5 Common Sunscreen Mistakes

We've got you covered this summer with tips to avoid these mishaps.

iStock_000041422022_FullSunscreen may be a staple in your summer beach bag, but that doesn’t mean you’re covered, even if you slather it on. Dr. Dunnett Durando, a dermatologist with Riverchase Dermatology in Naples, shares five of the most common sunscreen mishaps and how to avoid them.


For a look at our top sunscreen picks for the summer, click here.


Mistake: Applying sunscreen too late.

Do this: Apply it to dry skin at least 15 minutes before going outdoors to give it time to take effect and prevent a burn.

Mistake: Going for a swim too soon.

Do this: Even after applying water-resistant sunscreen, wait at least 15 minutes before going for a swim. Reapply at least every two hours, immediately after swimming, and more often if you sweat a lot.

Mistake: Using the same bottle for too long.

Do this: Check the expiration date, and if there isn’t one, write the date the sunscreen was purchased on the bottle and toss it after one year.

Mistake: Leaving the bottle in the car.

Do this: Avoid putting the bottle in extreme heat, which can make the product less effective. Put it in the cooler whenever you’re at the beach or on your boat; otherwise, keep it at room temperature.

Mistake: Skipping over important areas.

Do this: Remember to always apply sunscreen on your neck, ears, back, tops of your feet—and if you have thinning hair, apply it to your scalp or wear a wide-brimmed hat. Plus, swipe on a lip balm with a minimum SPF 30.

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