Sun Protection and Skincare

It still surprises me, with so much information available and so many products with sun protection, how often I am asked about sun lotions and how to care for skin after sun burn.

There seems to be a thought in people’s minds that it’s ok to burn, that there’s a magic product that’ll solve it all later – there isn’t.

Sun damage cannot be reversed.

Sure, you can soothe skin, reduce the redness, take away the pain, etc., but you really cannot reverse the damage sun exposure causes.  Prevention, not cure, is the way.

It is vital to protect your skin as best you can BEFORE you hit the sunshine – use the highest SPF you can, apply before you apply clothing, top up while you are out (especially after swimming) – as often as every 30 minutes in very exposed areas.  You can buy ‘once-a-day’ lotions, but having had bad experiences in the past (with Boots Soltan Once) I tend to avoid these.

I appreciate that there is much worry about certain brands and the chemicals used in sun protection products – I used to love the Piz Buin range (I still do, actually), but the negative media around such brands really had me questioning what I was putting on to my skin.  If this is an issue for you too, you’ll find some very good ‘green’ sun protection brands available – look for Arbonne, Green People, Lovea and Aloe Pura.

Suncare products don’t come cheap either… if cost is an issue for you, please don’t avoid using sun protection.  Have a look in Wilkinson, Home Bargains, those sort of shops, or look out for offers at Boots or in supermarkets for their 3 for 2 deals. A cheap option for me would be the fabulous Malibu Sun range – the Bronzing Butter is a great choice for sunbathers.

So which products?

As an Arbonne Consultant I now choose most of my products from their sun care range – the Water Resistant Sunscreen SPF 30 is the product I use most, it’s never allowed me to burn, it protects and also replaces my morning body lotion. My skin has been great during the summer when using this, really nourished and healthy-looking.  I also have the Lip Moisturiser – this is my year-round essential for lips anyway, but in summer it’s a true benefit for moisturisation and protection.

So far I have not had to use the After Sun Lotion from Arbonne, but sadly I have had to recommend it to a few people! It is very soothing and hydrating – if you do get burnt, you must, must, must keep your skin hydrated – choose a water-based lotion and drink plenty of water, your skin will really be suffering.  For very red and sore areas, many health shops have an aloe vera gel with lavender – this is a great buy for any sun-catastrophes!

If you do get very burnt and are in pain, I recommend seeing your doctor – sun burn isn’t just about lobster-red skin, you may experience symptoms of sunstroke and dehydration, and it is important to receive correct treatment.

Hopefully I haven’t frightened you all too much!  Do enjoy your summer sunshine, but please do protect your skin 🙂

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