DAM­AGE BY THE DECADE

“There is some ev­i­dence to show that daily use of sun­screen re­duces the ap­pear­ance of ag­ing, as op­posed to in­ter­mit­tent use.”

The Kit - - THEKIT.CA - — Eden Boileau

If only sun dam­age were lim­ited to that adorable ini­tial sprin­kling of freck­les. With­out ad­e­quate pro­tec­tion, how­ever, it pro­gresses over time to be­come a mot­tled mix­ture of sag­ging, hy­per­pig­men­ta­tion and wrin­kles, of­ten be­fore you’ve re­al­ized it’s hap­pen­ing. “There is some re­cently pub­lished ev­i­dence to show that, at least over the pe­riod of a year, daily use of sun­screen re­duces the ap­pear­ance of ag­ing, as op­posed to in­ter­mit­tent use,” says Dr. Ja­son Rivers, founder of River­sol Skin­care and Pa­cific Der­maes­thet­ics in Van­cou­ver and an ex­pert in the sun’s ef fect on skin. “I think that ’ s partly be­cause we’re get t ing ex­posed to ul­tra­vi­o­let ra­di­a­tion year- round and that doesn’t fluc- tu­ate much.” We asked Rivers what some­one who lives in Canada, is ex­posed to a mod­er­ate amount of sun all the time and doesn’t wear sun­screen can ex­pect to see as time goes by.

20s: Rough start

“In the 20s, you’ve had a few sun­burns and you may see signs al­ready of sun dam­age. You’ll have freck­les, for ex­am­ple, what we call so­lar lentig­ines; these are like brown splotches on the back and the up­per shoul­der where some­body may have had a sun­burn in the past. You may see the skin be­com­ing more coarse, for ex­am­ple, if you run your hand up and down your arm, you may feel it as sort of rough on the out­side and smooth on the in­side—that is re­lated to sun dam­age.”

30s: Spot pa­trol

“You’re go­ing to start see­ing brown spots more, es­pe­cially on the arms and hands. You may see pig­men­tary changes to the skin as well, in terms of brown blotches. The skin may be­come more coarse and maybe you’re start­ing to de­velop some fine lines.” 40s: Pile on “At 40, it de­pends on how much sun you’re get­ting, but the process gets more ac­cu­mu­lated. You’re start­ing to get deeper lines. You’re start­ing to see a mix­ture of pig­men­ta­tion, so it be­comes a bit more mot­tled. Pore size may start to in­crease on the face. If you’re get­ting enough sun you may start to get some pre- can­cer skin le­sions on the dé­col­letage area. You’re start­ing to see red­ness some­times, lit­tle bro­ken cap­il­lar­ies, and some tex­tu­ral change to the skin, so it’s not as smooth.” 50s+: Can­cer warn­ing

“In the 50s and be­yond, you’re get­ting more sun- re­lated mot­tling and pig­men­ta­tion, and the skin may be­come thin­ner. You may start see­ing the skin bruise more eas­ily be­cause of sun dam­age. You may star t get­ting pre- can­cer­ous skin le­sions or skin can­cer from that time out in the sun.”

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