Use sunscreen

Always use a broad-spectrum, water resistant, sunscreen of at least SPF30.

Apply

Apply your sunscreen 20 minutes before going outside and again when you’ve been outside for 10 to 20 minutes.

Use a ‘two coat’ approach.

Apply your sunscreen 20 minutes before going outside and again when you’ve been outside for 10 to 20 minutes.

Applying two ‘coats’ of sunscreen:

  • helps cover up areas you may have missed on your first application
  • gives you a thicker, more protective, layer of sunscreen.

Use lots of ‘broad-spectrum’ sunscreen

If you’re an average-sized adult, as a guide, you should apply about half a teaspoon of sunscreen to your face, ears and neck and one teaspoon to each leg, arm, the front of your body, and the back of your body.

That’s about seven teaspoons of sunscreen for one full body application.

Read more on sunscreens from Consumer NZ.

UV radiation from the sun has UVA and UVB rays that reach the earth. Both types can cause damage to your skin and eyes.

Choose a broad-spectrum sunscreen of at least SPF30. Broad-spectrum sunscreen reduces the intensity of both UVA and UVB rays. No sunscreen provides 100% protection from UV radiation.

Learn more about UV radiation.

Babies

Babies' skin is very fragile so try to keep them out of direct sunlight particularly between 10am and 4pm from September to April.

For babies that are moving, try to cover up as much skin as possible and keep them in the shade.

We recommend you test any sunscreen on a small patch of skin before you start using it regularly to check that it doesn't irritate your skin.

Reapply

Reapply your sunscreen every two hours, as well as after swimming or sweating.

Reapply your sunscreen every two hours, as well as after swimming or sweating.

Even if your sunscreen says it’s water resistant and will give you four hours of protection, reapply every two hours.

Check the use-by date

Check your sunscreen's label to confirm it isn’t past its use-by date (expired).

Store properly

Store your sunscreen according to the label's instructions.

As a guide, do not store your sunscreen in direct sunlight ie, not on a window ledge, or where it can warm up quickly ie, not in a glove compartment in your car.

Watch the time

Sunscreen helps reduce exposure to UV radiation, but that’s all. It should not be used to increase the amount of time you can spend in the sun.

If you’re going to be outside whenever the UV index is 3 or above, use all the SunSmart steps to protect yourself – Slip, Slop, Slap and Wrap.

Check the Sun Protection Alert

The Sun Protection Alert gives you the time each day when you need to protect your skin and eyes.

Find out today’s Sun Protection Alert for your location

Slop it on

The following video shows you how to use sunscreen correctly.

Source: Cancer Council Victoria.

Find out more about how to choose and use sunscreen.