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Face the sun

The sun is not an enemy to your skin, only if you take necessary care and protection.

india Updated: Apr 15, 2010 01:24 IST
Aroma Sah

A daily dose of the harsh sunrays is impossible to avoid and so, it becomes imperative to protect your skin well. In the coming months, it is advisable to use an intensive sun protection.

Skin essential
Sun Protection Factor (SPF), determines the intensity of the lotion that is used and is also an indicator of the level of protection you can avail from it. “In summers, you have to repeat your sun protection regime compared to winters where you can get away with one application. Before reapplying the sunscreen, wash you face with an oil-free cleanser and the same must be repeated every time,” says Simi Ghai, make up expert, Xpressions.

Generally, SPF 15 sunscreen is the minimum requirement for most individuals. “Stronger sunscreens are recommended for people who have longer exposure time in the sun and SPF 30 is recommended for people with very fair or sensitive skin,” says Manisha Amol of Modicare Ltd.

What is harmful?
“Ultraviolet (UV) light from any source can induce pigmentation in skin. It also contributes to early signs of aging such as wrinkles, dark spots, freckles and photoallergies. Adequate oral intake of antioxidants (vitamin-C, vitamin-E, selenium etc) available in all citrus fruits, brocolli, tomatoes, grapes, capsicum, almonds, fish etc provides routine sun protection,” says Dr Ahmed Zaheer, dermatologist, Max Healthcare.

Sunscreens combine organic and inorganic chemicals to filter the light from the sun so that less of it reaches the deeper layers of your skin. “UV rays (both UV A and UV B) stimulate oil production in the skin and can even thicken the outer layer of your skin which eventually block your pores and leads to break outs. Oil free products should be used for oily skin and creamy for dry skin,” says Ghai. Dry skin is more prone to crow feet and wrinkles which makes sun protection even more important.

At home tips
Sunscreens cannot be substituted by any home options. A common misconception is that using a face pack with turmeric before stepping out in the sun acts as a natural sunscreen. However, this only makes the skin more prone to tanning.

Any facial treatments or beauty procedures clean your skin and make it sensitive and hence, application of sunscreen after such procedures is a must.