- Why do you need to use sun protection? Ultraviolet radiation from the sun enters the skin and breaks down into free radicals which cause damage leading to skin cancer and aging of the skin with wrinkling, brown spots and spider veins.
- Is the sun strongest at certain times of the day? Yes, the sun’s radiation is strongest from 10 am to 4 pm so limit exposure during these times.
- Does sunscreen alone provide enough protection? No. If you enjoy outdoor activities, add an antioxidant serum, wear a broad-brimmed hat, protective clothing and sunglasses.
- Is the sunscreen’s SPF important? Yes. Use an SPF 30+ containing zinc oxide and titanium dioxide.
- How long does sunscreen keep its strength? About 2 years if it is kept out of the sun and heat. Check the bottle for the expiry date but if you are using it regularly, it should not last that long.
- How much sunscreen should you apply? 30 grams (1 shot glass full). Apply to all exposed areas.
- In which order do you layer your products? Serum, moisturizer, sunscreen, make-up, then insect repellent.
- Do you need sunscreen if it is not sunny out? Yes. UVA is still present on overcast days so wear sunscreen, protective clothing and sunglasses daily. UVA also penetrates through glass.
- Do sunburns cause skin damage? Yes. Five sunburns double the risk of melanoma skin cancer.
- Is a tan healthy? No. A tan is a sign of sun damage. Non-spray self-tanners are OK to use.
- Do dark complexions need sunscreen? Yes, to protect from skin cancer and dark spots.
- Are you protected if you sit in the shade? Not necessarily. Make sure to avoid UV reflection off pavement, sand and water.
- Do golfers need to worry about the sun? Yes. In addition to damage from the sun, water and sand- traps reflect UV radiation.
- Do you need to re-apply sunscreen? Yes. Sunscreen only lasts 2 hours when exposed to sun.
- Is the sun the only source of vitamin D? No. Vitamin D is found in eggs, salmon, enriched milk, orange juice and supplements.
- Do tanning salons cause skin cancer? Yes. Indoor tanning increases the risk of melanoma by 75% in people under the age of 35 years.
- Is it too late to reverse past sun damage? No. You can use sun protection, topical antioxidants, AHA’s and retinols at home, as well as our in-office treatments such as IPL, fractional lasers and photodynamic therapy to help reverse your sun damage.
How did you do?Written by Dr. Martie Gidon
Gidon Aesthetics and MediSpa - Center for Laser Skin Resurfacing, Laser Skin Tightening and Cellulite Treatment. Cosmetic Dermatology practice of Dr Martie Gidon in Toronto providing a wide range of laser and light based therapies.