How do sunscreen creams work?

Hopefully, you already know that it’s important to wear sunscreen when you go in the sun, but do you know what SPF actually is and what it does? Knowledge is power. If you understand what sunscreen does, hopefully this will positively influence the decisions you make before exposing your skin to potential damage.

SPF, or sun protection factor, protects your skin from ultraviolet radiation, also known as UV rays. We prefer to think of it as skin protection factor as you apply it all year round, not just when the sun is out. Sunscreen can protect your skin in two different ways, depending on the type of cream you use – chemical or physical.

Chemical sunscreens, like those available in chemists and supermarkets, contain chemicals like avobenzone or oxybenzone that absorb UV rays limiting the amount of radiation penetrating the skin. Chemical sunscreens tend to penetrate the skin below the surface of the epidermis which is why it is often less well tolerated in sensitive skins.

Physical sunscreens block or deflect UVA and UVB radiation. This physical sunscreen shield is created by minerals such as zinc oxide or titanium dioxide, that reflect UV rays away from your skin. Physical sunscreens have improved enormously over the last few years from thick, white sunblock to light, silky feel creams.

The SPF that is displayed on sunscreen packaging refers to how well it will protect your skin from UVB radiation, which causes sunburn and several types of skin cancer. Another type of radiation, called UVA radiation, penetrates the skin much deeper, causing premature wrinkling, age spots, and can heighten your risk of some skin cancers. Sunscreens labelled broad-spectrum, block against both UVA and UVB – these provide the best coverage.

There’s a lot of discussion around what strength of SPF is needed to protect your skin. SPF 15 may prevent up to 93 percent of UVB rays, while SPF 50 has a protection rate of around 98 percent. While the differences in protection aren’t grossly significant, if you have fair skin or burn easily it’s advisable to use a higher SPF.

No matter what SPF you choose, try to avoid excessive exposure between 10am and 3pm. While many believe sun tans look great, the damage you do to your skin when lying in the sun can have serious implications and will certainly make your skin age faster.

If you have any questions about sun protection and how to care for your skin, feel free to book a free consultation with our nurse specialist to discuss a tailored approach that will best work for you and your skin!

JP Cambridge

Fantastic treatment, knowledge, professional, compassionate. Delighted with treatment and choice of treatment provider.

JP -
Cambridge -

SO Bury St Edmunds

Everything was explained very clearly prior to starting treatment and any concerns were addressed. I am very pleased I made the decision to come to Dermaplicity.

SO -
Bury St Edmunds -

VM Exning

Very good service and very friendly people.

VM -
Exning -

CM Feltwell

I have recommended Dermaplicity to all of my family and friends because of the wonderful treatment I receive from Catriona. Her knowledge and technique are phenomenal.

CM -
Feltwell -

GK Haverhill

Your service is perfect - always treated with confidence and understanding. Would recommend most definitely. The treatment gives me such confidence! Thank you.

GK -
Haverhill -

LH Bury St Edmunds

Lovely people! Wouldn't change a thing.

LH -
Bury St Edmunds -

JH Bury St Edmunds

Very pleased with the quality of the service. Have already recommended to friends and colleagues.

JH -
Bury St Edmunds -

JH Newmarket

I advise all my friends and anyone who asks about my beautiful skin to come to Dermaplicity. The results I have seen speaks for itself. Thank you!

JH -
Newmarket -

LF Ely

I started coming for one area of treatment but was so impressed and comfortable with the service, I stayed on to have more. It was a big decision for me but I feel I am always put first and given accurate information, sound advice and no pressure.

LF -
Ely -

JD Suffolk

Very pleased with my results! I am going to miss you guys when I have to move.

JD -
Suffolk -

AC Haverhill

Everyone was very professional and helpful. I felt comfortable with every treatment and am very satisfied. Thanks very much.

AC -
Haverhill -

ER Newmarket

The fact that you are a nurse is a very good bonus. I feel privileged to have found you.

ER -
Newmarket -

JL Haverhill

Very welcoming and friendly environment.

JL -
Haverhill -

MA Newmarket

Catriona has always been very professional and informative. I appreciate her honesty in only trying to sell products and treatments that she believes are right for me. Thank you.

MA -
Newmarket -

ER Newmarket

My results are much better than they have been with any other treatment.

ER -
Newmarket -

TB Newmarket

I have always felt confident in the treatment I receive at Dermaplicity. Catriona is always able to answer any questions I have and I would have no hesitation in recommending her services.

TB -
Newmarket -

LB Suffolk

Fantastic information and treatments each time. More than happy. Very friendly customer service throughout.

LB -
Suffolk -

SM Ipswich

Excellent. I have been really pleased with the result and service!

SM -
Ipswich -

DK Thetford

This has been an excellent experience. Catriona is so wonderful and knowledgeable - perfect combination!

DK -
Thetford -

KF Cambridge

Service is perfect, always happy.

