Sun Care, We’re There – Again!
If you grabbed our latest issue you’ll know that sun care is a big focus of ours this season. As such, we wanted to ensure you had a complete arsenal of products at your disposal, so we’re bringing you even more of our top picks for sun care this season.
As was the case in our 5th issue, we’ll be looking at 5 key components for a complete suncare routine with the help of dermatologist and skincare expert Dr. Janet Prytowsky.
Dr. Janet Prytowsky says:
“Preparing your skin before applying sunscreen or self-tanner is helpful to create a more even tanning reaction in the skin. A buildup of dead skin cells will block even absorption of the sunscreen and/or self-tanner leading to unattractive blotches. Areas to pay particular attention to are around the ankles and toes. You may have additional trouble spots that may need attention.”
The Urban Veda Soothing Body Scrub is a great product to use for this mild exfoliation of built up dead skin cells.
With Sandalwood, Aloe Vera and Ylang Ylang, and using pumice stone and crushed walnut shells for exfoliating (not a plastic microbead in sight) not only does it soothe and calm distressed skin, it leaves it feeling soft, smooth and smelling yummy.
Urban Veda Soothing Body Scrub, £12.99 for 200ml at urbanveda.com
Lush’s Rub Rub Rub Shower Scrub is a personal favourite, with lemon juice, sea salt (I do so love a salt scrub) and orange flower extract, this vegan wonder buff can be used on wet skin for a mild scrub, dry skin for a deeper exfoliation and even scalp for a detox with a volumising effect.
Lush Rub Rub Rub Shower Scrub, £10.95 for 330gr at Lush
“Sun protection is important year round but how intense your protection is during the Winter depends on latitude and altitude. For the months where you go to work in the dark, stay in the office all day and go home in the dark, there is no need for sunscreen unless you have an office flooded with sunlight. But a sunscreen in your moisturizer can help for day to day protection in the sunny office and going to and from work the rest of the year. Note that in the case of sunlight going through glass, you will not sunburn because UVB rays do not penetrate. But UVA rays do go through glass and contribute significantly to photoaging and skin cancer risk. An SPF of 30 broad-spectrum is all you need for going to and from work and if you have a sunny office. Just keep in mind that a moisturizer is not water resistant so these moisturiser sunscreens are not for exercise or swimming where sweat and water exposure will decrease their effectiveness.”
The Milani Prime Protect SPF 30 Face Primer is a great multi-tasking product for everyday use in the city. On its own or under makeup, it goes on smoothly and evens out skin whilst protecting it from harmful UV rays. This vegan formula isn’t chalky or sticky and it doesn’t leave a residue.
Milani Prime Protect SPF 30 Face Primer, £15.00 RRP for 30ml at beautycutie.com
For complete protection in Summer sun, Eucerin Sun Spray Transparent Dry Touch Sensitive Protect SPF 50+ is a top choice.
Eucerin’s Medical Manager, Dylan Griffiths advices: “I’d suggest a minimum of SPF30 for both face and body, clothing provides only a small amount of protection. Ensure you apply to exposed areas more often. It is also important to use separate sunscreens for the body and face as facial sun screens are formulated specifically for facial skin which differs from your body’s skin.”
I love the fact that it’s an easy to use spray with no residue. It feels wonderfully light on the skin and it’s a breeze to apply. Spray it at about 15cm distance from the skin and then gently massage it for an even coverage.
Eucerin Sun Spray Transparent Dry Touch Sensitive Protect SPF 50+, £16.99 RRP, available at Boots
“I have not seen much research on the effects of sunlight on hair but we all know blondes get blonder in the summer so there is a clear bleaching effect of the sun on hair color.”
Says Dr. Janet Prytowsky.
“There are cream rinses that contain sunscreen if hair bleaching is an issue. The scalp is a major concern for sunburn protection because we see lots of skin cancer on scalps. This is one reason why dermatologists are always recommending that you wear a hat! If your hair is thin, apply sunscreen directly to your scalp. Even if you have thick hair, apply sunscreen directly to cowlicks and parts where the scalp is visible. If you have children and put your daughter’s hair into cute pigtails or ponytails, sunscreen the areas where you can see the scalp. I recommend leaving your son’s hair longer in the Summer to protect the scalp and tops of the ears. So many moms think buzz cuts are the way to go for the boys because they are “cooler” in the summer heat but the sun damage tradeoff is not worth it.”
A great way to help protect your hair from sun damage is to use haircare with UV protection. It will help with sun bleaching and ensuing damage, preventing hair from going overly dry and brittle, helping to keep it soft and supple. A favourite choice for everyday use is Philip Kingsley Daily Damage Defense. This leave-in spray is quick and easy to apply and provides lightweight yet intensive hair conditioning. It helps to improve manageability and reduce breakage, as well as protecting hair against damage caused by heat styling and environmental elements. Philip Kingsley also has an After-Sun Scalp Mask which is a great post sun exposure care treatment to soothe and cool the scalp.
