Even when it is cloudy outside, even if you work indoors, you should be wearing a sunscreen DAILY! It may sound extreme, but UVA rays account for up to 95% of the UV radiation reaching the earth’s surface, and can penetrate clouds and glass. These UVA rays play a major part in photodamage and skin ageing. UVB rays are the chief cause of skin reddening and sunburn, damage which can also lead to premature skin ageing. Both UVA and UVB rays have the potential to cause skin cancers.
For this reason, it is really important to choose a sunscreen that is ‘broad spectrum’. Broad Spectrum sunscreens are designed to protect against both UVB and UVA rays. A conventional sunscreen that has an SPF rating only and does not mention the term “Broad Spectrum” may block very little UVA radiation relative to the nominal SPF.
Here are the top five reasons why applying sunscreen should be a daily habit year round:
- It Protects Your Skin from UV Rays: The depletion of the ozone layer has increased our risk of sun damage from harmful UV rays. Sunscreen blocks these rays, greatly reducing the likelihood of sunburn. Look for products like SPF (Sun Protection Factor) of at least 15 (some doctors recommend nothing below 30), and use each and every day. For full body coverage you’ll want to apply about an ounce.
- It Lowers Your Skin Cancer Risk: Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer.By applying sunscreen each day, you cut your risk of contracting skin cancers in half.
- It Prevents Premature Aging of the Skin: Sun damage from UV rays causes photoaging of the skin, which is characterized by a thick, leathery look; discoloration; and a breakdown of collagen, which contributes to lines, sagging and wrinkles. Studies show that those below age 55 who apply sunscreen regularly have 24 percent less chance of developing these signs of aging than those who don’t.
- It Helps Maintain an Even Skin Tone: Sunscreen helps prevent discoloration and dark spots from sun damage, helping you maintain a smoother and more even skin tone.
- Your Chances of Skin Cancer are Higher if Your Hair is Red: Scientists used to think the reason for this increased risk was due to the fair skin tone of redheads. In 2013, however, researchers discovered the MC1R gene mutation which creates red hair and fair skin. This mutation also creates a cancer causing pathway which, when exposed to UV radiation, promotes a genetic propensity towards cancer.
When used daily as directed this skin anti-ageing must-have works to help prevent the signs of premature ageing, including the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, uneven texture and loss of firmness, leaving the skin looking more youthful and radiant.