The UK's getting hotter and we must look after our skin in the summer months.
Aside from sunburn being uncomfortable, we need to protect our skin from UV rays for health...and vanity.
UV rays accelerate the appearance of ageing - wrinkles and pigmentation - by generating Reactive Oxygen Species (types of free radicals).
So, as well as using SPF barriers to UV, we need antioxidants to neutralise free radicals.
Here's how best to protect your skin with topical SPF and antioxidants.
Why use natural sunscreen?
Natural sunscreen tends to refer to mineral sunblock rather than chemical SPFs. I prefer natural sunscreens because they don't cause prickly heat, and they may be better for you - and the environment.
Higher SPF isn’t always better
When it’s hot, common sense says slap on the highest factor SPF available….but that’s not always the right choice!
A common reason for sunburn is our failure to reapply sunscreen every 2 hours and after swimming and sweating - and when wearing SPF of more than 30, people assume they're better protected and reapply less frequently.
Natural sunscreens use a barrier mineral that reflects UV rays from the skin (zinc oxide or titanium) and they only go up to SPF30. Also, they’re usually not waterproof which I say is a good thing - yes, you have to reapply more often if swimming, but as someone who suffered prickly heat as a child, I want something breathable.
Avoid chemicals for the ocean!
Another reason to use mineral SPF is that a common chemical sunscreen, oxybenzone, is harmful to us and to the environment. You can read more at EWG if you fancy, but essentially it’s a hormone disruptor that gets into the human body, and it also causes coral bleaching. It’s so bad for the ocean it’s outlawed in Hawaii!
Protect your skin from within
Skincare from within is just as important as what we apply externally!
Having very pale skin that's easily burnt, l'm careful to limit sun exposure and wear sunscreen and hats in hot weather, but I also care for my skin through antioxidant intake.
Carotenoids, Vitamin C, Vitamin E (to name a few) are important antioxidants for our skin’s protection from UV. And I’ve included loads of them in my Pollution Protection Daily Multi.
Also, we have to think about Vitamin D! Most of us don't get enough sun exposure year round and need to supplement Vitamin D even in summer - and that's in your Pollution Protection Daily Multi too.
Wishing you a beautiful sunny week - don’t forget the natural sunscreen!
Last updated 12/06/2023