Sunday, 20 January 2013

Why I wear Sunscreen everyday

sun down by michael david adams
Fabulous sun protecting hat but don`t forget your décolletage!
If you have yet to hear everyone yammer on about how important sunscreen is I will now add to the chorus. Born with carrot top orange hair (now blond thank goodness), I possess that sort of ghostly pallor that make tanning bed worshippers quake with terror. And no I don’t want to spray tan. I think fair skin, like any other skin when well looked after, is classy and beautiful.  Every makeup artist on the planet seems to want to pile on a small truckload of bronzer on me despite the fact that I basically don’t tan ever, naturally. With the red-head skin, I turn a delightful shade of lobster and then peel back to albino, sun damage irrevocably done. So I am easy to sway on the fact that sunscreen is probably a good idea.

Pretty much.
People without the pallor problem seem fairly lacks on the sunscreen front even though they hear over and over why it’s bad. It is because this “summer glow” keeps being endorsed by the media. It makes you appear slimmer, hotter, better, faster, or whatever the “in” adjective is this season. Ultimately endorsing a fake tan, or real tan, sells more product than embracing your natural colour. I think in a few years’ time, we will look back on this whole tanning business like we do smoking; as something people did that they thought was cool that’s actually really bad and like, cancer-causing and stuff. Go-figure.
                So here is a list of completely vain list of reasons why wearing sunscreen, daily not just when you are on the beach, is a good idea:

Most skin conditions that cause you to look “old” are related

Wrinkles, dark spots, sun or liver spots, sagging etc. are all created/made worse by UV exposure. A lot of women don’t see the sun damage until they hit menopause and then freak out in a panic, so be diligent now and you will have one less thing to look forward to later. If you have these already, UV only makes it worse, breaking down collagen, and bringing out existing damage. If you are acne prone, the already damaged skin cells when exposed to light can cause a premature dark scar.  

Anything you are using to “Improve” you skin is making you more at risk.

Most skin treatments to improve tone, texture, and wrinkles make you more susceptible to getting sun damage. Retinol (and its derivatives), Glycolic acid, lactic acid, salicylic acid, vitamin C and vitamin A all cause skin greater photosensitivity i.e. making you burn faster and giving you more sun damage. Most of the time, people use these things to improve conditions that were caused by sun damage in the first place like dark spots. If you use something to get rid of dark spots like Glycolic acid and then go out in the sun without sunscreen, your dark spots will probably get worse not better. Then, you will think I am a crackpot for ever recommending the glycolics to you for your dark spots even though you obviously missed my warning about the sunscreen, or thought my warning didn’t somehow apply to you. A lot of creams come in a “day” version like the Neostrata that have a sun screen in them already so no excuses. Although if you are going to be spending the whole day outside, like at the beach you probably will want more sunscreen of a higher SPF to reapply. Or if you are still going to ignore my warnings, just quit trying to “improve” your skin tone because it’s not going to work you might as well save yourself some skin damage.
And no your make-up does not count

Just because your makeup has an SPF 15 or whatever doesn’t mean you are actually getting enough. Like any sunscreen, you would have to apply a significant amount to actually get that amount of protection. Unless you apply your makeup with a trowel, I suggest another form of sunscreen. At a sun clinic I was told that a lot of liquid foundations applied normally only gave an SPF of about 2, which is less than a “tanning” sunscreen level. It’s better than a kick in the pants but not by much.

Sunscreen is not limited to Coppertone, and does not have to suck

Sunscreens have come a long way in the last few years. It is possible to get sunscreen that is not sticky, goopy, white, fragranced, and that won’t make you break out. We have the power! Go actually look at your options, people are always surprised. Shaka type sunscreens are super fluid and light and go easily under make-up. There are also a lot of moisturisers and great anti-ageing products that contain sunscreen so you can wear sunscreen without putting another product on your face. I like this highly boring looking, but highly effective one from La Roche Posay: La Roche-posay Hydraphase UV Intense Hydration Fluid with SPF 30 Sunscreen, 1.69-Ounce: Beauty (24 CAD) found on Polyvore
This contains hyaluronic acid too! from one of my favourite sensitive skin brands

So Have I converted you?
Do you wear sunscreen everyday?
 What do you use to get you sun protection? 

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