No one noticed Sun Awareness Week because of all the hail
This week is Sun Awareness Week - an initiative to make sure we’re looking after our skin in the summer months.
I'm a definite shade dweller - my skin is practically translucent so I can't spend much time in direct sun - I burn so easily, it's a hassle if I get caught out without sunscreen. Once my scalp got burnt and came flaking off, absolutely gross 🤮
Just for hippies or better for everyone?
I’ve used “natural” sunscreen for years and my motivation for starting was that they tend to be cruelty-free. But this week is Sun Awareness Week (though this may not have entered your consciousness due to extreme rain and hail!!) and the British Association of Dermatologists released a report that suggests other reasons to go for a quality natural sunscreen this year.
Higher SPF isn’t always better
The report showed that people are still stupid about getting sunburnt - 1 in 3 got sunburnt in the UK in the last year, and nearly half of those that went abroad got burnt. So when it’s hot, common sense says slap on the highest factor SPF available….but that’s not always the right choice! A common reason for sunburn is our failure to reapply sunscreen every 2 hours and after swimming and sweating - and when wearing SPF of more than 30, people assume they're better protected and reapply less.
Natural sunscreens use a barrier mineral that reflects UV rays from the skin (zinc oxide or titanium) and they only go up to SPF30. Also, they’re usually not waterproof which I say is a good thing - yes, you have to reapply more often if swimming, but as someone who suffered prickly heat as a child, I want something breathable. I like Green People which is water resistant but still lets your skin breathe/sweat. Plus it offers both UVA and UVB protection.
Avoid chemicals for the fishies!
Another reason to go for a mineral SPF is that a common chemical sunscreen ingredient, oxybenzone, is harmful to us and to the environment. You can read more at EWG if you fancy, but essentially it’s a hormone disruptor that gets into the human body, and it also causes coral bleaching. It’s so bad for the ocean it’s being outlawed in Hawaii! (**Boast alert**) I’m off on a family holiday to Barbados soon, so I’m hassling everyone to make sure they get reef-friendly sunscreen. My nieces haven’t been snorkelling before and I really hope there are still beautiful corals for them to see.
Protect your skin from within
Skincare isn’t only about what you put on your face...if I haven’t slept well or I’ve been to a party and eaten and drunk junk, there’s limited damage control possible from my face oils and serums. Skincare from within is just as important as what we apply externally! I’ll always have to be careful to stay out of the sun and use sunscreen, but I’m also prepping for summer by upping my antioxidant intake. Carotenoids, Vitamin C, Vitamin E (to name a few) are important antioxidants for our skin’s protection from UV. And luckily I’ve got loads of them in my Pollution Protection Daily Multi. Well, not by luck - by very careful design 😉
Also, I still try to get some morning or late afternoon sun without sunscreen on - gotta think about the Vitamin D! Because I don’t go outside enough in London, I want to supplement Vitamin D - and that’s in your Pollution Protection too.
Thankfully the sun has come out this afternoon - just look at the rain and hailstorm that happened here on Wednesday! Wishing you a wonderful weekend with nice enough weather to warrant sunscreen!