Sun – Sea – Beach are the three characteristic details that describe the landmarks of Cyprus.
We all know the beneficial impact that solar radiation can have on our health, however, the harmful effects it can cause on our skin are plenty and are divided briefly into two main categories below:
- The ones that can be instantly seen, are turning red from exposure to the sun and sunburn, discolouration or as commonly known blotches, photosensitivity, photodermatitis (sun sensitivity disorder)
- The other ones will be noticeable in the long term, and they are the most serious ones. These are photo ageing and photocarcinogenesis (skin cancer).
It is said that in recent years, the sun has become even more dangerous compared to how it used to be in the past. The use of sunscreen has increased more than ever before and is now essential due to the ultraviolet rays we are exposed to.
Summer skin care tips
- Avoid being in the sun from 11:00 in the morning until 16:00 in the afternoon (you should be very careful with kids whose skin is very thin and it won’t get thicker when the intensity of the sun gets stronger)
- Use sunscreen daily with high SPF protection. Choose SPF 30 or 50.
- Wear a hat (children, men suffering from androgenetic alopecia – hair loss), long-sleeved clothes and trousers.
- Mind the light reflection.
Importance of using a sunscreen
Nowadays, with the help of nanotechnology and molecular biology, sunscreen products of high quality have been made for which a combination of chemicals and natural filters are used. This is to ensure protection against UVA and UVB rays and eliminate any unwanted effects as well as the unpleasant feeling of a thick texture.
The right choice of suitable sunscreen has to do with the skin type a person has (normal, oily, combination, dry) and the SPF protection.
The sun protection factor (SPF) which is written on sunscreen products refers to the amount of time that your skin can be protected from the sun’s UVB rays and does not cause sunburn. For example, SPF 50 allows exposure to the sun 50 times more than the time spent without any sunscreen protection.
However, this amount of time is not the same for everyone. Theoretically, the time depends on other factors too. It is a fact that sunscreen filters do not protect the skin in the same way after a few hours from when it was first applied. For instance, a morning spent in the city requires sunscreen with high protection that can last 4 hours maximum, while at the beach since we sweat and get wet, the sunscreen protection does not last long and should be reapplied more often.
Apart from choosing the right sunscreen, it is also important to use it correctly. Therefore, it is essential to apply enough sunscreen 20-30 minutes prior to being exposed to the sun. In addition, it should be applied correctly all over the face, neck, and cleavage, as well as any other unprotected areas such as the scalp.
IMPORTANT TIPS BY DR. MARIA KASSINI
- Before getting in the car, make sure to apply sunscreen to the top part of your arms because while you drive, your hands are exposed to the sun and as a result, your skin wrinkles and dark spots are created.
- When you apply your sunscreen on your face and body before going to the beach, do not forget to apply your sunscreen on any moles you have, especially the ones which appear as small white spots.