Expired Sunscreen vs. No Sunscreen – Unfold the Truth

Sunscreen is one of the most important skincare products that we all need throughout the year. But there is a question that keeps coming up in the minds of all sunscreens-users – ‘is it safe to use an expired sunscreen rather than skipping it totally’? Well, it is of no surprise that a bottle of expired sunscreen has been sitting in your shelf for long and you have been wondering whether to use it or throw it away. But before we give you a straight answer regarding expired sunscreen vs. no sunscreen, let us dig a bit deeper into the significance of using sunscreen:

Expired Sunscreen vs. No Sunscreen – Unfold the Truth

Who Should Use Sunscreen?

From an infant to an adult – each and everyone should use sunscreen, especially on those parts of the skin which are exposed to the sun. It also does not depend upon the skin color of a person.

When Should Sunscreen Be Used?

Everyday. Whenever going outside or cooking in the kitchen in front of a flame, make sure that you apply a layer of sunscreen to your skin. Do not forget to make use of the product even if it is a cloudy day.

Also Read – Sunscreen Facts Decoded –  Which sunscreen is best for you ? Here

Why Is It So Important?

Almost 80% people diagnosed with skin cancers every year are victims of the harmful effects of UVA and UVB rays emitted by the sun. According to scientists, regular use of a broad-spectrum sunscreen can provide enough protection from this along with certain short-term damages like sunburns. It is recommended that you always use a sunscreen with SPF 30 (sun protection factor 30) or more as it will block as much as 97 percent damaging rays of the sun. Also, apply it every two hours so that you can get the most out of it.

As you have already known about the importance of using sunscreen daily, it is quite evident that using ‘no sunscreen’ is not at all desirable. Now, let us discover the truth about expired sunscreen:


How Fast Does a Sunscreen Expire?

You will find the expiry date of a sunscreen on its label. Usually, it takes one or two years to expire. But in most of the cases, the date of expiration goes up to three years. It means, your sunscreen is absolutely good to use as long as 3 years without any worry, because it retains its strength up to that time.

Also Read – Sunblock Vs Sunscreen, Which Would Be Your Pick This Summer? Here

How Long Can You Use a Sunscreen?

Wait! Don’t throw away your sunscreen bottle as soon as it expires. The secret is that you can use the product up to 6 months even after expiration, if it remains intact in color and consistency. However, when the color of the liquid changes and it becomes too runny or too sticky, you should toss the whole bottle. A foul smelling sunscreen should also be discarded immediately.

Therefore, it is quite clear that using an expired sunscreen is better than opting for no sunscreen at all as long as the product is in good condition. Hope it helps you take the right decision regarding your sun protection routine.

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About the author


A digital media professional, an ardent beauty lover and a passionate foodie - this is what describes Nilankeeta in a nutshell. She is in a serious relationship with music and can't think of a life without family, friends, and online shopping. When not working on projects or experimenting with foods or humming a new tune, you can find her relishing sarcastic stories saturated in humor and wit.