Philip Kingsley Daily Damage Defence, £18.00 for 125ml, at Philip Kingsley
The Korres Hair Sun Protection spray is also a personal favourite to take on sunny holidays. It can be used on dry or wet hair and it gives water-resistant UV protection that prevents hair colour from fading. Still, just like any other sunscreen, don’t forget to reapply throughout the day to keep getting the best protection. Red Vine polyphenols and Sunflower extract, efficiently protect hair from UVA photo-oxidation (sun bleaching). With Aloe and Provitamin B5 to help keep hair hydrated and soft, this fab product is also vegan friendly and smells lovely.
Korres Red Vine Hair Sun Protection, £12.00 RRP, available at Korres.com
“The chemical in spray tans or creams has been around a long time and has been viewed mostly as being safe. However, there needs to be more research done. Some studies suggest it is carcinogenic to respiratory/airway cells so be careful not to inhale it if you get sprayed. It may also have adverse effects on skin cells because it may get into deeper living cells in the skin (we used to think the extent of penetration of dihydroxy acetone was limited to just the outer dead cells.) Therefore, I recommend only getting sunless tans for periodic special occasions or not at all. Regular cosmetic dependence on sunless tans is unwise until more research is done – there may be negative effects on your health.”
According to most research, DHA is only dangerous if inhaled or ingested. Most DHA (or glycerone) used in skincare is naturally derived from plants like beetroot or sugar cane. When applied in low concentrations, such as those in self-tanners, and only used topically, DHA is still believed to not be toxic or carcinogenic. If using a spray tan, be careful to wear protective clothing for the mouth, eyes, and nose to prevent inhalation.
Safer alternatives to spray tans and tanning beds are made to be used at home. Still, as with all things, moderation is key. Leave the self-tanning for special occasions or if you really can’t get any sun on your skin, even with high SPF, without risk of sunburn or opt for sun makeup. This will enhance and existing tan or give you a wash-off tan that will last only until your next shower.
Some of our favourite options are the Cocoa Brown Instant Tan Gel and the Leighton Denny Bronzing Shimmer.
The Cocoa Brown Instant Tan Bronzing Gel comes in both a matte and a shimmer finish, so you can choose which you prefer, depending on the occasion. Personally, I prefer matte during the day, as it looks more natural, but the shimmer is great for a night out. Since it’s a wash-off tan, it will last only until you next shower, but it will give you a great veil of colour all over.
Cocoa Brown by Marissa Carter Instant Tan Bronzing Gel, £6.99 RRP, available at Amazon.co.uk, Superdrug and Cloud 10 Beauty
Part of nail guru Leighton Denny’s new body tan range Sun Believable, the Highlight Me Bronzing Shimmer is a golden veil for your skin. Packed with gold and copper micro-light reflective particles it’s an amazing pick-me-up for the skin that leaves it looking radiant and glowing. The subtle, golden highlights accentuate natural skin tones, making it great for all year round. Beautiful over tan skin for a gorgeous highlight!
Leighton Denny Sun Believable Highlight Me Bronzing Shimmer, £12.50 at LD-Boutique.com
“After sun exposure it is important to shower off the water resistant sunscreens so your pores can “breathe” again. In addition, treatment of any sunburn areas should also begin. Products with vitamin D are anti-inflammatory and with vitamin A will help restore sun damaged skin. (Note that A&D ointment found in the baby products section at drug stores would help but the odor and greasy feel may not be to your liking).”
A great tan needs good care to be maintained. In place of your usual body moisturiser, you might want to opt for After-Sun care products, since they tend to have more soothing, cooling, anti-inflammatory and replenishing ingredients to help heal skin that might be slightly sun damaged or just naturally tanned. The right after-sun care will also help prolong your tan for longer and prevent skin from peeling.
An absolute fave is the QMS Medicosmetics Hydro Foam Mask, with silk proteins and hyaluronic acid, it replenishes moisture levels, leaves skin hydrated and silky soft and with anti-inflammatory Jojoba oil to calm the skin from sunburn. I love the texture of the lightweight foam that instantly soaks into the skin and feels like a cloud on the skin! When applying, allow it to sink into the skin and leave for 15 minutes. Remove with a face cloth or leave overnight. Great for face and body.
QMS Medicosmetics Hydro Foam Mask, £46.00 RRP, available at Liberty and qmsmedicosmetics.com
And for a cooling treat, the Sesderma Hidraloe Gel is the perfect choice. Hydrating, cooling, soothing and refreshing, this aloe gel is great after any kind of sun exposure, including in winter (great for winter sports lovers, to relieve skin from wind, snow and cold burn). This light texture is quickly absorbed and relieves redness and soreness almost instantly. Aloe is also anti-inflammatory and helps heal sun damaged skin. Because it’s 100% pure Aloe Vera, it’s also great for everyday use on other skin conditions or after shaving or waxing. It’s a product I keep around the house all year long because it’s so multi-purpose.
Sesderma Hidraloe Aloe Gel, £18.20 RRP, available at sesderma.co.uk