When most people hear the phrase sun damage, their first thought is to classify it as a sunburn and think nothing else of it. Unfortunately, sun damage is much more severe than that. A sunburn is simply a result of too much exposure to the sun’s UV rays.
Sun damage is manifest through dark spots, or sun spots, wrinkles, sunburns and types of skin cancer. What is more alarming is that UV rays from the sun are responsible for an estimated 80% of your skin’s aging, this according to research dermatologists.
With that in mind, protecting your skin from ultra-harmful UV rays should be among one of your top skincare and beauty goals each day.
The first, and hopefully most obvious, step to protecting your skin is to wear sunscreen. There are so many sunscreens that work effectively and can be used on a daily basis, but you have to know what to look for. We have never understood why, but some sunscreens do not protect from both UVA and UVB rays. If you not sure about the sunscreen you are using, make sure that the label contains the phrase ‘broad spectrum.’ It should also be at least 15 SPF. Plan on applying that multiple times per day if you are outside regularly.
Another way to ensure you are wearing sunscreen each day is to use a daily moisturizing product that contains sunscreen. It is very common to find a moisturizer with at least SPF 15. One beauty blogger admits that she uses a high end daily moisturizing product from Fleuresse followed by a leading sunscreen and has noticed a large difference in her skin’s natural glow.
One thing that you should be paying attention to if you are not already are the moles on your body. They are directly related to skin issues such as skin cancer. Almost all dermatologists offer a comprehensive mapping of your body to catalog each mole you have so that you can accurately watch for changes and growths in each mole. Doing so will allow you to identify and potentially skin cancer in its earliest phases. If you have even the smallest concern, it is recommended you visit a dermatologist.
Another often overlooked region of your body are your eyes. They are sensitive to the sun and UV rays, so wearing sunglasses is optimal for long-term eye health. In addition to this, though, sunglasses help to protect the skin surrounding your eyes. That area of skin is among the thinnest on our body, so it much more susceptible to damage from the sun.
Going along with sunglasses, wearing a wide-brimmed sun hat will do wonders for protecting the skin on your face and neck from the sun. Yes, a beautiful sun hat is a definite fashion statement but is also one of the few fashion accessories that are just as much functional as it is timelessly attractive and flattering.
Finally, pouring over your diet and analyzing it for SPF boosting foods will make a difference in your skin’s health as well. If you were unaware of this gem, there are superfoods that have been recently heralded as skin-enhancing foods that naturally increase your natural UV defenses. The best thing about some of these foods is just how delicious they are. The most popular of this list of superfoods include tomatoes, dark chocolate, watermelon, pomegranate and fatty fish. The next time you find yourself feeling guilty for having a bite of dark chocolate, just remind yourself it is for your skin’s protection and health.
Lately, there has been a small movement to start covering up all of your skin prior to going out in the sun in an attempt to minimize damage. While that is quite extreme, the same level of determination should be taken when protecting your skin using the above tips. Put these into practice and enjoy your next vacation in the sun!