The sun really isn’t your skin’s friend. You may have heard about the mood-boosting benefits of vitamin D from the sun’s rays, but these rays actually end up doing more harm than good when it comes to your skin. Here’s why it’s important to wear sunscreen year-round, especially on your face.
It’s important to remember that the sun doesn’t stop shining in the winter. Even though it’s colder outside, UV rays are still prominent and can still affect your skin. Also keep in mind that UV rays can penetrate through clouds and windows, and can even reflect off snow and ice, making sunscreen even more essential.
Sunscreen usually contains a combination of inorganic and organic ingredients, such as zinc oxide and oxybenzone. These ingredients either reflect or absorb UVA and UVB rays, preventing them from reaching the skin. SPF (sun protection factor) refers to the number of minutes your skin is protected above your usual burn time. If you usually burn in 10 minutes, an SPF 15 lotion with provide 25 minutes of protection.
The Skin Cancer Foundation recommends reapplying sunscreen, regardless of its strength, every two hours, using an ounce to cover the entire body. A “broad spectrum” sunscreen is best for UVA and UVB protection. For your face, consider a tinted moisturizer with SPF to offer a subtle layer of makeup to disguise uneven skin tone or pigmentation while preventing any further sun damage.
Did you know that a suntan is your skin’s way of protecting itself from damage? Skin reacts to sun exposure by increasing melanin levels, resulting in brown pigmentation or discoloration. This discoloration can fade to an uneven skin tone or red splotches and broken blood vessels.
While darker skin tones may have greater levels of skin-protecting melanin, you can still be affected by ultraviolet rays, causing wrinkles and uneven pigmentation. Melasma, a skin concern that causes gray-brown patches, is also a common side effect of overexposure to sunlight in men and women with darker skin tones.
If you are already experiencing the effects of premature aging due to damage caused by the sun, you can reduce the appearance of this common skin concern through Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) skin rejuvenation treatments. This procedure delivers light through the skin, which generates heat when it’s absorbed by the targeted tissue below. This helps to reduce premature signs of aging, including sun spots and melasma, for a brighter, younger-looking complexion. The best part is that it’s a comfortable treatment and there’s no downtime required!
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