How To Determine Your Burn Factor
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How To Determine Your Burn Factor

  • In order to determine how long you can stay in the sun with any given SPF, you have to use some math skills.

  • Measure how many minutes it takes you to burn without sunscreen and multiply that number by the SPF number. This’ll give you your maximum exposure time.

  • If you start burning after 10 minutes of sun exposure and you’re using SPF 15, multiply 10 by 15 and you’ll see that you can be in the sun for 150 minutes before you need to reapply.

  • This equation works best if you apply sunscreen 30 minutes before you’re exposed to the sun.

  • Make sure you use enough sunscreen. Whatever amount you think is appropriate, double it. We all have the tendency to use less sunscreen than we actually need.

  • Higher SPF numbers mean you’re allowed more sun exposure time. The UVB absorption also changes, but doesn’t increase exponentially.

  • For example: SPF 15 absorbs 93.3% of UVB rays, while SPF 30 absorbs 96.7%. While the SPF number doubled, the absorption increased by 3.4%.


The sun is stronger today than ever before. More and more people are getting skin cancer and side effects from over exposure to the sun. Simply put, don’t mess around. Protect yourself by lubing up your skin with SPF.

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