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Should I wear sunscreen on flights?

**Should I wear sunscreen on flights?**

When it comes to wearing sunscreen on flights, the answer is a resounding yes. Many people may not realize that even though you’re flying at 30,000 feet, you’re still being exposed to harmful UV rays from the sun. In fact, research has shown that UV radiation increases by about 6% for every 1,000 feet above sea level. This means that when you’re flying, you’re actually at a higher risk of exposure to UV radiation than when you’re on the ground.

Additionally, airplane windows do not completely block out UV rays, so sitting by the window doesn’t protect you from the sun’s harmful effects. In fact, a study conducted by JAMA Dermatology found that pilots flying for 56.6 minutes at 30,000 feet were exposed to the same amount of UV radiation as they would receive from a 20-minute tanning bed session. This goes to show that wearing sunscreen on flights is crucial for protecting your skin from the sun’s damaging rays.

FAQs about wearing sunscreen on flights

**1. Can airplane windows block UV rays?**
Yes, airplane windows do block some UVB rays, but UVA rays can still penetrate the glass, putting you at risk of exposure to harmful UV radiation.

**2. What SPF should I use when flying?**
It’s recommended to use a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 to effectively protect your skin from UV radiation.

**3. Do I need to reapply sunscreen during a long flight?**
Yes, it’s important to reapply sunscreen every two hours, especially on long flights, to ensure continuous protection from UV rays.

**4. Will wearing sunscreen make me break out?**
Look for oil-free and non-comedogenic sunscreen formulas to minimize the risk of breakouts while flying.

**5. Can I just rely on the sunscreen in my makeup?**
While some makeup products contain SPF, they often don’t provide adequate protection, so it’s best to use a dedicated sunscreen.

**6. Do flight attendants wear sunscreen?**
Many flight attendants do wear sunscreen during flights as a precaution against UV radiation exposure.

**7. Can I get sunburned on a plane?**
Yes, you can get sunburned on a plane if you’re not wearing sunscreen, especially if you’re sitting by the window.

**8. Will a hat protect me from UV rays on flights?**
Wearing a hat can provide additional protection from UV radiation, but it’s still essential to apply sunscreen to exposed skin.

**9. Can UV rays still harm me on overnight flights?**
Yes, UV rays can still harm you on overnight flights, as they can penetrate clouds and aircraft windows.

**10. Do I need to wear sunscreen on short flights?**
Even on short flights, it’s important to wear sunscreen, as UV radiation exposure can still occur.

**11. Can I use spray sunscreen on a plane?**
It’s best to use lotion sunscreen as spray sunscreen can become a breathing hazard in the confined space of an airplane.

**12. Can I rely on the UV protection in my clothing?**
Clothing with UV protection can provide an additional layer of defense against UV radiation, but sunscreen is still essential for exposed skin.

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