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What is SPF and how to use it together with technology to better protect yourself

Aug 25 2021
3 min
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Paula
Web Developer

Summer is already here, the sun is shining and the pool season is booming, and most people enjoy their vacation on the beach or somewhere warm. 

But it's all fun and games until someone gets a bad burn, so how exactly can we prevent this from happening?

And, most importantly, what role does technology play in this?

This is exactly the thing that we will cover in this article, a bit of a deep dive into skincare and more specifically the importance of SPF and protecting ourselves from the damages caused by the sun.

What exactly is SPF?

SPF (sunscreen) stands for Solar Protection Factor and is a skincare product that creates a barrier between your skin and the harmful UVA/UVB rays. This product comes in different shapes and sizes (eg. cream, powder, spray) and is accompanied by a number that indicates the degree of protection. 

The best and most indicated type of SPF is the one with a broad spectrum and a 30 - 50+ degree of protection. 

Here's a little illustration that gives us a sneak peek of how SPF works in the fight against UV rays.

 

Why should we use it?

The UVA and UVB rays are pretty harmful. UVA rays are associated with premature aging and UVB with burning, so the thing with SPF is that it prevents these rays from penetrating the protective barrier and getting through to the skin. Studies have shown that repetitive sun exposure without any kind of protection can lead to the formation of cancerous cells as well as other skin conditions such as destruction of the elastic and collagen tissue (causing lines, wrinkles, and weakening skin), hyperpigmentation (freckles) or skin discoloration. 

So to answer the question, protecting ourselves from these damages caused by the sun could be a pretty good reason for getting that SPF.

How can we protect ourselves in the best possible way? And how is technology helping us in doing so?

There are a lot of studies that show that wearing SPF daily can significantly decrease the skin cancer risk and slow down the aging process. 

Yes, you heard that right, daily. 

Even if it's raining, snowing or you don't go out (UV rays can easily get through the window). It is also important to reapply it every few hours, especially in the summer because the efficiency can wear off after some time. But how exactly can we make sure that we are 100% percent protected? Or at least the biggest possible percent.

This is where technology steps in. 

It is well known that technology has evolved deeply, especially in the last decade, so the skincare industry was not passed over by this evolution. 

But what are our beauty tech choices when it comes to sun protection and skincare?

Here are a few features to look at when you design and build (or simply use) a glam tech product:

  • Artificial Intelligence (AI) Tech for Skin Analysis and Ultra-Personalization
    There are already a lot of apps that use artificial intelligence to scan the face (or hair scalp) and identify the strengths or weaknesses of your skin (e.g., FitskinHairAIVichy skin consult AI), some of them also being able to create personal skincare routines. 
  • Internet of Things (IoT), ​​smart beauty devices, and AI for advanced analysis, skin emulation, and simulations
    Similar to Fitskin, a device that can be attached to your phone and it can scan your skin, there is SunScreenR that shows you where you've missed a spot when applying sunscreen or where sunscreen has worn off your skin. 
  • Machine learning for tinted SPF shade finder and matcher
  • Augmented Reality (AR): 3D virtual glasses try-on, jewelry try-on, makeup, or even tinted SPF try-on
  • Connected beauty systems to customize your skincare treatment, gather data about your routine and provide you with loyalty programs within brand-powered skincare ecosystems.
    There are also all kinds of UV lamps that do the same thing or it can also be achieved by following these instructions for those of you who have a camera. 
  • Product recommendations based on a professional-grade assessment of your skin condition and needs

And while all these technologies are already up on the market, we fully understand that some of them are only available in certain countries or areas, so you can always keep yourself protected from UV exposure by keeping track of the UV index via your weather app (on iOS) or by using small gadgets such as bracelets (eg. sunsprite, sunfriend) that measure your bright light and UV exposure.

There's a saying that goes "SPF is BFF", but now we saw exactly why. So these being said, go and have a wonderful summer at the beach, but don't forget the sunscreen and the right apps and gadgets!
 

At Wolfpack Digital, we're already helping glam tech and beauty tech businesses across the world to design, build and launch innovative apps that will change the industry and the way we take care of ourselves. Got a beauty startup, or are you looking to digitalize any beauty services or any part of the skincare, make-up or haircare process? Get in touch with us and let’s talk!  

 

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