I wanna soak up the sun.....
I don't know about you, but I am so excited that Spring is here.
I am one of those people, that love the extra long days, waking up to the sun, rather than waking up in the dark. You know, the small things.
I love a good tan, and although as a Skin Therapist I know the risks and realities of tanning, I want to make sure I am being as safe as possible. I want to make sure you are enjoying the sun safely too.
So here's a scenario I frequently encounter with first-time clients:
Client: "Well, I don't really wear SPF Every day. I just am not outside that much for my job. I don't work near windows. I will apply if I actually go on vacation but that's about it."
Sounds familiar? Let's unpack this.
I'm sorry you spend so much time indoors! LOL. That is just not healthy for anyone. May I suggest a short walk every few hours, go out and get your lunch, take a coffee break? Everyone needs that fresh air and the vitamin D we get from sun exposure is an essential. This may revive your depleted energy around that 3:30 dreaded hour. I've been there, so I know. This can also help your work performance.
The majority of us that commute to work these days will be exposed to UVA or UVB rays at some point in time. If you drive a car, walk to mass transit or ride a bike to work, guess what? You need protection from the sun. What about when you go running, grocery shopping, a coffee date with a friend, brunch al fresco? All these exposure times add up. Think about it for a sec.
That's great that you protect yourself on vacation, but if you're allowing your skin to risk skin damage all other times of the year, you're not really doing the most you can for your skin. So let's talk about why that is.
How the Sun affects your skin:
The sun is a beautiful and glorious star, she doesn't care what comes her way, clouds, glass, trees, she's get to you.
The the image to the right explains how the sun effects your skin.
The sun emits 2 types of rays you should know UVA and UVB rays. UVA rays are known as the aging rays, and UVB the burning rays.
UVB are known as the burning rays. They have shorter wavelengths, and don't travel as far as UVA rays, but they do make it through the epidermis. The body, thinks its under attack and send color pigment to try to protect you, which is why you tan. But be aware, this is a response to damage to the skin, so tan with a little bittersweet knowledge that you will pay for this later lol!
UVA rays cause you to AGE!!!
Yes, folks age. UVA rays have longer wavelengths and travel farther and deeper into the skin. They can make it all the way down to the base layer of your skin, this damage doesn't show up as a tan but will show up as those sun spots you see later in your 30s and 40s.
So back to our first-time client.
Even though you may not see the sun, it sees you, and you need protection. Also, sun damage is the leading cause of premature aging. Here are just a few effects:
- Fine Lines
- Age Spots, Freckles
- Tough, leathery skin, texturized and dry
I don't know about you, but I hear a lot of my clients and their concern is premature aging. If you could do one this for 30 seconds a day that would help prevent that, doesn't applying SPF sound easy?!
So now you're on board, but what where do you start?
Well, let's start with the basics.
There are two types of sunscreen:
- Physical Sunscreens
- Chemical Sunscreens
Physical sunscreens work by absorbing and deflecting rays that come in contact with the skin. These products act as a "shield" on the skin, and are usually comprised of two types of mineral filters:
- Zinc Oxide
- Titanium Oxide
Chemical Sunscreens work by absorbing rays and converting them into heat that is dispersed within the skin. Some common chemical filters are:
Putting it all together.....
So there are some benefits to both types, and there are a lot of great products available that offer both physical and chemical filters.
When using both types, you have the first defense of the shield from the sun, backed by a second defense of dispersion should any rays make it through.
Using both allows for less of the "white cast" associated with physical sunscreens.
But the option of a purely physical sunscreen can benefit those that may get irritated by chemical filters.
Let's get you started!
We've provided a few picks to get you started. Check out some of our picks in our retail therapy section!
The application is key! An almond-sized amount is enough for your entire face and neck. Apply after your wash and tone your skin in the morning, about 20 mins before you head out the door. If you are at the beach, try to re-apply every few hours for optimal protection.
As always, we wish you a happy and healthy season! If you have any questions! we're always here to help!