Watch the slop when slapping on sunscreen, researchers warn

Study shows only 6% of people using an SPF product manage to cover their faces properly

Sun protection creams are an Australian staple, heavily promoted to protect against skin cancer, but are people applying them properly?

UK researchers say probably not, with only 6% of people in their study covering their face completely with a sunscreen or SPF moisturiser on two consecutive applications.

The facial areas most missed are the eyelids and the medial canthi, both high risk sites for melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancers, say the University of Liverpool authors.

Their study of 84 volunteers looked at the way people applied sunscreen compared with how they applied SPF moisturisers, which have grown in popularity over the past few years.  

They found those who used moisturisers left 16.6% of their face uncovered compared with 11% of the face among sunscreen-users.

When asked about their perceived coverage, most participants believed (strongly agree/agree) they had applied

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