Originally published on May 1, 2013. Updated on 5/8/2017.
With summer less than two months away, days are getting warmer and more time is being spent outside. Gardens are being planted, children are playing outdoors, walks with our pets are lengthened, and outdoor sports schedules are getting busy.
While this time in the sun can be tremendously enjoyable, it can also be quite dangerous if proper care isn’t taken to protect your skin. This month, we wanted to provide you with some tips for optimal skin care during the warmest spring and summer months.
Protecting yourself from skin damage
Think most of your wrinkles will come with old age? As a matter of fact, that’s hardly the case. 90 percent of wrinkles are caused by sun exposure. Our estheticians adamantly stress the importance of skin protection with all of their clients who seek customized skin care treatments and facial therapies.
“My summer tips?” asked our esthetician. “My sunny day tips are SPF, SPF, SPF, a cute beach hat, protective clothing, sunglasses, breaks in the shade, and SPF!”
She’s right. The Center for Disease Control recommends using a sunscreen with a minimum SPF of 15, and our esthetician stresses the importance of purchasing sunscreen containing zinc oxide and/or titanium oxide.
At The Plastic Surgery Group’s Skin Care Center, our licensed estheticians recommend SkinMedica®’s Daily Physical Defense™ SPF 30. It’s oil-free, fragrance-free, and ultra-sheer for all skin types. Zinc oxide has been shown to control and reduce oil, redness and inflammation.
Remember to apply your sunscreen every two hours, especially between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m., when the sun’s rays are the most hazardous. Whether it’s sunny or cloudy, UV rays are dangerous – do not be fooled by cloudy skies. If you’re wearing a cover-up to the pool, remember that thin white t-shirts and sheer dresses don’t provide an adequate SPF (sun protection factor).
No tan can be considered a healthy tan, and whether you’re young or old, out on the beach with a group of girlfriends or with your children, it’s important for everyone to take proper steps to prevent those painful and permanently damaging sunburns.
National Melanoma/Skin Cancer Detection and Prevention Month
May has been designated as the National Melanoma/Skin Cancer Detection and Prevention Month by the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD), which focuses on lessening the occurrences of skin cancer, currently the most common form of cancer in the United States.
Throughout the month of May, AAD partners with top medical organizations such as the Center for Disease Control’s National Skin Cancer Prevention Education Program, the American Cancer Society, the US Environmental Protection Agency, the National Weather Service, and other health, educational and governmental organizations in a collaboration to raise awareness about skin cancer risk factors. Keep an eye on these organizations for opportunities such as free cancer screenings throughout the month.