The unforgiving African sun is upon us. This is the time to protect your skin and body against the harsh elements associated with the sun and wind. The best thing is to wear sunscreen every day, even in winter, as UV rays still penetrate the Earth’s protective layer. Here are a few tips and advice to keep your skin healthy and for it to maintain its natural glow and elasticity, through all the outdoor parties and beach trips.
UV Rays Explained
Ultraviolet rays are harshest between 10am and 4pm, so the best is to stay out of the sun between those times. UVA us the type that causes aging, while UVB is responsible for sunburn. To establish how much UV light you are being exposed to, look at your shadow; if your shadow is shorter than you it means that your UV exposure is at its highest. If your shadow is longer, it means that your exposure is lower.
This liquid, spray or cream is a vital part of skin protection. If you are going to be exposed to the sun, be sure to use a sunscreen with at least SPF 30. Remember to reapply it regularly (2 hours apart is suggested) and more often if you perspire or if you are swimming.
Do not neglect your lips! The skin on your lips are much thinner than anywhere else and burn very easily. Lip protection has advanced greatly over recent years, and many lipsticks and lip balms contain SPF. Ideally you should use one that offers an SPF of at least 15. Reapply this regularly as well to avoid burn lips or nasty cold sores.
Always take a hap or cap where ever you go. Hats not only protect your skull from direct sunlight, but shades and cools you face and neck. With a wide variety of hats this summer, you will not be left looking like a granny from the 80s, but rather stylish and health conscious.
Sunglasses not only look ‘cool’ but also protect your eyes and the delicate skin around your eyes from the harsh UV rays and bright light. An adequate pair of sunglasses do not have to cost you thousands, but must have a legitimate sticker/label stating its UV protection information and index. Polarised sunglasses are also a very good option as it blocks out glare and makes it easier to see objects especially in extremely bright conditions. Choose a frame that fits close to your face, or even better a wraparound style which will offer you the best protection.
Although many advancements have been made in the sunscreen and skin care industry, all the products though vital, can build-up and have a negative effect. Therefore it is advised that you exfoliate your skin often two to three times a week to remove dead skin cells and products that may clog your pores. Also drink lots of water to keep your skin healthy and hydrated from the inside. Fresh fruit and foods with high water content will leave you feel and looking great.