. As protecting from the sun is not their main purpose, they have no studies. Science, for the moment, has not dedicated itself to investigate this premise.
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On the other hand, there is evidence on the protection of clothing and different fabrics. The work new advances in the summer clothing textiles for protection against ultraviolet radiation from the University of Malaga, published by the American Society for Photobiology, describes the level of shield offered by different garments. Depending on the material of the fabric, the distance between the threads, and the color, the barrier will be greater or less. Linen, for example, would be equivalent to a cream with factor 10, while cotton could reach 40 and the poles to 200. The dark-colored ink adheres to the threads making the spaces between them smaller and, therefore, with less lightning filtering. The study also points out, worsens this leakage as the gaps enlarge, as does the humidity. The reason? The lens effect caused by water in contact with light, allowing it to pass more easily and dispersing it.
The masks do not prevent against sun damage. In the case of surgical, which is made of materials such as cellulose or polypropylene, the brake against sunlight is low, and therefore, its level of protection is very low. The hygienic ones, made of cotton, protect better, but we should not trust ourselves since it is not total and the face is a very sensitive area. Another factor: By creating perspiration when you speak and breathe, they moisten and further reduce your possible UV protection.
We must apply sunscreen. The ideal is to put cream on the entire face, advises the AEDV member. Thus, the appearance of spots is avoided and the risk of skin disease is reduced.
The factor? We recommend choosing a high protection, of SPF 50, these first days of sun exposure. Our skin is much more sensitive due to the lack of sun exposure during the health alert.
By depriving us of the exits during the spring, the skin has not become accustomed to the intensity of the sun and the production of melanin, a natural protection system of the dermis against radiation, has been reduced. Besides, the skin after confinement may be weakened by the drier environment in our homes.
However, masks are giving many dermatological problems. In particular, there has been a rebound in cases of acne. These people question whether the combination with the sunscreen will not enhance it. People with oily skin or problems in the area should use oil-free or non-comedogenic products so that they do not cause occlusion of the pores.
When you return home, you should wash your face with soap and water, as indicated before, hydrate the area well to reverse the damage caused by both the mask and the sun. Hydration is always important, but now that our face is covered even more,, we must bear in mind that our skin stops perspiring in the usual way when we use it. If we add to this the continued friction on the cheekbones, chin and nose, any cleaning, hydration and protection product will act as a protective barrier.