Working on that summer glow
There are many ways to look after your skin, and believe it or not, exercising is one of the best. By increasing your heart rate, you’re automatically increasing blood flow, which helps to nourish your skin, keeping it vital. It’s when you’re working out in the hot sun that it’s harmful to your skin. Yes, we’ve heard them all: ‘Stay out of the sun, you’re going to get burnt’ or ‘make sure you drink enough water’. And yes, we realise no sane person actually disputes these age-old bits of wisdom, but we thought we’d take a closer look and get the cold, hard facts.
SUN, FUN and SPF
SPF, or sun protection factor, is a measure of how well your sunscreen absorbs or reflects UV (ultraviolet) rays from the sun. Summer is a perfect time to hit the beach, get outdoors and work up a sweat, though we need to be extra careful when it comes to how we take in all that sunshine. Often people don’t realise that there are certain parts of the body where we generally forget to apply sunscreen, such as the top of your head and ears. Yes, you read that right, the head and ears. While hair does offer some defence, your hairline and parting are still left exposed. Bald individuals can also attest to scalp sunburn and how painful this really is. Inflammation, itchiness and tenderness can be some of the symptoms of sunburn and are no fun to recover from.
Sunburnt ears will also turn red, and feel tender and warm, and are a high risk area for developing skin cancer. Clearly, there is never a time when you don’t need sun protection if you’re out and about. Simply taking a stroll unprotected can cause severe damage to your skin, which we only see years later, and by then, it could be too late to reverse. So lather up on that sunscreen!
Summer is all about that sun-kissed glow we all try so hard to achieve. As much as we love a good tan, the dangers of tanning far outweigh their benefits. Skin cancer is just one of the side effects, along with wrinkles, sun spots, dryness and the basic breakdown of your actual DNA. This does not sound like the makings of a beautifully bronzed body, even though that’s what it looks like for a brief amount of time. It’s a myth that there is a safe way to tan. Unfortunately, it’s not at all possible, because you are damaging your skin at the genetic level, no matter how little sun you are exposed to, and the damaging effects last long after your tan has faded. It’s best to avoid the sun whenever you can and rather find alternatives to achieve a believable glow, and there are many options you can choose from. Spray tans, tanning lotions and gels, tinted moisturisers, bronzing pearls and highlighters will all give you a glow without the damage!
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