Preventing sun damage is the number one factor in good skin care. Sunscreens are a part of this, but not all.

There’s a number of factors that contribute enormously to skin aging, most of which we can control. Obviously we cannot control the fact that we’re getting older, however there are many other ingredients in the anti aging mix. And one of them is protection from the sun. Aging skin gets that way, in large part, from skin sun damage.

One of the biggest factors in aging skin is damage from UV radiation. For the best skin care sunscreen is essential, and today we want to look at how to protect your skin from aging from sun damage, which is an essential component of great anti aging skin care. But sunscreen, whilst important for preventing skin sun damage, is only a part of the mix.

The rays of the sun are made up of various components. If you break sunlight down you’ll find that there are various visible and invisible components of different wavelengths.

Some of the invisible components of sunlight are ultraviolet light. Ultraviolet light is the dangerous component of sunlight, and it is UV that leads to skin damage and worse, ultimately to skin cancer, or melanoma.

However aging from sunlight is even more complex than that, because there are different types of UV radiation.
Skin Care Sunscreen

UVA, UVB and UVC are the 3 types of ultraviolet radiation in sunlight. UVC isn’t of concern because it is eliminated by the atmosphere, however UVA and UVB are. It is UVB that burns your skin.

However although it is the UVB radiation that can burn your skin it is not sufficient merely to protect yourself from UVB radiation. Skin sun protection requires protection from both UVB and UVA radiation. And it is UVA radiation that is the form of ultraviolet primarily responsible for skin aging, as well as for the dangerous skin cancers.

It is not well known that the FDA does not require UVA protection in sunscreens. In the summer of 2008 only 29 percent of sunscreens offered UVA protection. The good news is that by the summer of 2009 the percentage of sunscreens offering optimum skin sun protection, mainly UVB and UVA protection rose to 70 percent. However this still means that around 30 percent of sunscreens on the market do not offer UVA protection.

And anyone using one of those sunscreens risks skin damage, more skin aging and even skin cancer. The FDA has proposed a four-star rating system for UVA protection in sunscreens and also proposed that this rating system be indicated on the labels on sunscreen bottles, however this proposal still remains simply as a proposal.

As the FDA do not require that UVA protection be indicated on the label it is a lottery as to whether or not the sunscreen that you use now does or does not offer a UVA protection.

Consumers rightly expect that sunscreens protect them from sun damage to the skin, including skin cancer and skin aging. However currently this is not necessarily the case.
Skin Care Sunscreen

Not only that but there are toxic ingredients in many sunscreens, just as there are in many anti aging products and cosmetics. For instance you’ll find oxybenzone, a hormonal disruptor, in many sunscreens. Laboratory tests have demonstrated that oxybenzone can disrupt the endocrine system and could even contribute to increasing skin cancer.

Not only that are studies by the Environmental Working Group show that around 40 percent of sunscreens can contain ingredients which break down in the sun or become unstable, and which may therefore cause the sunscreen to stop working.

And there are other concerns about sunscreens, for example that some ingredients can absorb into your blood causing allergic reactions and free radicals.

It is now well recognized that the sun can cause skin cancer. Sun damage, however, goes beyond that to being one of the major, if not the major cause of skin aging and wrinkles. As we noted at the start of this article sun damage is totally preventable, and the best anti aging prevention must include efforts to reduce or eliminate skin ageing from the effects of UV radiation. Sunscreens should only be relied on where absolutely necessary, and much effort should be made about choosing your sunscreen. Much better is to wear a long sleeved shirt and a hat or to stay out of the sun, particularly during the worst times of the day from around 11 a.m. to 3 or 4 p.m.

To practice optimum skin care sunscreen is important, but only as a last resort. Don’t get burned and you’re well on your way to much better skin.

And of course proper sun protection isn’t all there is to great anti aging prevention. Using the best (natural) anti aging products is a big part of it also, to help maintain optimum skin health.

Remember, a big part of skin aging is preventable, including skin sun damage. The other huge factor in skin aging that is totally preventable? Smoking.

It’s up to you.

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