Growing up, we have all heard time and time again, to apply sunscreen before going outdoors! And if you are like us, we only remember to put sunscreen on during warm or sunny days, when, sunscreen should be worn daily, despite the weather.
Sunlight consists of two types of harmful rays that can reach the surface of the earth- UVA and UVB rays. Overexposure to either type can negatively impact your skin and even cause skin cancer. Did you know that harmful UV rays can penetrate your skin, even on the cloudiest days? UVA rays are known as ‘aging rays’ and can prematurely age your skin by causing wrinkles or age spots. UVB rays are known as ‘burning rays’ and are the primary cause of sunburns. Even just 5-10 minutes of unprotected sun exposure can be harmful to sensitive skin areas such as your face, ears, and neck.
Sun-damaged skin can appear in several ways, and by knowing these warning symptoms you can help protect and prevent further damage to your skin:
- Dry skin- if your skin appears to be dry, flakey, and more wrinkled than other areas of skin on your body, you may have been spending too much time in the sun. Dryness is also one of the more common causes of irritated or itchy skin.
- Sunburn- is one of the most obvious symptoms of sun-damage. Mild sunburns can be painful and cause the skin to turn red and highly sensitive to touch. In most cases, you will see a clear boundary line where you protected your skin, either with clothing or SPF, and the skin you ‘burned’. There are also more severe symptoms that can occur if exposed to direct sunlight too long like, painful blisters even nausea and dizziness.
- Actinic keratosis- can appear as small bumps that feels like sandpaper or a persistent patch of flakey, peeling skin. The effected area of skin frequently turns pink, yellow, red or has a brownish tint. Actinic keratosis rarely itches but can cause that area of skin to be more tender.
- Long-term changes to your skin’s collagen- fine lines, wrinkles, a thickened skin texture or easy bruised skin are all symptoms of sun-exposed areas impacted by collagen loss. We commonly see this are the eyes and mouth area on the face, as well as the back of our hands and forearms.
You are probably wondering, what is the best sunscreen to use to protect against harmful rays? And the answer is: any sunscreen that you will apply every day. Just make sure it offers broad-spectrum (UVA and UVB) protection, has an SPF of 30 or more and is water-resistant. We recommend using Sukin SPF 30 Sheer Touch Face Sunscreen because it utilizes natural minerals like Zinc Oxide to provide broad spectrum protection and is available in 3 shades. Sukin’s new SPF excludes the use of oxybenzone and octinoxate, making it the perfect Reef Safe, non-greasy SPF! You never have to worry about our Sheer Touch SPF leaving a white cast and it’s designed for daily wear, regardless of the weather. Containing a natural, antioxidant rich blend of Rosehip Oil, Green Tea and Cucumber to also nourish the skin.