Number 1 advice: Wear Sunscreen!

If there is one advice that I can give to people regarding health and beauty is this: Wear sunscreen!

It is honestly the best thing you can do for your skin.

What happens if you don’t wear sunscreen

There is an infamous picture of a truck driver with over 20 years of driving in the sun without sunscreen on one side of their face. This picture was published by the New England Journal of medicine.

The damage to the Truck driver’s skin was caused by Ultraviolet rays. There are different types of Ultraviolet rays (UVA, UVB & UVC) but ultimately the Ultraviolet rays from the sun destroy the skin’s elastic fibres causing deeper wrinkles, causes sun-spots, causes damage to eyes, skin discoloration, and increase risk of skin cancer.  

The benefits of sunscreen

The first is obviously reducing your risk of sun damage, and skin cancer leading to better skin in the long term. The second is preventing sunburns. Sunburns hurt more than it looks. I won’t put pictures because I can feel the physical pain from seeing them. It’s no walk in the park.

Myths regarding sunscreen/ sun protection

  • The first is darker skin people don’t need sunscreen. You heard of black don’t crack and other similar phrases. Although, it is true those with a higher melanin count have higher protection against UV but not by much. Darker skin people are still affected by the negative effects of UV rays such as sunburn. Below is a funny comedian clip about this:
    https://youtu.be/012dGJ2gbEQ?t=246

  • You don’t need sunscreen on cloudy or overcast days. The UV rays still penetrate through as clouds only filter out the sunlight. So, wear sunscreen those days even if people give you crap about doing so (speaking from personal experience).

  • Cosmetics with SPF protection is enough. Although it is great to have your makeup have SPF, they are known to cause some flashbacks when taking a photograph. It’s good practice to wear sunscreen underneath your makeup, especially if you are out for longer periods of time.

It doesn’t matter what race, gender or age you are. UV rays do not discriminate, everyone needs sunscreen.

What type of sunscreen should I get?

The higher the SPF protection the better, but in general above 30 for your face and at least 30 for your body. Find one with broad-spectrum protection and if possible waterresistant. I personally prefer cream sunscreen as you can get greater coverage and spreadability (if that even is a word).

How you should put sunscreen on

The video below is sun a great piece on the often missed areas when applying sunscreen.  

Sunscreen should also be applied routinely if you are going to be out in the sun all day and put it on the areas that will be exposed.

Personal experience

I’m in my 30s now and I’ve been putting sunscreen consistently throughout my 20s and a bit in my late teens (I wished I’ve done it earlier). Often I’m complimented on my skin and people think I’m younger than my age and the youngest out of my siblings (Which is quite funny as I am the second oldest). Although I do concede some of it may be genetics, I largely attribute my skin’s good condition to sunscreen.

Let me know your personal experience with wearing/not wearing sunscreen!

  • Brenner, M., & Hearing, V. J. (2008). The protective role of melanin against UV damage in human skin. Photochemistry and photobiology, 84(3), 539-549.
  • How Sunlight and Ultraviolet Radiation Affect Us. (2018, October 23). Retrieved from https://www.sunsaferx.com/health-and-wellness/how-sunlight-and-ultraviolet-radiation-affect-us/
  • Sun Exposure, Skin Cancer, and Other Sun Damage. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.webmd.com/g00/beauty/sun-exposure-skin-cancer?i10c.ua=2&i10c.encReferrer=aHR0cHM6Ly93d3cuZ29vZ2xlLmNvbS8=&i10c.dv=20
  • A. (n.d.). Sunscreen FAQs. Retrieved from https://www.aad.org/media/stats/prevention-and-care/sunscreen-faqs

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