Do you need to wear moonscreen?

The other day, someone asked me if you need “moonscreen”. Like, you wear SUNscreen to protect yourself from the sun’s light, so why not wear MOONscreen to protect yourself from the moon’s light?

Sure, many of us won’t go out in the middle of the night – I know I am an early bird and like to be in bed by 9:30pm to get my beauty sleep.

But now that’s winter and the sun sets at 3pm, leaving its place to the moon already in the mid-afternoon, do you need to wear “moonscreen”when you’re out running errands or taking your dog for a walk?

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Why You Don’t Need Moonscreen?

The short answer is no. Here’s why:

The moon does NOT emit any light of its own. It just reflects the sunlight that hits it.

But, wait, Gio? Won’t this reflected sunlight damage your skin? Again, the answer is no. Dr Neil Schultz explains why:

“The diameter of the sun is slightly greater than 400 times the diameter of the moon. So if the moon were a perfectly reflective mirror reflecting 100% of the sunlight that hits it, it could only reflect 1/400th or ¼ of 1% of the sunlight.

But the moon’s surface is a very poor reflector, instead absorbing most of the visible and UV light that hits it… reflecting only 7 to 12% of visible light, and only about 0.7% of UV light… that’s less than 1% of the UV light.

So between the small size of the moon and it’s poor reflectance, only about 1/40 of 1% of the sun’s UV is reflected to the earth… Said another way, 99.98% of the sun’s UV does NOT get reflected. It’s just like wearing a sunscreen that blocks 99.98% of the sun.”

But what about that tiny amount of UV light that the moon does reflect to the earth? There’s no need to worry about it either: it simply gets absorbed by the atmosphere.

So, once the sun has set, you can stop reapplying sunscreen. After all, it’s called SUNscreen for a reason. 😉

Have you ever worn sunscreen at night? Let me know in the comments below.