Summer Skin Care: Four Tips To Stay Healthy
Summertime is much anticipated in Richmond for its gorgeous weather. There’s never a shortage of activities to enjoy when the sun shines, and at Bon Secours we encourage everybody to get out and move as much as possible. As you plan your next adventure, of course, it’s important to protect your skin, your body’s largest organ. Regardless of how much or how little you intend to bare on the jogging trails or the nearest park, the steps you take for skin care to prevent burns and discomfort can ensure a safe and healthy season.
The Right SPF for the S-U-N
You know to apply sunscreen to exposed skin before you spend a lengthy amount of time outside. Once you’ve finished, though, do you make do with what you’ve used or do you replenish after a few hours? If the former, you should know that the sunscreen you wear only works for so long. If your plans include an entire morning and afternoon outdoors, pack your sunscreen and pass it around when it’s time for a new layer of protection.
When it comes to choosing the right sunscreen for your outings, you’ll need to take into consideration your skin type, your activities, and any skin health factors. The SPF number on the label doesn’t necessarily indicate higher is better in terms of blocking UV. The number merely indicates how well the lotion protects before you start to burn. SPF 15 lotion, for example, grants you about 150 minutes before you might turn red, plus it filters about as many UV rays as an SPF 30 lotion. Also, check the labels if you’re looking for sunscreen that works when you’re in the water.
One more thing about sunscreen: we tend to forget an important body part when we apply protection…our lips. Yes, they are susceptible to burns and even skin cancer. Using an SPF lip balm before going outside can help keep them supple and safe from UV.
While sunscreen provides some hydration for your skin, it’s essential to drink water throughout the day to replace what you perspire due to exercise or activity under the sun. Water also helps cool down your body temperature so you don’t overheat, and gives you a boost of energy to see you through your run or bike ride. Even relaxing in the backyard on a cloudy day requires water close at hand so your skin stays hydrated and healthy.
For our more sensitive areas – faces, eyes, feet – the right cover protects our skin from burns. A hat with a broad brim will protect your ears more than a baseball cap, and is essential if you have thinning hair and spend a lot of time outdoors. If you prefer sandals and flip-flops in summertime, make sure you apply sunscreen to your feet. At the beach or park, consider SPF clothing designed to block UV.
Pack a healthy, antioxidant-rich snack like dark berries, nuts (particularly almonds and walnuts) or grapes to take wherever you go. Antioxidants work to eliminate the free radicals that promote skin aging and other damage, so if your stomach rumbles before mealtime have something on hand to tempt you away from the concession stands and hot dog carts.
We’ve looked forward to summer since the beginning of the year, and we know you have too. Enjoy the sunny days wherever you go and remember these simple tips to keep your skin healthy and protected.