Avoid, Cover, Apply: a dermatologist’s guide to sun protection

During these warm days, it is especially important to protect your skin properly. We spoke with dermatologist Göran van Rooijen, who works at the Spaarne Gasthuis and Huid Medisch Centrum, and is an ambassador for Spot the Dot.

"I truly believe that we should cherish our largest organ, the skin. Not only does it protect us from all the harmful things that come our way, but it also regulates many processes in the body and produces important vitamins. So, protect it well and also get to know your own skin."

How can we ensure optimal protection for our skin against the sun while keeping it easy to maintain? "When it comes to proper sun protection, it's best to start with this simple rule: Avoid, Cover, Apply."


"The best thing you can do is avoid prolonged exposure to the sun: this way you will never damage your cells to UV rays. Usually, the sun's intensity is at its strongest between 12 PM and 3 PM, so try to avoid the strong UV radiation during that period." It helps to seek shade during that period. If you're at the beach, make sure to sit under an umbrella. Or find shade on the terrace!

Being indoors doesn't automatically mean you're protected: UVA radiation is noticeable throughout the year and can even penetrate through windows. Therefore, it's important to protect your skin every day, even when you're indoors or in the shade, by using sunscreen.


Don't be fooled by just the temperature. Even on a breezy day, the sun's intensity can be strong. With various weather apps, you can see the sun's intensity for the day, allowing you to assess the necessary protection.

"If you're outside during the peak sun intensity, I recommend covering your skin. That way, the sun won't reach your skin." A linen blouse, a good pair of sunglasses, and a wide-brimmed hat can go a long way in protecting yourself from harmful UV rays. Because children often have more sensitive skin, it's important to protect them with clothing as well. "An easy way to protect your children is with UV swimwear." 


"Last, but certainly not least, there's applying sunscreen. We recommend applying a 'shot glass' amount or approximately two full tablespoons of sunscreen to the entire body that is exposed to the sun. Also, make sure to use at least SPF 30." That way, you are certain that the sunscreen provides sufficient protection for your skin.

For the face, it's easy to use two fingers' worth of sunscreen as a guideline. Reapply every two hours to ensure optimal protection. With our mineral sunscreen, you are immediately protected because the mineral filter ‘sits’ on the skin and acts like a mirror. This means the formula doesn't have to absorb into the skin like a regular chemical filter.


"Finally, it's important to nourish your skin when spending time in the sun. Both internally by staying adequately hydrated on a warm day, and externally by applying a rich base ointment or aftersun lotion after a day in the sun. On a warm day, your skin loses a lot of moisture through sweating, and by nourishing the skin in the evening, this loss is counteracted." Our Dry Body Oil is an aftersun to hydrate and nourish your skin after a day in the sun. It is formulated with natural ingredients like golden seaweed, sweet almond oil, and upcycled prickly pear oil, which are rich in vitamins A and E.