The number one cause of wrinkles and pigmentation is sun exposure over a lifetime. With warm weather finally here, if sunscreen isn't already a part of your daily skin care regime, now is the time. As I always say, it's easier to prevent sun damage than it is to correct sun damage. I'd like to simplify sun protection and share my 10 tips to prevent aging, sun damaged skin:
1. Seek out a broad spectrum sunscreen to protects against UVA and UVB rays.
Sunlight is made up of two harmful rays: UVA (aging) rays + UVB (burning) rays. UVA rays penetrate deep into the dermis (the skin’s thickest layer). Unprotected sun exposure can lead to premature skin aging and suppression of the immune system. When your skin’s defenses are down, you’re at risk for skin cancer. UVB rays burn the superficial layers of your skin. Their intensity vary by season, location and time of day with peak hours between 10am and 4pm.
2. Choose a mineral sunscreen.
The difference between chemical and mineral sunscreens is the difference between their active sun protection ingredients. Chemical sunscreens contain chemical active ingredients designed to absorb and dissipate UVA/UVB rays, while mineral sunscreens contain mineral active ingredients such as titanium dioxide and zinc oxide to scatter and reflect UVA/UVB rays. Apply chemical sunscreen at least 30 minutes before sun exposure, while mineral sunscreen is effective right after application.
3. Do not be fooled by SPF (sun protection factor).
Sunscreens are classified by an SPF number which refers to their ability to deflect UVB rays. SPF rating is calculated by comparing the amount of time needed to burn sunscreen-protected skin vs. unprotected skin. If a person who might typically BURN after 10 minutes in the sun puts on SPF 2, they have double that time (20 minutes) before a SUNBURN develops. Skin protected with SPF 15 would take 15 times longer and SPF 30 would take 30 times longer.
4. A higher SPF does not mean that it is twice as strong.
SPF15 blocks 93% UVA rays, SPF30 blocks 97% UVA rays, SPF50 blocks 98% UVA rays.
5. Reapplication of sunscreen is key.
Sunscreen needs to be applied and reapplied every 2 hours and do not skimp on product. Apply 1 oz per application (2 Tbsp or a shot glass). To conserve sunscreen, cover up with clothing. Wear a wide-brimmed hat, sunglasses, long sleeved shirt or pants. Clothes are more reliable than sunscreen with no need to apply or reapply.
6. Wear sunscreen everyday.
Don't be fooled by a cloudy day - you can still get sunburned through cloud cover. Use extra caution near water, sand and snow as they can reflect and strengthen the sun's rays.
7. Makeup with SPF will not do.
Don't rely on the SPF in your makeup. Consider it an extra layer, not your main safeguard.
8. Don't forget to protect the back of your neck, chest, ears & lips.
We tend to focus on our face and body but forget to apply sunscreen to the back of the neck, chest, ears and lips. You can actually sunburn your scalp so wearing a hat will protect your scalp and shade your face. Protect your lips with a SPF15 lip balm.
9. Check the sunscreen expiration date.
As sunscreens do break down in efficacy and expire, replace them annually.
10. Keep newborns out of the sun.
Sunscreens should only be used on babies over the age of 6 months.
Be sure to protect the skin now so that you don't need to correct or uno the damage caused by the sun. I don't encourage hiding from the sun. Quite the contrary. I recommend enjoying our summer days but be respectful of the sun. Invest in, apply and reapply a high quality, broad spectrum, nourishing sunscreen.
Eminence Sun Defense Minerals SPF 30
Eminence's Sun Defense is a weightless, water-resistant, SPF 30 mineral powder sunscreen in a convenient brush tube applicator. It offers translucent or minimal coverage, can be worn over moisturizer or makeup, is available in 6 shades and ideal for men and women.
COOLA Face SPF 30 Cucumber Matte Finish
COOLA's facial sunscreen SPF 30 hydrates the skin yet offers a matte finish and 40 minutes of water resistance.
Eminence Bright Skin Moisturizer SPF 30
The Natural Hydroquinone Alternative in this moisturizer helps lighten and brighten pigmentation and dark spots while protecting against future sun damage.
Eminence Red Currant Protective Moisturizer SPF 30
For normal to combination skin types, this ultra-light SPF 30 moisturizer offers a matte finish with zinc oxide and tea tree to heal while combating the sun's damaging rays.
Eminence Tomato Sun Cream SPF 16
To hydrate yet reduce inflammation for normal to dry skin while protecting against photo-aging.
Eminence Tropical Vanilla Sun Cream SPF 32
A rich, dewy moisturizer for dry and dehydrated skin. The vanilla improves circulation of the skin while protecting against sun damage.
Eminence Mineral Tinted Moisturizer SPF 25
Tinted moisturizer for all skin types contains hydrating aloe, linden sea, shea butter and jojoba oil to nourish and support the moisture levels in the skin while providing a light tint and sun protection. Can be worn alone or with a moisturizer.
Eminence Tropical Vanilla SPF 32 Body Sunscreen
This body sunscreen feels like a light yet creamy body lotion. It contains a hydrating blend of shea butter and broad spectrum UV protection with zinc oxide which has clinically proven to increase moisture content by 250% in just 7 days.
Raw Elements Eco Formula SPF 30
Rated #1 by the EWG, Raw Elements Eco Formula 30+ is a safe, effective and non-GMO sunscreen ideal for children. It is water resistant for up to 80 minutes and contains 23% non-nano zinc oxide, so you know you are protected.
COOLA Baby SPF 50 Facial Sunscreen
For babies 6+ months or for those with extremely sensitive skin, this ultra water resistant sunscreen contains shea and cocoa butter blended with avocado and coconut oils to help boost hydration and protect skin from the damaging elements.
Raw Elements Eco Stick SPF 30
Remember, it's easier to prevent sun damage than it is to correct sun damage so apply your sunscreen today!