Skin Health Expert Dija Ayodele Tells Us Why We Shouldn't Skip Sunscreen

Yes, you need it all 365 days.

BY  YARD + PARISH   /  JAN  19  2022,  16:30 GMT



Do dark skinned people really need sunscreen? If you've been blessed with melanin, then you've probably had this thought more than once. Growing up in a Caribbean household, we never thought SPF was meant for us. As a child, that pasty white product plastered on red noses and shoulders across the beach sand held a subconscious exclusivity that seemed to say, "not you, though". But as we do with everything that makes us feel unseen, darker skinned people reclaimed the narrative, turning sunburn and liver spots into silly side effects of "caucasity", but at what cost? 


It is only recently that the truth about sunscreen has been properly investigated. Due to the uprising of virtually undetectable sunscreen lotions catering to brown skin like Black Girl Sunscreen and M Squared Skincare, an incredible discourse on skin health has finally opened up to us. We asked skin health specialist and author of Black Skin: The definitive skincare guide Dija Ayodele (@dija_ayodele) why sunscreen is so important for darker skin tones and when you should be using it.

1. What are the top 3 benefits of using sunscreen on darker skin tones?

"It prevents the premature ageing of the skin, the worsening of hyperpigmentation and of course it also prevents sunburn!"

For all the girlies battling dark spots, all the retinoids and exfoliators in the world mean nothing if you don't use a good topical SPF. So make sure you're maintaining those results!

2. Why is it so important to continue wearing sunscreen in the colder (and darker) months?

"UVA rays which cause premature ageing of the skin are present all year round, even in winter. So long as there is light, sunscreen should be applied to protect the skin."


3. At what step of your skincare routine should sunscreen be applied?

"Sunscreen is applied as the last step in your skincare routine - so after moisturiser and before make up."

Think of your skincare routine as the lacquer and SPF as your topcoat!

4. How do you reapply when wearing makeup?

"My favourite is actually to use a sunscreen spray!"

You don't have to sacrifice your face beat to keep up with you healthy skin routine. Apply SPF every 2 hours with a spritz of your favourite sunscreen spray to minimize UVA exposure and keep your foundation in tact.


Need to Know: What is the difference between SPF 30 and SPF 50? An SPF 30 allows around 3 percent of UVB rays to be absorbed into the skin and SPF 50 allows only about 2 percent of those rays through. Although that might seem like a very small difference, that means that SPF 30 is allowing 50 percent more UV radiation onto your skin!



Skincare Expert and Aesthetician, Dija Ayodele is author of the newly published Black Skin, The Definitive Skincare Guide, owner of skincare clinic West Room Aesthetics in London and founder of the multi award-winning educational platform Black Skin Directory (BSD). With over 10 years experience in understanding and treating skin health, she has become a pivotal champion and advocate for providing the tools for people of colour to be educated on their unique skincare needs whilst pushing the beauty industry forward in its requirements to serve this sector.

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