You might need a little time under sun for production of Vitamin D in your body, but prolonged sun exposure can only bring skin problems. Ultraviolet (UV) rays from the sun can be really harmful as they increase the risk of skin cancer. Over exposure to sunlight can also cause premature ageing, dryness and skin darkening. You can’t undo the damage caused by sun, but it’s never too late to protect yourself from the sun rays. Here is what you can do to enjoy sun safely:
- Wear sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 15. Apply a thick coating all over your body 30 minutes before exposure to sunlight. If you are not sweating or are not in the water, then you can go for maximum 2 hours without reapplying the sunscreen.
- Covering up is one of the best ways of protecting your skin from sun damage. Remember, sun rays are most intense between 10 am and 4 pm, try to avoid outdoors during this time. In case, it is unavoidable, wear hats and dark, tightly woven materials.
- As UV rays can cause cataracts, macular degeneration and melanoma of the eye, it is important to protect your eyes from sun. Wear sunglasses that block both UVA and UVB. Consider wraparound sunglasses as they offer the best protection.
- Don’t forget to wear sunscreen in winters or on cloudy days. UV rays aren't inhibited by clouds, they can penetrate them can cause damage to your skin. Even during winters it is important to cover up with appropriate clothing and wear a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15.
- If wearing sunscreen makes your skin looks shiny or chalky, consider using natural skin care products that have an SPF already in the formula. This way you won’t have to wear a sunscreen especially, as you are already getting the protection.
- Some women avoid sunscreen while wearing makeup. But, any layer of makeup can’t protect your skin from sun rays unless your foundation has an SPF.