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The word sunscreen is sometimes used to describe both sunblock and sunscreen, but they differ in the way that they protect your skin.
Sunblock creates a barrier against UV rays and stops them from penetrating your skin -- a form of ‘physical’ sunscreen that tends to sit on the skin and leave a white coating.
By contrast, sunscreen contains chemicals that absorb the sun’s UV rays before they can cause damage to the skin -- known as ‘chemical’ sunscreens. When applied to the skin, sunscreen will soak in.
So, which should you choose?
When to choose sunblock
If you have sensitive skin, are prone to spots (acne) or have a condition like rosacea it's usually best to use a fragrance-free sunblock. Sunblocks contain minerals, which are less likely to upset your skin. It's also a good choice for children.
When to choose sunscreen
If you don’t have sensitive skin, you can use a sunscreen. These are available as lotions, gels, sprays and creams, but the main thing is that your skin is covered.
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