When it comes to getting sunburnt we all have our “ways” of avoiding it, especially during the summer. Some think if you stay in the shade, or if you cover up your skin you won’t get sunburnt.

If you are someone who thinks that you’re protected from the sun by doing any other method than applying sunscreen correctly then you’re in for a not so pleasant surprise. Here are 7 times you might think you’re protected from the sun while actually, you are not.


When You’re Covered Up

Believe it or not, you’re not protected from the sun even if you’re fully clothed from head to toe. The suns rays are mainly dividedd into UVB and UVA. UVA rays can penetrate your clothes and your epidermis (the first layer of your skin) to cause harmful damage to your cells, possibly causing skin cancer. That’s why we’ve said it before and we’ll say it again. You have to make sure your sunscreen blocks both UVB and UVA.


When You’re Indoors

The thing about sunlight is that even though it can’t penetrate concrete walls, it can bounce off them. That means you could be sitting in the office thinking that you’re protected from the harsh sun while actually, the desk you’re sitting on is reflecting those sun rays, hitting your face. Granted its effect isn’t strong enough for you to get a tan or a sunburn. However, day in and day out if you keep your skin unprotected from the sun while you’re indoors you’re risking skin damage caused by UVA.

When Standing in the Shade

Ever heard someone say they got sunburnt while swearing that they were in the shade all day and never really believed them? Well, you should have because it is true. You can very well get sunburnt while staying in the shade. Just because you’re under an umbrella or not in direct sun exposure it doesn’t mean you’re not getting any exposure at all. You are actually getting quite a lot, and UVB rays can find you. How? They can get reflected off the sand, the concrete floor or anything else near you. So, no matter how much shade you’re in, you still need sunscreen.


When in the Car

Just like how sunrays like UVA can penetrate your clothes they can also very much go through your windows, and your car has at least 6 of those! So, you’re pretty much fully exposed while in the car, even if the sun isn’t hitting your skin directly. It can still bounce off the dashboard and hit your face and any exposed skin.


When in Winter

You probably didn’t know this but you can actually get sunburnt in winter, especially if you’re in the snow. That’s because the snow almost acts like a magnifying glass or mirror, reflecting the sunlight to hit your face causing sunburn and skin damage. Even if you live somewhere where there’s no snow, you still need protection from UVA even on cloudy days. That’s because up to 80% of the sun’s rays can go through the clouds and penetrate your skin. So you definitely need sunscreen even on the coldest cloudiest of days.



We said they were only 5 times but one last time that you think you’re protected when you’re not is after you’ve applied sunscreen and did not reapply after 2 hours. Sunscreen’s proper effectiveness can only last up to 2 hours and that’s also if you’ve used the proper amount on your skin (1 tablespoon’s worth). Even when you’re using an effective sunscreen that gives you protection from both UVB and UVA like La Roche Posay’s Anthelios 50+, you still need to reapply every 2 hours until the sun goes down. That’s the only way to ensure the maximum protection you can get.


So now you know that the next time you’re in the shade you should apply sunscreen because just like when you’re in the car or indoors, you are not protected from the sun’s harmful rays.