Here’s a secret. One of my most frequently asked questions is what is the best anti-ageing product I can buy for my skin?! My answer? Spoiler alert: it’s not actually an anti-ageing product at all – it’s SPF! Sunscreen is an absolute essential for your routine if you’re planning on reducing the impact that the sun’s harmful rays can have on your appearance.
How does it cause damage?
Simply put there are two main concerns that occur as a result of too much sun exposure: skin-ageing and skin cancer. Whilst that sounds alarming, unfortunately it’s absolutely true and especially for those of us who are out and about in the sun more often. The UV light in the sun’s rays causes sunburn and sun damage by altering our cellular DNA. These rays are made up of long-wave UVA (causing ageing) and short-wave UVB (causing the burning and in extreme cases cancer). Unfortunately, the World Health Organisation has identified UV rays are a proven carcinogen so there really is no such thing as a ‘safe’ tan.
What does that mean in practice?
Coupled with the fact that more of us are taking steps to take better care of our skin than ever before, this can be a recipe for disaster! If you’re investing in products that promote cell turnover in order to reveal wonderfully fresh skin cells but aren’t using SPF on a daily basis you’re actively increasing the likelihood of more damage being done to your skin than can ever be undone with anti-ageing products.
The good news is that although frighteningly invisible, this cancer and ageing causing menace can be kept in its tracks with daily application of a broad spectrum SPF (simply look for wording on the bottle that offers protection against both UVA and UVB rays and you’re good to go). However, there’s a catch.
Applying SPF needs to be a daily practice throughout the year, NOT just in the summer months. That’s right, 365 days a year. Even on cloudy days the sun’s rays are strong enough to cause damage. Simply apply it first thing after your morning skincare routine for all day protection.
How many of you regularly use an SPF? Let me know in the comments.
Until next time,