unicaArticol publicat in "UNICA"

unica- Iul. 2000 -

The sea, the sun…
by Bianca Brad

As soon as the summer comes
The sun shines everywhere
And burns your skin
Tan can be bad for you
So “Unica” gives you
A useful advice.

Not long ago, when I stayed in the sun for the first time, while having a drink on a terrace, I managed to get my face, arms and cleavage sunburned, because I didn’t have any sunscreen or a parasol with me. I was very angry with myself for being so absentminded and causing so much damage to myself. I was not upset because I didn’t get an even tan, but because it was exactly I, who gives advice regarding those aspects, that was the worst example! The sun is one of the skin’s worst enemies, being 90% responsible for the early ageing of the skin (and in most of the cases this starts at a very young age). Any kind of sun exposure attacks the cells and may lead to signs of ageing or even skin cancer. It is essential that you protect your skin even on cloudy days, because the UV rays penetrates the clouds. The tan is actually the body’s way of protecting itself, by producing melanin. But melanin alone is not enough to protect us. This is why there are sunscreen creams, which contain either chemical or physical filters, which, when applied on the skin, reflect the UV rays. Some contain both kinds of filters, offering a maximum protection. The physical filters contain minerals, which reject the UV rays before they touch the skin. The chemical filters absorb the UV rays on the surface of the skin. If your skin is sensitive, use a product which contains only physical filters, because the chemical ones can intensify the skin’s sensitivity. The number (SPF) on the sunscreen lotions (oils) represent the period of time during which you can be exposed to the sun without getting sunburned. For instance, if you skin turns red in 10 minutes, a 15 (SPF) solar protection factor will increase the protection 15 times, and in theory you could stay in the sun for 150 minutes without getting sunburned. The experts say that the SPF 15 is the magical number because bigger numbers offer only slightly more protection than SPF 15. Here are some advices from the experts:

- use daily a face cream that contains SPF 15

- put on the sunscreen lotion at least 15 minutes before getting out of the house and repeat several times when you swim

- even though most of the products warn that the lotion should not be applied around the eyes because it may cause itches, many dermatologists recommend that you do that. You should only test them on the back of your hand and choose the one that is absorbed into the skin the quickest.

- when buying sunscreen, check if it offers UVA/UVB protection. The sun radiations are different: UVA and UVB. UVA are connected to the ageing effect and UVB provokes sunburns, this is why, ideally, a sunscreen should include both types of protection.

- don’t be tricked into believing that the sun cures pimples. UV rays stop the sebum production only for a short time, but after 9-12 days the glands will compensate by producing even more and things will be worse.

- always choose sunglasses with 100% UVA and UVB protection. This is extremely important in order to avoid cornea inflammations and wrinkles. Wear them even when it’s cloudy. UV rays are just as dangerous then.

- don’t wear perfume or eau de toilette while sunbathing. There is the risk of having brown spots on your skin, which will remain visible for a long time.

- don’t peel oranges or tangerines while sunbathing. The juice of these fruit will also stain your skin.

- before going to the beach, when washing your hair, don’t rinse the conditioner off. It will act as a hat.

use the sand on the beach to exfoliate, by rubbing it on the harsh areas. Then put some more sunscreen on.

In case you still got sunburned, try one of the following solutions:
- gently rub affected areas with a linseed mash

- apply slices of fresh ripe tomatoes

- dip a towel into cold tea or vinegar and apply on the affected areas

There would be much more to say, but due to the lack of space I will have to resume to one last piece of advice: be very careful while at the seaside, in the sun!