Staying Safe In The Sun
Story by Cheri Woodsmall
It’s HOT outside. We have reached the peak of the summer season and spending a lot of time in backyard pools, at the lake and working in the garden pruning and watering. It’s more important than ever to protect yourself from the sun’s powerful and harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays. Overexposure to UV rays lead to sun damage, accelerated skin aging and skin cancer. So here are a few great tips to stay safe this summer!
- Broad-spectrum: Provides 100% UVA and UVB protection.
- SPF (Sun Protection Factor): For optimal protection stick with at least 30 SPF.
- Water Resistant: This doesn’t mean waterproof! Protection is usually 40-80 minutes but remember it comes off when you towel off! Don’t forget your ears, nose, lips, neck, hairline and tops of feet!
- Lather up 30 minutes before venturing out and then every 2 hours, more if you’re splashing around.
- It does Expire! Sunscreens lose their magic over time so check the date before applying.
Protect Those Baby Blues
Your eyes need protection from the sun’s harmful UV rays too! Before you don on those chic sunglasses, a “UV 400” rating or stated “100% UVA/UVB protection” will offer the best protection. And don’t be fooled by the darkness of the lenses, it’s not a good indicator of UV protection.
The sun’s UV rays are most intense between 10 a.m.- 4 p.m. so seek out that umbrella or tree. Don’t forget water and sand reflect the sun’s rays, so lather up and put on those sunglasses. A good rule of thumb is to find a shady spot whenever your shadow appears to be shorter than you are.
Check Out Those Spots!
Examine your skin every month for anything new or changing and see your physician every year for a professional skin exam. An annual skin exam should be as routine and preventative as going to the dentist. Also check out SPOT Skin Cancer at SpotSkinCancer.org to learn more about protecting your skin.
Tan in a Can
Spray tans and tan towels are a great alternative to get that golden glow. Remember, a spray tan is NOT a base tan, so you need to lather up before you hit the beach.
Check Out the App
Wonder how intense the rays are where you’re at? Check out EPA’s SunWise UV Index app to find out if you are at risk for overexposure to the sun.
Why not embrace your natural skin tone this summer? No amount of tanning will ever actually change your skin tone, so try finding new ways to feel good about you. A new lipstick or top that complements your skin can work wonders for brightening up your look. Love your skin this season and all year long by taking steps to protect it, and share this blog post with your friends, family, and coworkers. The battle against skin damage is year-round.