As the hole in the ozone layer grows year after year the threat of skin cancer from ultraviolet sunlight becomes even more aggressive. In a nutshell, UVA causes aging and UVB burning. The longer-wave UVA, which can pass through clouds and glass, penetrates deeper into the skin, damaging collagen and elastin. This speeds up dryness, wrinkling, brown spots and will leave you with leathery skin. UVA can also affect the immune systems, damage DNA and may increase the risk of malignant melanoma. UVB rays are stronger , have an immediate impact and are primarily responsible for sunburn and skin cancers, but they are blocked by glass.
The sun is that it is actually good for you, it helps the body to produce a hormone called vitamin D. A micro-nutrient that helps to protect you against various types of cancer (colon, prostate and ironically melanoma) also diseases like osteroporosis, multiple sclerosis, diabetes and other chronic diseases. To produce enough vitamin D requires only 15 minutes of daily bright sunlight (not full-on lunch/afternoon sun) on unprotected skin. But only for people with olive toned skin, if you have very fair skin it is still a good idea to wear a sunscreen, because no suncreen blocks out 100% of UV light.
As I live and breathe beauty my mantra is ‘prevention before cure!’ and so for me I slather on sunscreen before I step out. It is so important to maintain a sensible attitude to sun care especially if you live in Australia where we have the highest rate of skin cancers in the world. Don’t be ignorant.
Australia has the best sunscreens in the world, some of my choice for organic screens are: Soleo Organics which you can find in most health food stores. If you’re not keen on the sheen when it comes to slathering on the block, try Alison Raffaele’s face blotting tissues, natural and unbleached.
Oh, and hats aren’t just for the races! Try to wear (stylishly) one when you know you’re going to be in the sun all day.