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20th March 2019

Sunscreens and Sensitive skin

Dry skin conditions like eczema, psoriasis and ichthyosis can make it difficult to find the right sunscreen. In this article, we give our advice on what to look for.

People with sensitive skin also need to protect themselves with sunscreen whenever they’re out and about. Wearing a high factor sunscreen (we would recommend no less than SPF 50) every day helps to protect people of all skin tones from the sun’s potentially harmful rays. Sunburn, pigmentation, premature ageing, wrinkles, and skin cancer are just some of the potential side effects of exposure to harmful UVA and UVB rays that can be protected against with daily sunscreen use.1

Choose a sunscreen with a high SPF, no matter what your skin type. Getting even coverage is important for all skin types, to avoid patches of damage on areas that have been missed, so invest in a sunscreen such as SunSense Ultra SPF50+ that provides improved coverage and reliable protection.

Find the sunscreen that suits your skin. You may need to get some samples to patch test on your skin to see which sunscreen suits you best.

In cases of solar urticaria, the most common photosensitivity disorder, studies have found that 60% of patients tested were sensitive only to visible light and not to UV radiation.2 While most sunscreens offer very little protection from visible light, SunSense™ Sensitive provides significant levels of protection against visible light and are therefore beneficial to people with photosensitivity disorders including solar urticaria, chronic actinic dermatitis and polymorphic light eruptions.3 Protection from UVA radiation is of primary importance to those patients taking medication which predisposes them to drug-induced photosensitivity.4

In most SunSense™ sunscreens, UV absorbers are combined with titanium dioxide. This helps provide greater protection against UV radiation. In many cases, it also works synergistically with UV absorbers to give higher SPF values.

We would also always recommend following these four easy tips when out and about in the sun;

  1. cover up where possible,
  2. stay in the shade,
  3. keep hydration up
  4. always wear plenty of sun cream


  1. Hiom S (2006) Public awareness regarding UV risks and vitamin D – the challenges for UK skin cancer prevention campaigns. Progress in Biophysics and Molecular Biology 92: 161-6
  2. Uetsu N, Miyauchi-Hashimoto H, Okamoto H, Horio T. The clinical and photobiological-characteristics of solar urticarial in 40 patients. Br J Dermatol 2000; 142:32-38.
  3. Hawk JLM. Cutaneous Photobiology in: Champion RH, Burton JL, Burns DA, BreathnachSM editors. Rook / Wilkinson / Ebling Textbook of Dermatology, Volume 2 Sixth edition. Milan, Blackwell Science Ltd 1998. Chapter 25, Cutaneous Photobiology;p.973 – 993.
  4. Marks R. Skin cancer – childhood protection affords lifetime protection. Med J Aust 1987:147(10): 475-6.

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