If we told you that you already probably had one of the most powerful preventative anti-ageing products ever produced in your bathroom cupboard already, would you believe us? Well, here’s the thing – you actually probably do. Sunscreen; The best anti aging skincare product you didn’t know you already had!… Yes, it’s the not overly sexy, and pretty much unassuming product, that virtually everyone has at home. “Really?” you ask, it’s like trying to understand that the nicest but most plain person in the room is actually a super model in their spare time. We know!! But give us a moment here to explain. And if you don’t have a good sunscreen with SPF50 it’s time to go shopping.
Most of us know the importance of protecting the skin against harmful UV rays (UVR) to avoid sunburn and skin damage. We also understand that even on cloudy days and throughout winter, particularly in Australia sunscreens are just as important, since around 80% of the sun’s rays can pass through clouds and still burn the skin. According to the cancer council in Australia, our country has one of the world’s highest incidences of skin cancer, and it is THE most common type of cancer diagnosed in Australia. Shocking but accurate data shows that in Australia, by the age of 70, approximately 2 out of every 3 people will be diagnosed with some type of skin cancer. Those odds are definitely not in our favour, but thankfully the application of sunscreen to exposed skin on a daily basis, cuts your risk of melanoma by around 50%. Ok, but what about the anti-ageing part we were promising … it’s coming!
UV Light: how it damages and prematurely ages the skin
There are 3 UV light rays, UVA, UVB and UVC.
What are UVA rays and what does UVA do to the skin?
UVA rays have a long wavelength which penetrates through the epidermis into the dermis, they can even penetrate through glass, which is why wearing sunscreen all day, every day, even indoors and driving a car is so important. UVA rays are responsible for skin cancers, skin ageing, pigmentation, the degradation of the collagen network in the skin which leads to wrinkles over time, and they can cause problems for the body’s immune system. It’s easy to remember that UVA, A is for ageing.
What are UVB rays and what does UVB do to the skin?
UVB rays cause the skin to burn, tan and thicken, these reactions are the body’s self defence mechanism against further damage. These rays penetrate the very upper layers of the epidermis and specifically UVB disrupts the DNA in skin cells. If the cell is unable to repair itself with the assistance of the skin’s various cell repair mechanisms, cell mutation can be triggered. This is what can lead to the development of skin cancers. These rays can be filtered and don’t penetrate through glass. UVB, B is for burning.
UVB rays have a shorter wavelength and don’t travel as deep into the skin compared to UVA, but they are still damaging to the skin. UVB is associated with the SPF in the sunscreen you use. It tells you how long your skin would take to redden and start burning versus wearing no protection at all. But remember the time of day, location and that particular day’s UV rating also come into play, so this calculation is just a guide. For example, if you naturally start to redden in the sun with no protection after 10 minutes, multiply 10 minutes by the SPF in the product you are using to give you an approximate guide on the minutes you should be protected for.
Sunburn calculator examples
- 5 minutes (the time it takes for your particular skin to burn with no sunscreen on) x SPF15 = 75 minutes before your skin would start to burn whilst wearing SPF15
- 5 minutes (the time it takes for your particular skin to burn with no sunscreen on) x SPF 50 = 250 minutes before your skin would start to burn whilst wearing SPF50
- 10 minutes (the time it takes for your particular skin to burn with no sunscreen on) x SPF 50 = 500 minutes before you would start to burn whilst wearing SPF50.
- 20 minutes (the time it takes for your particular skin to burn with no sunscreen on) x SPF30 = 600 minutes before your skin would start to burn whilst wearing SPF30
What are UVC rays and what does UVC do to the skin?
UVC rays are blocked by the ozone layer before they enter the earth’s atmosphere, however with the depletion of this layer, UVC rays are becoming increasingly concerning.
What does broad spectrum sunscreen do?
A broad-spectrum sunscreen protects against both UVA and UVB rays. In this way your skin is protected from the longer UVA wavelengths that cause accelerated skin ageing, pigmentation problems and collagen breakdown, and against UVB rays that burn and cause skin cancers. Aesthetics Rx sunscreens are all broad spectrum.
What is the best sunscreen rating in Australia?
SPF50+ is the highest sunscreen rating in Australia. Prior to 2012, the highest SPF rating in Australia was SPF30+ but the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) produced new standards for sunscreens available in Australia and upped the rating to SPF50+. The SPF50+ provides the same UVB protection with additional UVA protection.
Can sunscreen slow down skin ageing?
Inevitably the skin ages over the passage of time and we obviously cannot stop that process. But we can prevent accelerated skin ageing and the overall appearance of an aged skin caused by sun exposure. An aged appearance is usually attributed to the visual sum effect of lines and wrinkles, pigmentation, loss of elasticity, sagging skin and a leathery texture. The daily use of sunscreen is effective in preventing all these problems, and in that sense, sunscreen is one of the most powerful ‘anti-ageing’ products anyone could possibly use on their skin. If you are not using sunscreen every single day, you are missing out on the best strategy in the fight against the appearance of accelerated skin ageing. You could be spending a small fortune on your skincare serums and creams every month; it makes logical sense that you would also use a sunscreen to maximise the effects of your skincare regime and protect against the development of lines, wrinkles, dark spots, hyperpigmentation and a dull, sagging complexion. Wearing the right sunscreen consistently every day, may even reverse the signs of accelerated skin ageing, thanks to its regenerative processes and cell repair mechanisms! We’ve made that easy to achieve with a variety of textures and types of sunscreens.
What is the best Sunscreen for me at Aesthetics Rx?
Face and Body Sunscreen SPF50 - This is our lightest textured sunscreen and is suitable for the face and the body. We love this product for days when you’ll be outdoors in direct sunlight, swimming and exercising. Plus, this sunscreen has patented technology that let’s through some of the UVB light that our bodies naturally use to make vitamin D whist still providing broad spectrum protection. 200ml Face and Body $65RRP.
What is the best sunscreen at Aesthetics Rx for the face?
Ultra-Protection Sunscreen Cream with Zinc oxide SPF50+ - Perfect texture for everyday use and before make-up, this Zinc oxide-based formulation is free from chemical absorbers and fragrance. 75ml Face $65RRP.
Tinted Water-Resistant Sunscreen Cream with Zinc SPF50+ - Designed to give skin a sheer, sun kissed glow on days you want to be make-up free. It’s not makeup and it’s not designed for coverage, but it’s been tinted a medium colour that blends easily on most complexions. It’s the perfect water and perspiration resistant solution for a sheer and subtle glow, when swimming and during exercise. For everyday use, this formulation is free from chemical absorbers and fragrance and is manufactured from micronized Zinc oxide. 75ml face $65RRP
So, there you go, no excuses anymore, you need a sunscreen in your life, stat!