PROS: Sun exposure is a source of vitamin D, which helps us absorb calcium for stronger and healthier bones.
CONS: Unprotected exposure to the sun’s UV rays can cause skin damage, eye damage, immune system suppression and skin cancer. The sun causes 90% of all skin cancers.
Casual sun exposure with protection can provide the positive of obtaining vitamin D. However, you can also get vitamin D from drinking fortified milk, salmon and vitamin supplements. The Skin Cancer Foundation estimates that one in five Americans will develop some form of the disease in their lifetime. The Huffington Post featured an article that highlighted 10 celebrities who have been touched by skin cancer, and I am sure many of you also have either personal stories or stories about loved ones who have also suffered from the disease.
I remember hearing stories from my mom and her friends about how they didn’t know better. They would ‘bake’ in the sun for hours with no sunscreen, but plenty of baby oil splashed from head to toe. They would get fried, and many have freckles to prove it!
So even though my mother may not have known about the harms of too much sun exposure years ago, we all know now. That’s why it’s so important to keep protected! There are so many awesome SPF’s out there, specialized for every skin type. One that I would love to share is EltaMD’s UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF 46. This SPF was a winner of the Elle 2010 Genius Awards, and comes in an airless pump. The formulation is very lightweight and is calming to sensitive or acne prone skin. This SPF is perfect to wear alone or under makeup, and remember SPF should be worn every day. You are constantly exposed to the sun . . . even while driving.
Proof of severe sun damage from driving is exemplified in a truly compelling Huffinton Post article, based on a delivery truck driver. Bill McElligott – 69 years old was a truck driver for 28 years and the picture in the article shows the effects the sun’s rays can have. McElligott’s left side of his face being exposed for 28 years to UVA rays transmitted through the window of his delivery truck looks 20 years older than his right side. If the image of McElligott’s face doesn’t make you want to protect your skin, I don’t know what will!
Be smart, and preserve your gorgeous skin! Always wear SPF, shade your face from the sun with a hat and make sure to constantly reapply your sunscreen! If you start preserving your skin now, you can look twenty years younger!