You know that you should be using sunscreen every day to protect your skin (sun damage is cumulative over time, not just during the summer), but is your sunscreen doing everything that it can for your skin? Here are some tips/recommendations to get the most out of your sun protection!
Use it Correctly
The most common application problems are: not applying enough, not reapplying or not applying it to all areas of exposed skin.
APPLY ENOUGH: Dermatologists recommend applying 1 oz for the body per application if you are showing a fair amount of skin. If you are wearing long sleeves and pants, obviously you will apply less, but for the typical person wearing short sleeves & shorts or a bathing suit when spending the day outside, you should be using about an ounce (= a shot glass worth). An application tip is to apply your sunscreen in 2 layers. This also tends to help ensure better coverage.
REAPPLY: remember to reapply sunscreen every 2 hours or anytime after toweling off, sweating or getting out of the water. Sunscreens may be water-resistant, but none are water proof. Try using the timer or reminders on your phone to help you remember to reapply.
APPLY TO ALL EXPOSED (or potentially exposed) AREAS OF SKIN: Commonly forgotten areas include the back of the neck, ears, scalp (if applicable), back of the hands, and tops of the feet. Also, if you plan to take off a wrap, sweater, shirt, etc. don’t forget to apply sunscreen to those areas.
Product Recommendations: Neutrogena UltraSheer® Sunscreens, Bella Derma Oil-Free Moisturizing Sunscreen, Multi-Protection Broad Spectrum SPF 50
There is significant research that indicates that the topical application of antioxidants to skin fights sun & other free radical damage. Basically, the antioxidants keep the free radicals from harming your DNA and causing mutant cells. Sunscreen is still important because it prevents those molecules from getting to your cells in the first place (physical sunscreen by reflecting the UV rays away, chemical sunscreen by being itself destroyed, instead of your skin cells), but adding a layer of an antioxidant serum or lotion under your sunscreen can add an extra line of defense for your skin. There are also sunscreens available today that have antioxidants (such as green tea polyphenols or beta-carotene) in their formulation so it’s still just one step in the morning!
Product Recommendations: BellaDerma Green Tea Antioxidant Moisturizing Lotion, BellaDerma Triple Antioxidant Serum
Add an Anti-Aging Benefit
Some studies indicate that UV rays are responsible for up to 90% of visible aging of the skin (especially wrinkles, fine lines, age spots, volume loss and skin texture). Yes, you read that right – up to 90%! And no, all of your sun damage is not accumulated by age 18. Sun Safe habits are important no matter what age you are. But let’s assume you did start late but you are getting better about applying your sunscreen. Is there anything you can do to further boost your sunscreen’s anti-aging benefits? Yes! You can apply your anti-aging serums underneath your sunscreen, or get a combination product that features peptides, vitamins & other anti-aging ingredients so that you can be preventing & reversing skin aging at the same time!
Product Recommendations: Intellishade Tinted Moisturizer with Sunscreen, Multi-Protection Broad Spectrum SPF 50