We all know that here in New Zealand we need to protect ourselves from the sun, it’s more vicious than a lot of other countries.

In this post, we’re going to help you understand why it is so important to know about sunscreen.

The UV rating here in the winter time is higher than most countries in the summer time so you can only imagine what the sun is doing to our skin in summer.

UVA rays can affect our skin right down to the dermis, and this is what breaks down the collagen fibres in our skin causing fine lines and wrinkles. UVA rays can still affect our skin through glass windows; it also comes off computer screens and some lighting.

The UVB rays are what causes the burning, redness and swelling in our skin and this is NZ sun’s strength.  UVB rays are the main cause of melanoma.

ucm116427The sun also has another type of UV rays called UVC rays.  These are cancer-causing rays in the sun.

Photodamage (sun damage) is one of the five leading causes of ageing.   Especially for people of Celtic descent, their skin simply wasn’t designed for UV rays this intensive. The majority of our clients’ skin concerns, lead back to photodamage which is avoidable.

So what can you do to protect yourself this summer? 

TIPS:

– Cover up.  This is the best way to stay safe!  Hats and long sleeves. Trees and shade at the beach are essential.

-It is important to wear sunblock every day whether the sun is shining or not, knowing that the UV rating is still dangerously high in the winter and on a cloudy day and it can still get to our skin even when we are inside.

-When looking for sun blocks, a physical block is a must! A physical block (containing zinc) will reflect the sun’s rays from the skin compared to a chemical block, which will absorb the sun’s rays and disperse in the skin. An SPF 30 is the max you can go to and still have a physical block. An SPF 30 will give you 97.3% protection where an SPF 50 will give you 98% protection, not a huge difference.

-Lips are the one place that doesn’t produce melanin (the skin’s natural protection against the sun) therefore; they are at a very high risk of getting damaged and forming cancer cells. A lot of lipsticks and glosses do not have an SPF and also have a slight shine to them which will attract the sun, causing burning. Look out for an SPF lip gloss or balm next time.