Can K-Beauty Solving the Extreme UV Problem in Indonesia?

Straddling the equator, Indonesia is a tropical country with a wet, hot, humid climate the entire year, with high temperatures often in the 90s F during the day and the steamy 70s F at night. Cooler temperatures prevail in the highlands. The humidity is usually between 70 and 90 percent. The only relief is air conditioned buildings, which are not as plentiful as in the West. Indonesians have a much higher tolerance for heat and lower tolerance for cold than Westerners. In the mountains, on what seems like a warm day, you see Indonesians bundled in heavy coats.

So, that’s normal if many Indonesians choose to use sun protection. According to Statista, Revenue in the Sun Protection segment amounts to US$157.50m in 2023. The market is expected to grow annually by 10.07% (CAGR 2023-2027). But, there is an alternative to reduce the use of sunblock. Indonesians no longer have to use sunblock every time and everywhere because one of the ingredients in sunblock is also inside on skincare. 

This solution will go well because according to Statista, the market is expected to grow annually by 4.97% (CAGR 2023-2027). This data explains that many Indonesian like to use skincare to create healthy skin including to protect from Ultraviolet (UV) radiation. So, this is not a coincidence if many Indonesians choose to use skincare to prevent bad impacts from UV. 

One of the most famous kinds of skincare that Indonesians often use is from Korea. The trend is called K-Beauty. Some cosmetics from Korea use titanium dioxide or one of the ingredients that can protect skin from UV radiation. This commodity not only can protect from UV radiation but can brighten the skin especially in bad weather like what is happening now in Indonesia. 

As Indonesian people are experiencing heat waves lately, the Meteorology and Climatology Agency (BMKG) announced that extreme ultraviolet (UV) rays have hit several regions in Indonesia, including the capital city of Jakarta. Not only that, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) writes that lack of sunlight will affect mood and also increase the threat of vitamin D deficiency. 

But the trend of K-Beauty can solve this problem because some ingredients contain titanium dioxide. What is Titanium Dioxide? 

Titanium dioxide absorbs and scatters ultraviolet rays. Compared to zinc oxide, titanium dioxide is as effective at blocking UVB rays, but it's somewhat less effective for short UVA rays (UVA II), and almost completely ineffective against long UVA rays (UVA I). In short, titanium dioxide is inferior to zinc oxide for broad-spectrum coverage. To increase protection, titanium dioxide can be combined with chemical UVB and UVA blockers and/or zinc oxide, but products that rely solely on titanium dioxide as an active ingredient will allow significant UVA damage while effectively preventing UVB rays from giving the user any natural cues to get out of the sun.

If you want other ingredients to protect your skin from extreme UV, you can use Zinc Oxide, OMCX, Octocrylene, Octyl Salicylate, and Homosalate.