In countries with the four seasons, summer is a time to head out for some outdoor fun and beach time. For people living in areas with a tropical climate, exposure to the sun’s heat is almost a daily affair. But the one thing that everyone is cognizant of before stepping out to enjoy or face the sun is the importance of sun defense by applying sunblock. The deleterious effects of ultraviolet rays from the sun are universally known, especially in causing wrinkles and age spots on our faces. A graver consequence of excessive and unprotected sun exposure is skin cancer – the most common form of all cancers in many parts of the world.
Studies have shown that using topical sunblock alone is not enough to provide adequate and reliable all-day protection for the exposed skin. Furthermore, most people only apply a quarter of the recommended level and therefore will get limited shield against sun damage. Even if sufficiently applied, it can wear off after some time due to sweating or rubbing against clothing. Also, incidental exposure to the sun – versus unavoidable exposure through sports and recreation occurs 80% of the time and can leave skin vulnerable to damage.
Power Of UV Rays
While sunscreens with high SPF (Sun Protection Factor) definitely help in providing protection against harmful UVA and UVB rays, they are not a complete block-off. Sunburn is caused by UVB while UVA is the culprit that causes photo-aging. UVB radiation burns the skin’s upper layers, causing redness when you’re outdoors without adequate protection. Studies on UVA have shown that it can pass through sunscreen, penetrate the skin’s layers right down to the tissues underneath and destroy cellular DNA. Hence, although UVA does not cause burns, it is can lead to premature skin aging because it damages collagen and elastin fibers, causing red thread veins, fine lines and wrinkles to form.
Sunblock And Sunscreen: Sun Defense
Yes, the two are different although often used interchangeably. A topical sunblock shields the skin by forming a barrier between the skin and harmful UVB rays, reflecting and scattering their light. Sunscreen, on the other hand, is formulated to protect against UVA. It penetrates and absorbs UVA rays before they reach and damage the skin’s dermal layer. Thus, to fully protect the skin from UVA and UVB radiation, get a broad-spectrum product that offers protection against both. To boost your skin’s sun defense, you can take dietary supplements such as Ceramiracle’s INVI-SUN, a one-a-day formula boasting clinically studied ingredients with photo-protective, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
Sun Care Best Practices
Although most people use sunblocks for sun defense, few are actually aware of the correct way to slather sunblock on their skin for optimum protective benefits. Here are some common mistakes to avoid and best practices to follow the next time you apply sunblock lotion before heading outdoors. 1. Use sunblock of at least 30 SPF half an hour before sun exposure. 2. Apply a generous amount. People usually apply too little sunscreen, which reduces its efficacy. 3. Apply to all parts of the body and not just the face which many habitually do. 4. If you’re out the whole day, reapply every two hours. As mentioned earlier, sunblock can wear off after some time leaving, the skin unguarded against sun damage.