Sun care is skincare

By Mahika Panditha

It is so hot these days that I see absolutely no point in putting on makeup anymore. Even with the setting powder or setting spray, I still somehow sweat it all off. It is just a painful waste. However, I have recently begun taking more care of my skin in regard to sun damage, simply because of the heat and also due to a bad experience. Post a beach visit, I came back home to find my skin peeling off my face and it was absolutely aching. I literally could barely move my face. Thankfully, it resolved within a few days! But it did make me more conscious of taking care of my skin with regard to the sun damage.

It is general advice that you HAVE to wear sunscreen, even if it is in your makeup, because it is always good to have SPF in your products! So please do keep that in mind when you are going on your next shopping haul. It is also said to be one of the easiest ways to prevent contracting skin cancer.

How to protect your skin

  1. Use sunscreen everyday

It is as the name suggests on the products, a sun-protection factor (SPF). The number on your SPF is what is indicative of the effectiveness of blocking the UV rays that are harmful for your skin. It is suggested to at least use SPF 30 or above, but on a gloomy day, even SPF 15 and up is okay. You can also check on the label if the sunscreen is broad-spectrum. This means that it protects against ultraviolet A and ultraviolet B exposure on the skin. Just for your knowledge, UVB is what causes sunburn and UVA is what causes premature aging and skin cancer. Make sure you use a thick layer of it on your skin on every exposed area, including your face, back, shoulders, neck, arms, and legs. It doubles up as a moisturiser too!

  1. Reapply your sunscreen

Keep in mind that sunscreen wears off after about two hours, especially when you are swimming, sweating, or drying off. It is vital that you ensure you reapply. This is especially important when you are going to the beach or even to the pool. For us here in Sri Lanka, since we do go to the beach quite often and we are in the sun most of the time, WE MUST REAPPLY!

  1. Seek shade

It is said that the sun is the strongest between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. This is when your shadow will be smaller than you. Even though you are going for breakfast, brunch, lunch, or even tea, try to seek shade whilst doing so. This can be under trees, umbrellas, roofs, and so on. For those of you going to the beach during these times, maybe invest in a cute and big sun hat!

  1. Think about your outfit of the day

I know it is too hot to be wearing long-sleeved shirts and long pants or skirts, but keep it in mind. If it is not too much of a bother, try to wear those more often as they can protect you from the sun. Even wearing a tightly woven fabric will keep you protected. If you are wearing a wet shirt, it will not provide you with as much sun protection as a dry one. It is also good to keep in mind that darker colours will protect you more than the lighter ones. If you are going to the beach and do not want to wear anything long, maybe opt for a cover up or a t-shirt you can wear over your swimwear. This does not mean exclude hats and sunglasses, but it is good to keep it in mind.

  1. Sunglasses and hats

Bringing me to my next point, sunglasses and hats are super good investments. Sunglasses protect your eyes from the UV rays and also prevent the chances of cataract. They are also good to protect the fine skin under your eyes. When buying sunglasses, make sure you buy ones that block both UVA and UVB rays. With regard to hats, a brim all around your face will keep your face, ears, and neck covered. You can opt for a hat made out of canvas if you are looking for a super good one. Although straw hats are super cute and make an outfit better, it is best to avoid them as the holes will allow sunlight to seep through! Also, darker hats are better!

  1. Be cautious

Another thing to be aware of is that certain surfaces can reflect the sun and maybe even make the exposure that much more intense. You need to think about it whenever you are in water and sand. If you are not careful, this also increases the chance of sunburn.

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