What is SPF and why do I need to wear it every day? Here’s everything you need to know
Summer is just around the corner. But you don’t need to wait until June 21st to start wearing SPF.
“Whether you’re running errands or soaking up some rays – wearing sun protection is something we should all be doing,” award-winning beauty therapist Rosa Scialo, of BodySense Beauty Treatments says. “And we should be doing so every single day.”
“When I say sun protection, I don’t mean heavy sun cream we all use when we go on holiday. I mean products which are designed to sit alongside and complement your normal daily skin care routine.”
But why is that?
Exposure to the sun causes ageing. From as young as 25-to-35 years old collagen, elastin and hyaluronic acid start to deplete, having a negative effect on the skin causing oxidative stress within the cells and accelerating the skin’s natural ageing process. But helping to stimulate, strengthen and support the skin and protect it from the sun’s rays is where SPF comes in.
“The earlier we support the skin – the better,” Rosa says. “Remember prevention is better than cure. By starting young you will be building the foundations for a healthier, younger looking skin.”
According to the NHS, sunburn can also increase your risk of skin cancer. Contrary to popular belief, sunburn doesn’t just happen on holiday. It can happen in the UK and even when it’s cloudy.
Heard of UVA and UBA rays? These are the two types of natural energy produced by the sun, called UV radiation.
Both UVA and UBA rays are damaging to the skin. When it comes to deciphering the difference, it’s the UVB rays which are responsible for burning the skin. While the UVA rays contribute to ageing.
Rosa explains: “UVA are the most common rays, causing premature ageing by breaking down our cellular DNA causing not only wrinkles but pigmentation (brown spots) too! These rays are present all year round, even in the winter months. If you sit by a window in the office or are driving around all day, these rays penetrate glass and damage the skin. The sun is the number one cause of premature ageing and contributes to most of the damage visible on our skin. It’s said that about 90% of ageing caused by UV rays can be prevented by wearing a daily sun protection product.”
So, how can you best protect your skin?
There are several ways to protect your skin from the sun. These include:
Limiting your time in the sun when it’s strongest, between 11am – 3pm
Wearing accessories like sunglasses, hats and long-sleeved clothing
Wearing sun protection every day without fail
Reapplying sunscreen whilst sunbathing
How to pick the best sun protection
Not all SPFs are created equal.
“For daily use on your face, you should look for an ‘invisible fluid formulation’,” Rosa says. “They will be lighter and able to complement your makeup and moisturiser and act as a veil that will protect your skin. Most sun protection products contain ‘active ingredients’ which are known to protect from both types of UV rays, such as Titanium oxide and Zinc oxide which are naturally reflective and so scatter UV radiation.”
If you look on the beauty shelves, you’ll notice that some products contain SPF. But Rosa recommends buying a separate facial sun protector, rather than using a dual-use product that contains a SPF.
“Each product has its own job to do,” Rosa says. “I would suggest adding a specific facial sun protection cream to your routine, like Matis City Protect 50. The City Protect is a light pollution protective fluid that will not only protect you from UV rays, but infrared light and blue light – like the light emitted from our screens. It has SPF50, is light in texture and does not contain talc – which can clog the skin causing congestion."
"Think of it as ‘daylight’ protection rather than sun protection. We all accept that on a hot sunny day our skin needs a barrier but this is even more so important for our faces. We need to be wearing a sun protector all year round, during the daylight hours even on a cloudy or rainy day. The whole time we are exposing our self to daylight we are exposing out selves to UV rays.”
Ready to protect your skin? Here at BodySense Beauty Treatments Rosa stocks a range of sunscreens from award-winning French beauty brand Matis. You can pick up SPF50, 30 and more. Get in touch to give your skin a protective veil from UV rays.