What is the difference between a chemical and physical sunblock?
There are two types of active ingredients found in sunscreens; physical and chemical. Active ingredients determine how effective a particular sunscreen is.
Physical sunblock ingredients include titanium dioxide and zinc oxide, which physically block UV radiation. These ingredients cause it to be a broad spectrum sunblock, protecting against both UVA and UVB damage.
Chemical sunblock ingredients, such as octyl salicylate, avobenzone, and octisalate act to absorb harmful UV rays. This sunblocking process takes place in the actual layers of the skin. Within the skin, the chemical sunblock ingredients react with the harmful UV rays and transforms them into heat. Chemical sunblock ingredients are notorious for causing sensitivity to the skin, due to absorption.
UV light comes in two types. UVB is the stronger, more direct type. It causes sunburns and also casues our skin to tan. It is found during the middle of the day in the spring, summer, and early fall. UVA light is less powerful and will not burn but it penetrates deeper into the skin. It is the primary cause of aging skin and occurs all day, year round. Though not as powerful as UVB, there is much more UVA radiation and its effect is cumulative.
Of the two types of sunscreen, the physical sunscreens are much more effective, last longer on the skin, are less irritating and do not cause allergies. For this reason, We strongly believe that physical sunscreens should be your primary choice for a sunscreen.
Depending on your skin type and amount of sun exposure, Image Skincare has a sunblock for everyone!
Our sunscreen for Seattle sunshine favorite is the Tinted SPF. It gives a great matte finish, and the perfect amount of tinted coverage, PLUS it has Zinc Oxide and Titanium Dioxide!