I doubt anyone will even read this post but I wanted to write it anyway as I just want to put my thoughts onto paper (or screen technically) because being safe in the sun is something that I really believe in and certain things frustrate me.
Growing up, I’ll admit that I actually thought that wearing sun cream would stop me tanning but that’s not the case. Everyone knows that wearing sun cream is so important when going out into the sun. Even if it’s just SPF 8 it’s better than nothing, but ideally the higher the better. There’s two types of UV rays that effect us, UVA – 95% of the suns rays and these cause long-term damaging effects and UVB – 5% of the suns rays and these cause sunburn. The number next to the SPF doesn’t mean the stronger the better, it just means your skin is protected for longer. For example; if you burn in the sun after 10 minutes, SPF 15 will allow you to be in the sun for up to 150 minutes. But this isn’t always accurate as everyone is different and everyone needs to be careful regardless.
Wearing sun cream does not stop you from getting a tan, it just stops you from burning. A tan is actually your bodies way of protecting itself against harmful rays but can still mean skin damage. Great tips are staying in the shade between 11am-3pm which is when the sun is at it’s hottest. Wear loose clothing that covers the areas that you burn most and also, a hat and sunglasses are a must. Make sure the sunglasses provide 100% UV protection though.
“I’m getting my body sun ready”
This I have heard a lot over the years, I’ve seen/heard people say that they’re going on holiday in 2 weeks so in order to get their body ready for sun, they’re going onto sun beds first. I don’t mean to offend anyone, it just baffles me beyond belief. Sunbeds are so incredibly dangerous as they give out ultraviolet light which increases the risk of skin cancer. Whether it be the suns rays or a sunbeds rays, it’s still UV which means damage. Moreover, many sunbeds give out more UV rays than midday sun in the Mediterranean. That’s insane!! Being honest, in total I’ve been on three sunbeds since I was 17 and I just didn’t see the point. I saw girls applying oil so they would burn in order to get a tan. Everyone knows that sunbeds aren’t safe, but some people get the idea that bad things won’t happen to them. Getting your body ready doesn’t mean burning yourself on a sun bed, it’s wearing sun cream in the sun. In most cases, a sunbed is even more harmful than the sun itself. And also, just because you get a tan from the sunbed and this stops you burning in the sun, that doesn’t mean you are safe, you’ve doubled the amount of exposure to UV rays in general.
Leather handbag anyone?
Extreme or excessive UV exposure without protection whether it be the sun or a sunbed, the damaging effects are premature wrinkles and ageing and the skin starts to looks leathery and coarse. It happens by the UV rays penetrating deep into the skins lower layers. I don’t know about you but that does not sound appealing to me. Yes you might be tanned whilst your young, but when you get older you may live to regret your actions. When I was younger, I didn’t apply sun cream to my chest and I burnt so much, I resembled a lobster and couldn’t move. My friend had to help me get undressed it was that bad. It turned into a big scab and then it peeled (so gross) but I’ve been left with a slight scar and 5 sun spots, which is skin damage. I’ve learnt my lesson.
The biggest biggest concern…
PIN IT!Liverpool “Bin the Beds” campaign.
Skin cancer – both Malignant Melanoma and Non-Melanoma
Yes the dreaded C word. After my mum survived breast cancer, I’m taking things extra seriously now. I know that this is the reason why I hardly ever drink alcohol any more and when I do, it’s never more than one glass. I wear sun cream like it’s going out of fashion and I try and eat as healthy as possible. I just want to look after my body as best as I can. I don’t want to have the risk of skin cancer added to my possible risk of breast cancer list. Skin cancer is now the most common type of cancer in the world and there are two types, Malignant Melanoma and Non-Melanoma. Both are serious however Malignant Melanoma is less rare but it spreads faster throughout the body.
I really don’t want to sound preachy, I just want to get my point across as I hate seeing people who are bright red in the street, I just want to scream “Put sun cream on!” at them, but that’s socially unacceptable. What I’m trying to say is, just stay safe, wear it all the time. If it’s cloudy out but still warm, still wear it as the harmful rays can penetrate the clouds and still effect you. And lastly, every inch needs to be covered in sun cream. The face, hands and neck are the places that show ageing first so slap it on ladies and gents! Who want’s wrinkles and leathery skin at 30? I certainly don’t. And anyway, a tan can always be produced with a good fake tan, there are plenty to choose from.
Are you sun ready?
All information used in this post was found on the NHS website.