Summer is Here

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TIME TO TALK SUNSCREENS

But before I do I just want to say one thing. Tanning is the skin’s response to DNA damage which is irreversible! There is no such thing as a healthy tan. The reason the skin looks less wrinkled with a tan is because the damage caused to cells temporarily causes swelling which temporarily reduces the appearance of wrinkles.

Sunscreens can be broadly divided into 2 groups:-

Physical sunscreens and Chemical sunscreens

PHYSICAL SUNSCREENS work by making a physical block between the skin and the sun. A T-shirt or a rash suit could be considered a physical sunscreen. When talking about creams there are only 2 ingredients to look for Titanium dioxide and Zinc oxide. The problem with Titanium is that a lot of people are allergic to it. The problem with Zinc is that historically it used to leave an opaque white film (remember the whiteout we used to use on our lips when we skied?) nowadays look for micronised zinc oxide which doesn’t leave a white film.

CHEMICAL SUNSCREENS work by absorbing the rays of the sun into themselves. This is now not thought to be a good idea! There are a couple that are in the recommended catogory Anthelios by la -Roche posey the key ingredient is Ecamsule (Mexoryl SX) Actinica by Galderma is new and the studies show a reduction in incidence of sun induced lesions after only applying once a day!

UVA long wave causes Ageing A=Ageing

UVB short wave causes Burning and skin cancer B=Bad/Burning

Remember that these rays can penetrate through clouds on a grey day but more importantly through the glass windows of a car and the windows of an aeroplane where you are even more exposed than when on the ground.

I NEVER sit in a window seat and pull the blinds down whenever possible.

SPF testing is a measure of protection against UVB However it is important to make sure that your sunscreen has what we call a “broad spectrum” protection against UVA and UVB

WHAT DO THE NUMBERS MEAN?

    • SPF 15 filters out 93% of the UVB rays
    • SPF 30 filters out 97% of the UVB rays
    • SPF 50 filters out 98% of the UVB rays

Numbers higher than SPF50 should not be used!

WHAT I DO

      1. I try to stay indoors between midday and 4pm
      2. I wear a long sleeved rash suit and broad rimed hat to swim in (yes I do!) check out www.orrlebarbrown.com
      3. I reapply sunscreen every 2 to 4 hours
      4. I reapply sunscreen after swimming
      5. I like a sunscreen brand called Elta MD (we sell this at our clinic)
      6. I always wear a broad rimmed hat
      7. I wear long sleeves and long dresses as much as possible.
      8. I do not rely on the sun for a source of Vitamin D I take Vitamin D 10,000IU every day in an oil based form
      9. I don’t wear cheap sunglasses. Invest in a high quality pair with wrap around lenses to protect eyes from wrinkles
      10. I ALWAYS fake it . My favourites are lancome Flash bronzer gel for face, James Read mousse for body and fake bake airbrush spray tan for my feet

Frances