KF -
Cambridge -

SS Bury St Edmunds

After many years plucking and bleaching I was so pleased to find Dermaplicity. I have achieved amazing results and now have my confidence back.

SS -
Bury St Edmunds -

VG Bury St Edmunds

Although Dermaplicity was recommended by a friend and I did not choose them because they offered treatments with a nurse, it greatly put my mind at ease.

VG -
Bury St Edmunds -

DW Cambridge

Everything happened as explained and with minimal discomfort. I would have no hesitation in recommending Dermaplicity to anyone.

DW -
Cambridge -

DB Cambridge

Very pleased with the treatment I receive, the welcome given and the professionalism of Dermaplicity.

DB -
Cambridge -

AS Newmarket

Really appreciate the weekend and evening availability so I can still work my normal hours!

AS -
Newmarket -

TS Exning

Very pleasant team, always a joy to see. Catriona has been very helpful.

TS -
Exning -

EH Norfolk

Very happy with Dermaplicity. Staff are lovely, understanding and kind. Great value. Great results. Thank you!

EH -
Norfolk -

EL Newmarket

Keep up the good work!

EL -
Newmarket -

TP Cambridge

I've always felt relaxed and comfortable during my treatments and able to ask any questions I might have. Thank you very much!

TP -
Cambridge -

CV Newmarket

Very happy with treatment and results.

CV -
Newmarket -

GB Newmarket

The whole experience with Dermaplicity has been a very pleasurable one, with good results and no stress. I couldn't recommend them more highly.

GB -
Newmarket -

CT Newmarket

Discovering Dermaplicity has been one of the best things I have done to combat my medical problem.

CT -
Newmarket -

CT Newmarket

Dermaplicity staff are friendly and welcoming which always makes you actually want to continue treatments and recommend the clinic to co-workers and friends.

CT -
Newmarket -

KD Cambridge

Very friendly and made to feel very comfortable.

KD -
Cambridge -

KM Suffolk

I am very appreciative of the knowledge, expertise and professionalism you offer.

KM -
Suffolk -

LP Bury St Edmunds

Visiting someone who clearly enjoys their work is very reassuring and made for a pleasant experience.

LP -
Bury St Edmunds -

HP Suffolk

Fantastic treatment, service and results. The team understood and showed empathy as well as offering a solution in a non pressured and knowledgeable way.

HP -
Suffolk -

HP Suffolk

I am indebted to Dermaplicity for giving me my confidence and general sense of wellness back. Thank you!

HP -
Suffolk -

AD Cambridgeshire

No negatives - totally thrilled. Would 100% recommend.

AD -
Cambridgeshire -

NR Newmarket

I have felt more than comfortable on every visit here. I could not have asked for better service from both my nurse and the receptionist.

NR -
Newmarket -

AF Newmarket

Fantastic service always with a smile.

AF -
Newmarket -

LB Norfolk

Thank you for making me feel very special always.

LB -
Norfolk -

AT Bury St Edmunds

Extremely pleasant and professional service.

AT -
Bury St Edmunds -

RA Newmarket

Great knowledge of skin needs, always encouraging and professional.

RA -
Newmarket -

KC Cambridge

Laser hair removal has been life-changing and the process from consultation onwards handled sensitively and with genuine concern for achieving long-term results.

KC -
Cambridge -

HP Bury St Edmunds

I have felt in very safe hands. Thank you!

HP -
Bury St Edmunds -

CH Newmarket

Lovely team and feel confident in the treatments provided.

CH -
Newmarket -

HD Newmarket

Honest advice and very pleased with the results so far. Always happy with the service given.

HD -
Newmarket -

EP Newmarket

I've been very unhappy with my skin because it was in very bad condition. Now I am in good mood and I see how improved my skin is and I am happy because I met very nice people at Dermaplicity.

EP -
Newmarket -

TB Ely

I'm not sure how you could improve your service. I am extremely happy with information and treatments.

TB -
Ely -

EM Bury St Edmunds

I don't think you could improve the service you provide, I only wish I had discovered Dermaplicity sooner!

EM -
Bury St Edmunds -

PW Cambridge

Good service - feel in safe hands.

PW -
Cambridge -

OT Newmarket

Amazing service!! Very happy with my treatments and will continue to tell my friends.

OT -
Newmarket -

NT Newmarket

Love Dermaplicity!! All treatments have made such a difference to my life.

NT -
Newmarket -

SS Bury St Edmunds

Wished I'd done it earlier!

SS -
Bury St Edmunds -

BS Newmarket

Very happy with my Dermaplicity experience. Fantastic results and regularly recommend to friends and family.

BS -
Newmarket -

CS Cambridge

I wouldn't go or recommend anywhere else! Just a shame you don't do tattoo removal as well.

CS -
Cambridge -

CR Mildenhall

Extremely helpful and really kind people. I wouldn't go anywhere else.

CR -
Mildenhall -