• Dr Joachim Stolte

Why a good SPF is a skin-care essential

It is well known that spending a greater amount of time in the sun without an SPF increases our risk of skin cancer. Damage from the sun is also one of the major causes of skin ageing. In fact, the World Health Organisation believes that sun exposure is responsible for up to 90% (!) of the visible signs of ageing. Most of us are more aware than ever of the benefits of using an SPF (and might have one in your daily moisturiser or foundation) and are ultra careful to take care whilst out enjoying the summer sun. When heading to the beach or the park, we are getting much smarter about slopping the suncream on ourselves and our nearest and dearest. We know to reapply after being in the water and to take steps to avoid the hottest parts of the day.

Why then, should we be using an SPF all year round and make it an essential part of our daily skin care routine? Despite being sun savvy, there remains a lot of myths and misinformation about skin damage and how to prevent it. Read our Four Skin Sun Myths to see if you might benefit from a change in your skincare routine.

Myth 1) You can only burn in the summer. Whilst the majority of sun damage occurs in direct sunlight during the summer months, UV rays can reach us even on hazy, cloudy or winter days. You need to think about sun protection all year round.

Myth 2) I work indoors, so I don't need to use suncream. Some UV rays are able to pass through glass too; so those of us who spend long days travelling or in the window of an office, may still be at risk from sun damage.

Myth 3) I use an SPF in my moisturiser and foundation so I'm covered. Although most moisturisers and foundations have a factor 15 or 30 in them, you will not be using enough to give you that full coverage (SPF calculations are based on users applying a larger amount that you would ordinarily use) and can be further diluted by the moisturiser. As such, you might not be getting the coverage you think you are.

Myth 4) I always use a Factor 10 so I'm safe. Always check your labels; SPFs should be labelled 'broad spectrum' to ensure you are being protected against both UVA and UVB rays. Plus, only products with an SPF of 15 or higher are actually proven to be able to protect against skin cancer and the ageing affects of sun damage. Labelling and effectiveness can also differ depending on the region of the world you are in; its best to check and ask if you're unsure.

So, what should you be doing? Here at MEDfacials, we recommend taking one simple step to protecting your skin from the harmful and damaging effects of the sun - use a separate SPF, ALL YEAR ROUND! For best effect, apply it daily, at least 10 minutes before the rest of your skin care regime (moisturiser and serums) to give it a good chance to sink into your skin. If you are out in the sun for a large part of the day, then try to reapply.

Many of our clients worry that there skin will get blocked or look greasy if they use an SPF; the good news is that there are some amazing products available which sit beautifully on the skin. Here are our top three choices for all budgets:

1) Aldi Lacura Extra Sensitive Sun Lotion £1.99; proving that sun protection doesn't have to be costly, this bargain buy offers both UVA and UVB protection. Its been dermatologically accredited and given a 5* UVA Ultra rating. Good for even the most sensitive skins, it a good all rounder for the whole family.

2) Your Good Skin SPF 30 Anti-Oxidant Day Cream £8 RRP; developed by dermatologists, this lightweight day cream offers SPF 30 protection with a non pore-blocking formula and is paraben and oil free, meaning it feels light and non-greasy on your skin.

3) iS Clinical Extreme Protect SPF 30 £64; this wonder product is an amazing all round moisturiser; offering SPF 30 protection and clinically proven to also repair and restore the skin, helping to combat environmental factors that result in moisture loss, dehydration and signs of ageing. Available to buy now from https://www.medfacials.com/product-page/extreme-protect-spf-30

If you have any more questions about how to stay safe and protect your skin from the harmful effects of the sun, or would like help or support for any aspect of your skin care, please drop us a line at the clinic at info@medfacials.com we are always happy to help!

MEDfacials 01872 463140
Dr Stolte 07886250647
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