We love the sun. Who doesn’t? But at the same time we know that sun exposure can be one of the main factors for damaging the skin and accelerating the skin’s ageing process. So we’ve put together a three minute guide to the jargon, myths and must-dos for enjoying the sun safely… and protecting your number one asset all the way.
SPF (Sun Protection Factor) refers to the ability of the sunscreen to absorb UV (Ultra Violet) rays. SPF is measured by timing how much longer it will take for the skin to burn than without it. For example, wearing SPF 15 means that it should take 15 times longer to burn according to your specific skin type.
Some sunscreens claim to be waterproof or sweat proof. In reality, ‘water/sweat/perspiration resistant’ usually means the sunscreen offers SPF protection for only 40 minutes of water exposure.
Whilst ‘very water resistant’ usually indicates 80 minutes of protection. So it’s best to help defend against water exposure, to reapply the product regularly.
BROAD SPECTRUM. THIS. IS. KEY.
The sun’s radiation contains both UVA and UVB rays:
UVB rays cause burning
UVA rays cause wrinkling and ageing but do NOT cause burning, reddening, pain or irritation
Both UVA and UVB rays cause cancer
Currently, some sunscreens only protect against UVB rays rather than providing ‘full or broad spectrum’ cover – ie UVB and UVA. When choosing a sunscreen, look for one which provides ‘broad spectrum’ protection, ie defends against UVA and UVB rays.
FREQUENCY OF APPLICATION
To ensure you’re getting full protection from the moment you step outdoors, apply your sunscreen half an hour beforehand and then whilst in the sun and reapply regularly. Also get into the habit of applying sunscreen first thing, during your morning skincare regime. And adding mineral makeup, with its natural sunscreen protection, is also recommended.
INTELLIGENT FACE PROTECTION
Even those with skin that doesn’t appear to have been damaged still need to protect their faces. UV damage sets in beyond the naked eye. The sun is good for you but we do encourage our customers to enjoy the sun in a responsible, safe way:
Use sunscreen every day, even when it’s cloudy and not just when you are on holiday.
Whatever your age or skin type, use sun protection on areas of the body which are regularly exposed – particularly the face and hands.
In winter in the UK, SPF 20 is usually adequate, whilst in summer, we suggest a minimum SPF of 30 or higher, depending on your skin type, and if you are outdoors and exposed to the sun on a regular basis.
Brown pigment (aptly named as a tan) is nature’s own protective ingredient and your body’s attempt to protect itself against DNA damage. Burning the skin when you can see red pigment is a sign of injury and DNA damage which can lead to mutations and skin cancer.
Try and stay in the shade between 11am and 3pm.
When the sun is really strong don’t rely on sunscreen alone, wear light clothes that cover your arms and legs, a hat and sunglasses that block UV light to protect your eyes.
Never burn; sunburn causes permanent damage.
We don’t want to create the impression that the sun is our enemy! This guide is to share how to be protected from the harmful effects of the sun whilst also utilising all the good effects to optimise your health. Importantly, the sun provides our bodies with Vitamin D.
BY THE WAY, WE *LOVE* VITAMIN D
Crucial for the absorption and metabolism of calcium and phosphorous.
An immune system regulator.
An important way to arm the immune system against disorders, such as the common cold.
Linked to maintaining a healthy body weight.
Reduces the severity and frequency of asthma symptoms.
Reduces the risk of developing multiple sclerosis.
A key role in helping the brain to keep working well in later life.
Reduces the risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis in women.
One of our body’s main protections against damage from low levels of radiation.
Plays a role in biological processes in sperm and ovary cells and may affect levels of sex hormones.
People with adequate levels of Vitamin D have a significantly lower risk of developing cancer, particularly melanoma. Vitamin D deficiency was found to be prevalent in cancer patients regardless of their overall nutritional status.
So there you have it; simple things to consider to cherish your number one asset.
BOOK A SKIN CHECK-IN
Find you Saks Beauty salon book in for a complimentary consultation with one of our skin experts and we’ll see how your skin’s faring. It’s never too early or too late. Love Saks xx