Protect Your Skin This Summer!

woman-applying-sunscreen-sunscreenAs hot and sizzling summer months quickly approach, do you have the proper sunscreen yet? We all know we need sunscreen and that skin cancer is a very real threat out there, especially for those with pale and sensitive skin. There are so many sunscreens out there now to choose from: how do you know which one is right for you?

First, always opt for a sunscreen with both UV-A and UV-B protection. This way, you’ll protect your skin from ultraviolet-B (UV-B) rays, which cause sunburns and skin damage, as well as ultraviolet-A (UV-A) rays that increase your risk for skin cancer.

Next, it doesn’t matter whether your preference is a spray, lotion, or gel, be sure you pick one with SPF 30 or higher. The SPF in your sunscreen absorbs and reflects the sun’s rays so they don’t burn or damage your skin.

But keep in mind, you need to keep re-applying. Just because you choose an SPF 80, doesn’t mean it will last you all day! SPF 30 really is the highest that you need to go.

Your skin can take up to a half-hour to absorb sunscreen. So, plan ahead and apply sunscreen 30 minutes before going outside.

And, don’t skimp on the sunscreen. “Most people don’t apply enough sunscreen,” Chon says. “For sunscreen to do its job effectively, you should apply one ounce of sunscreen – the size of a golf ball – to every part of your body exposed to the sun.” That includes your ears, feet and back of the neck. Then re-apply sunscreen every two hours, unless you’re using a spray sunscreen or swimming or sweating a lot. Then you need to apply more often.

Just because you’re using sunscreen properly, doesn’t mean that is all you need to protect your beautiful skin from the blistering sun. Wear some lip balm with SPF 30 or higher, grab a hat and sunglasses, or check out some sun protective clothing.

You also can protect your skin by seeking shade from the sun from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. That’s when the sun’s harmful UV rays are strongest.

“Remember, no sunscreen provides 100% protection from the sun,” Chon says. “But by taking these added precautions and taking the time to apply – and reapply – sunscreen properly, you can greatly curb your chances for sunburns and skin cancer.”

Some information courtesy of MD Anderson Cancer Center.

© Copyright 2011  Allison Stuart Kaplan  www.Askinyourface.com LLC

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