Doctors have been telling patients for years that sunscreen can shield the skin from premature aging. Now, new research proves what doctors have long seen.
A new Australian study, reported in the “Annals of Internal Medicine,” found that people who used sunscreen daily had 24 percent less aging of the skin as compared to people who only used sunscreen part of the time. The study consisted of 900 people younger than 55 and found that daily users were less likely to have greater skin aging after four and a half years.
“Those who even had a good amount of sun damage had an improvement in the aging of the skin,” Doris Day, a dermatologist in New York, told Time magazine. “We have been saying for years and years, use SPF every day all year round. I always say, ‘If you don’t need a flashlight to see outside, you need protection.’”
The study was published about the same time as the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) instituted new sunscreen regulations. Sunscreen makers must now distinguish between which products are labeled “broad spectrum,” meaning they protect against ultraviolet A as well as ultraviolet B rays. The guidelines also require sunscreens include directions to reapply regularly and prohibit brands from claiming they are waterproof or sweat-proof.