Yes, You Should Still Be Wearing SPF Under Your Protective Face Mask — Here's Why

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In the few months since COVID-19 hit the US, we've found ourselves adjusting to a handful of new routines, one of which is the recommendation that everyone wear protective face masks while out in public to stop the spread of the virus. The logistics of what to do and what not to do while wearing one, though, might be confusing. For example, if you're wondering whether applying sunscreen is a necessary skin-care step to take when you're covering half of your face up, you're not alone. The answer to that question, put simply: yes, you should.

"I always recommend wearing full coverage SPF and to reapply often, even when wearing a protective face mask," board certified dermatologist Shari Sperling, DO, told POPSUGAR. "Although these masks cover a portion of the face, you should still wear SPF to ensure protection from harmful UV rays."

In some way, this is similar to the question of whether or not you should still be wearing SPF indoors with less exposure to the sun, but you should be wearing sunscreen then too. Just like wearing makeup or staying inside won't protect you from UV rays, wearing a protective face mask doesn't provide you with any extra protection either since they can only cover about half of your face.

Shop a few of our favorite sunscreens ahead.