I don’t believe anyone should ever venture outside without wearing some kind of skin protection against the sun’s damaging UVA/UVB rays. Read this article and it may help save your own life. Share it or re-tweet/Facebook the link, and you might help to save many lives! While many believe what they can’t see, can’t hurt them, If you think you don’t need sun protection, you are dead wrong.
The Deadly Facts:
Overexposure to the sun’s rays will not just age your skin more quickly, a skin cancer about the size of a dime can kill you!
- Skin cancer and melanoma account for about 50% of all types of cancers diagnosed combined.
- Skin cancer is one of the more preventable types of cancer.
- More than 90% of skin cancer is caused by excessive exposure to the sun.
- Each hour, 1 person dies from skin cancer.
This may sound pretty scary. Now that I live in Florida I see a literal line of people (and not necessarily elderly) coming out of the doctor’s office after having surgery to cut away skin cancers. The good news is that there are pleasant multi-tasking moisturizers and other sun protection products. They can help protect your skin along with basic SPF products.
The Basics of SPF:
“SPF” stands for “sun protection factor.” It measures how long you can stay exposed to the sun without burning. An SPF of 15 extends your protection 15 times longer. However, wearing a product with SPF 15 isn’t a substitute for sensible sun bathing. These products, even the waterproof ones, won’t last on your skin indefinitely, nor can you layer two products each with SPF 15 together to give you a higher SPF protection.
If you plan to be out in the sun for any length of time, use the highest SPF you can handle (the minimum recommended is SPF 30) and re-apply it every two hours. You also need to use a lot more of the product than you may think you need. A couple of tablespoons per body per application (about the amount that will fill a shot glass) and a heaping spoonful for the face, is the minimum.
What Is Broad Spectrum/Water-Resistant?
Under FDA rules, “Broad-spectrum” means that the product passes the FDA’s tests for both UVB and UVA. Previously, only UVB protection was tested, which is where the SPF value comes from. Look for ‘broad spectrum’ on the label. No sunblock is waterproof. However, the FDA allows sunscreen products to be labeled as “water-resistant (40minutes)” or “extra water-resistant (80minutes)” as relevant. A product must be applied and re-applied at least every two hours, especially if swimming or sweating. Look for the information panel on the package for detailed information.
Self Tanners Do Not Protect You:
IMPORTANT: self-tanners and bronzers make you look tan, but your skin is not protected and will burn, unless that bronzer has SPF protection built into it. And, unless the product says it has SPF of 15 or higher, you will need to use an additional sun screen to protect your skin, no matter how tan it looks.
Sun Protecton 101: HERE’S HOW TO DO IT:
1.Apply a UVA and UVB sunscreen (broad-spectrum) with an SPF of 30 or higher
2. Check the directions — you may have to apply it 15- 30 minutes before going outdoors, Check expiration dates, Products that are outdated, can lose their effectiveness.
2.Use enough (see above for recommendations). Completely coat all exposed areas of your face, head and body, ears, neck, nose, shoulders, back of the hands and front/back of your arms and legs. Cover your lips with sun protective lip balm or sunscreen.
3. Apply sunscreen properly: completely coat all exposed areas of your face, head and body, ears, neck, nose, shoulders, back of the hands, and front/back of your arms and legs. Cover your lips with sun protective lip balm or sunscreen.
4. Apply sunscreen even on a cloudy or cool day. Those UVA/UVB rays are still out there. The sun’s rays also reflect through windows, so consider that when sitting near a window or in your car. Reapply it if you’ve been sweating, swimming, or some of the protection might have rubbed off on a towel, or clothing.
5. Daily Protection – sun protection isn’t just for the beach. If you refuse to wear SPF during the workday, at least consider wearing moisturizers and other cosmetics that have SPF in them.
6. Stay out of the sun during its strongest hours. Seek shade whenever possible, and cover yourself with a hat, long sleeves, or an umbrella. If you won’t do this, be sure to wear enough sunblock (see above).
7. Wear a broad-brimmed hat (preferably with a back flap) to help protect your face, ears, and neck.
8. Protect your eyes with UV-protective sunglasses. This will help prevent wrinkles, and also, potential eye damage.
9 . Wear sun-protective clothing (UPF 50) or at least long pants and long-sleeved shirts as often as possible.
10: Most sun exposure, and damage, happens when you’re just walking around, sitting in by a sunny window, or sitting in your car. It’s sunny in the Wintertime as well as in the Summer. Protect yourself from the sun all the time, not just at the beach or pool.
11. Read the many advicesisters’ SPF stories and select some products that you like and that will work best for you.