What is the “two-finger” method? We tell you how to apply sunscreen correctly

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The number for sunscreen strength on your favorite bottle of sunscreen may be in the high double digits, but you won’t get that protection for your skin unless you know how much of the cosmetic you should use. Some researchers and fashion bloggers are calling for a simple “two-finger” method to help you get the most out of the sunscreen in your cream.

The sun protection factor, or SPF, that a sunscreen provides is determined by testing skin that has been generously coated with a thick layer of sunscreen. But studies have shown that most people apply only 25% to 75% of the amount of cosmetics indicated and needed to protect their skin.

No international sunscreen standard specifies how much sunscreen you should use, but it is assumed to be the same amount that was originally used to test the product. Not surprisingly, consumers don’t know how to apply sunscreen effectively, resulting in burns and inflammation of the skin and affecting the rate of aging, especially when it comes to the neck, décolletage and face.

The unofficial “dosage guide” is based on the “rule of nines,” which divides the skin’s surface into 11 areas, each representing about 9% of the total body. These bszars are:

  • Head, neck and face
  • Left arm
  • Right shoulder
  • Upper back
  • Lower back
  • Upper front part of torso
  • Lower front part of torso
  • Upper right leg and thigh
  • Upper left leg and thigh
  • Left leg from knee down and foot
  • Right leg from knee down and foot

The authors of the method say that the right amount of sunscreen to apply to each of these 11 areas is just the amount equal to two fingers (middle and index finger). This means that you should squeeze two strips of sunscreen from the tip to their base, and then apply that amount to each of those areas.

This is the gauge that nature has equipped us with. This means that we, our partners and children need different amounts of sunscreen, and our fingers are perfect to determine these parameters for us.

If you don’t want to cover your body with such a generous layer of sunscreen all at once, an alternative would be to apply sunscreen “on one finger” at first, and then reapply within half an hour of the first application. Keep in mind that this treatment must then be repeated, as water and sweat wash these products off the surface of our skin. For reapplication by the pool or on the beach, spray or oil sunscreens are great – they are easier to spread on the skin and absorb quickly.

The “two-finger rule” can also be used for everyday make-up. This amount of cream will be perfect as a base for your makeup, providing you with adequate protection from the sun’s harmful effects and moisturizing those particularly delicate areas of your face that need special care and attention to maintain their youthful appearance and glow for as long as possible.

Read also: Tanning – should you really avoid it?

Main photo: Rido/ stock.adobe.com

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