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Swot up on suncare

Your by-numbers guide to safely soaking up the rays this summer

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5 STARS

…on a sunscreen tell you it has unbeatable anti-ageing power. They refer to protection against UVA rays, which cause ageing and longer-term skin damage (while the SPF refers to guarding against sunburn). ‘Any sun damage is as permanent as a tattoo,’ says Boots suncare expert Clare O’Connor. To protect against ageing and sunburn, we love Soltan, the only leading suncare brand with full 5-star UVA protection*. Try Soltan Once Advanced 8HR Protect Suncare Lotion SPF50+ Boots Exclusive £10/1,000 points (200ml).

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So if you notice changes in the appearance of any of your moles (or spot new ones), get them checked as soon as possible, as this can be a warning sign. The Mole Scanning Service, available in selected stores (boots.com/mole- scanning-service), can help address concerns.

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…is how often you should be slapping on the sunscreen to stay protected (as well as after every swim). We rate water-resistant Nivea Sun Protect & Moisture Lotion SPF50+, £6/600 points (200ml). Bonus: it also helps reduce the risk of sun allergies such as itchy rashes. Start the stopwatch!

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SUNCARE SUMS

Layering different products that contain SPF (including make-up) doesn’t add more protection. ‘It just offers the sun-protection factor level stated on the highest one and won’t increase it – although it does help to ensure no missed patches,’ says Clare. ‘So look for a moisturiser with high levels of protection against UVA and UVB to use under make-up. Or, if your make-up or skincare doesn’t contain at least SPF25, make sure you also wear a sunscreen that does.’ We like CeraVe Facial Moisturising Lotion SPF25 ††, £12/1,200 points (52ml).

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…is how much sunscreen you need for coverage when you’re in your swimsuit. ‘People often only apply about a quarter of what they should,’ says Clare. ‘In fact, women get most skin cancer on their legs, as they tend to be neglected.’ Try an easy-to-use SPF heavyweight, such as La Roche-Posay Anthelios XL Spray SPF50+ ††, £17.50/1,750 points (200ml).

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The take-out: slather yourself in a sunscreen that’s water-resistant before you go for a dip

Words Rosie Benson

*The star rating is a measure of the absorbance of UVA relative to UVB. Other brands not displaying a star-rating symbol may still offer high levels of UVA protection. Supporting data can be found at boots.com/soltan-uva-protection. †Operated by ScreenCancer UK. Subject to eligibility criteria and pharmacy team member availability. Charges apply. The first mole/pigmented lesion scanned will cost £35. Each additional mole/pigmented lesion in the one consultation will cost £15. ††Available in selected stores.

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