GLORIOUS, golden sunshine – everyone loves it and the glowing healthy look it gives the face and body. But too much sun taken too quickly ravages the skin and causes premature aging, wrinkles, freckles and blemishes.
Tan slowly. Gradually build up an even distribution of color. Remember, once the skin has burnt, even slightly, it will peel and you will have to start all over again.
The questions and answers are aimed to turn the sun into a beauty ally this season, not an enemy.
Question: How much sun can I take the first week of a beach holiday?
Answer: Some doctors say that any amount of sun is damaging to the skin. In general, the fairer the skin, the more sensitive it is to sunshine. Start your tanning, well protected with a good sunscreen, in short sessions. 10 to 15 minutes on both sides of the body is enough the first day. Increase exposure by five to ten minutes after several days, then add five minutes daily depending on your skin type. Apply sunscreen after each swim.
Question: Why do I freckle? How can I protect my skin?
Answer: When the skin is exposed to sun the pigmentation present in everyone’s skin darkens. Freckles are unevenly distributed clumps of pigmentation which darken more than the surrounding less pigmented skin. To avoid freckles use a good sunscreen when working or relaxing out-of-doors. Don’t forget to coat the much neglected tips of ears and the back of hands and neck. For constant protection to the face use a makeup or moisturizer with a sunscreen.
Question: Why do lips crack in summer?
Answer: Frequent exposure to the sun, wind and salt water is particularly drying. Although lipstick is a helpful barrier, lips need a sun filter to screen out ultraviolet rays.
Question: What should I do if I become sunburnt?
Answer: Go indoors, take off all your clothes and sit for a few minutes to let your body cool. Run a bath of tepid water, never hot or cold, add a couple of capfuls of baby oil, to ease the taut skin, and soak for five to ten minutes.
Gently pat dry with a soft towel and smooth a light moisturizer over the skin. Don’t slather it on, as too heavy a coating will retain the heat. To help relieve temporary discomfort take a couple of aspirins and drink plenty of fruit juice or water. Avoid alcohol-based drinks.
For severe sunburn, see your doctor.
Question: Besides sun protectors, what else should I add to my beauty routine in summer?
Answer: Some women find their skins are oilier in hot weather. If so, try a skin toner after cleansing the face. If you have been using a toner, change to an astringent. It is stronger. Replace your oil-based makeup with a water-based one and use a light moisturizer for both day and evening. The Fine skin around the eyes will need extra care. Keep this delicate area well moisturized and protected from harmful ultraviolet rays with good quality sunglasses. Squinting from glare will promote crows feet, so wear sunglasses whenever in the open.
A wide-brimmed hat guards against sun parched hair and protects hair coloring too, so take one to the beach or whenever spending a prolonged time in the sunshine.
Question: Are certain parts of the body more vulnerable to sun than others?
Answer: Yes. Noses, shoulders collar bones and tops of feet burn first so protect these areas with, generous coatings of sunscreen creams.
Question: Is there any way to avoid turning red before tanning?
Answer: Turning red has nothing to do with tanning. They are two separate reactions of the skin to sun. Tanning is an increase in pigmentation. A substance called melanin, which is automatically produced by sunlight to prevent damaging rays from penetrating through to deep body tissues, shows as a suntan. Redness is caused by blood rushing to the defence of your burnt skin, dilating the little vessels that carry it.
To avoid redness, select a suitable sunscreen for your skin type and keep a strict eye on the time when lying in the sun. Never doze on the beach and avoid lying motionless. The accumulation of heat in the body produces excessive sweating which decomposes the sun-protection product on the skin. At the first sign of pinkness dash for cover.
Question: How can I keep my suntan as long as possible?
Answer: Tan slowly and gently. Massage the body each night with a moisturizer. Add a few drops of bath or baby oil to your bath water. Cheat a bit! Boost a fading tan with fake tanner.
Question: I am planning a motoring holiday this summer. Will I need protection from the sun shining through the window?
Answer: Yes. Use a good sunscreen to protect the skin exposed to sunlight passing through glass. This kind of sunlight will not give you a tan but it does cause the usual redness, loss of elasticity and premature aging of the skin that accompanies sunburn.