SUN’S OUT!

How do you en­joy the sum­mer rays when they’re your skin’s big­gest threat? The lat­est and great­est sunscreens might just do the trick.

Vegas Magazine - - Contents - by CHRISTINA CLEMENTE

How do you en­joy the sum­mer rays when they’re your skin’s big­gest threat? The lat­est and great­est sunscreens might just do the trick.

Over the last two decades, doc­tors, sci­en­tists, and re­searchers have warned us about the harm­ful ef­fects of both UVA and UVB light, re­in­forced with data that shows melanoma rates in the US have dou­bled from 1982 to 2011. What’s more, re­cent stud­ies, in­clud­ing one from Tox­i­col­ogy and In­dus­trial Health, have shown that com­mon en­vi­ron­men­tal pol­lu­tants such as chem­i­cals re­leased from burn­ing coals and gaso­line sig­nif­i­cantly in­crease the skin’s pho­to­dam­age when cou­pled with UVA rays.

So it’s lit­tle won­der con­sumers are grav­i­tat­ing to­ward prod­ucts that of­fer a higher sun pro­tec­tion fac­tor (or SPF). Ac­cord­ing to re­tail an­a­lyst Karen Grant of the NPD Group, the num­ber of skin­care prod­ucts with SPF 50 has quadru­pled in sales since 2013. The mar­ket for color cos­met­ics has taken off, too, with sales of SPF 50 foun­da­tions grow­ing from $1.6 mil­lion to $21 mil­lion in just three years. “The con­sumer is very much aware of the need to have even higher lev­els of SPF,” says Grant. “You don’t see things quadru­ple or grow 20-fold un­less peo­ple are think­ing, Wow we re­ally need this.”

While cos­met­ics make for con­ve­nient sun pro­tec­tion, Francesca Fusco, an as­sis­tant clin­i­cal pro­fes­sor of der­ma­tol­ogy at New York City’s Mount Si­nai School of Medicine, cau­tions that SPF makeup shouldn’t nec­es­sar­ily re­place sun­screen. In fact, when ex­am­in­ing pa­tients un­der a Wood’s lamp, which re­veals some types of sun­screen on the sur­face of the skin, Fusco found that makeup with SPF may not al­ways evenly pro­tect the face. In­stead, she rec­om­mends ap­ply­ing at least an SPF 30 sun­screen five min­utes prior to your makeup to en­sure am­ple pro­tec­tion.

The SPF num­ber, how­ever, is not the only fac­tor to keep in mind. “It’s about the cor­rect ap­pli­ca­tion and the reap­pli­ca­tion, de­pend­ing on where you are,” Fusco says. For days spent out­doors, she sug­gests ap­ply­ing pro­tec­tion gen­er­ously, all over, ev­ery two hours. But don’t ne­glect your skin on work­days, even if your time in the light is min­i­mal. Says Fusco, “Peo­ple don’t re­al­ize that the in­ci­den­tal sun ex­po­sure they get ev­ery day adds up and con­trib­utes to their risk for skin can­cer and sun dam­age.”

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