Tag Archives: sun protection

Five Steps to Treating Sun Damage & Preventing it in the Future

Unless you’ve hidden inside all summer long, you most likely spent a bit too much time basking in the sun. I’ve done a pretty good job avoiding sunburn this summer, but I know I’ve had a bit of sun damage and I wanted to know what I could do to help treat it. As always, the lovely Celeste filled me in on five steps I could take to help treat and prevent sun damage.

With school starting soon, August marks the unofficial end of summer for people in many parts of the country. I hope your season was filled with relaxation and a trip to your favorite sun-filled location. I also hope you wore (and wear daily) SPF.

Even with proper sunscreen application, you may have experienced sun damage this summer. Freckles, moles, wrinkles and uneven skin tone are signs of sun damage. There are few simple steps to treat sun-damaged skin and prevent future damage:

  1. I can’t emphasize this enough: protect the skin on a daily basis using a full-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher. If you are active throughout the day, remember to reapply your sunscreen.
  2. Powerful antioxidants like vitamin C help protect the skin against UV rays, too.  C boosts the effectiveness of your sunscreen, so I urge you to apply a C serum daily underneath your sunscreen moisturizer.
  3. You should resurface the skin on a consistent basis.  Resurfacing is a way to exfoliate the skin that gently dissolves dead skin cells, some of which are likely to be discolored on the skin’s surface.  Consistent resurfacing not only evens the skin tone, it helps combat aging and balances the skin’s pH for hydrated, healthy skin.
  4. Two products I use to treat sun damage and dark spots are from Skin Authority: Hyperpigmentation Treatment and Brightening Serum.
  5. I urge you to visit your dermatologist annually to have any moles examined. Your physician can also recommend laser treatments to help with discoloration and aging caused by the sun.

If you have some spare time, make sure to check out Celeste’s other articles: Seven Tips for Skin Care Success in 2015The Skin Care Basics | Face Oils for Acne Prone Skin | Skin Care for Eyes | Men’s Skin Care | Vitamin C Serums | Three Steps to Sexy Skin.

Photo: Olin Gilbert; Disclosure

About the author: With two decades in the beauty and skin care industries, Celeste Hilling is the Founder, CEO and Product Formulator for Skin Authority. Skin Authority is respected for developing pure and powerful products without the use of parabens, added fragrance, dyes or animal testing. More on www.skinauthority.com, Facebook at Skin Authority, Twitter @SkinAuthority and @MissSkin.

UV Protection…for your Eyes?!

We all know it’s best to play it safe with sunscreen during the hot and hazy summer months (and year round!), but did you know your eyes need sun protection too? Your eyes are at risk for damage and signs of early aging due to UV exposure, even if you can’t tell right away like you would if your skin gets sunburned.

So what can you do to protect your peepers? Well, it’s not just about wearing sunglasses (but that’s a good start!).

Listen and Learn
Find out what you can do to protect your eyes and your skin on the new BlogTalkRadio edition of Healthy VisionTM with Dr. Val Jones*.  Dermatologist and AVEENO spokesperson Jeanine Downie, M.D., joins Dr. Val and Stephen Cohen, O.D., past president of the Arizona Optometric Association, to discuss the importance of protecting your entire body from the sun’s dangerous UV rays.

It’s an interesting podcast, so listen up at the link below!

Listen to internet radio with HEALTHY VISION on Blog Talk Radio



*Episode created by AVEENO and ACUVUE Brand Contact Lenses
Photo: Jenny Erickson

Sparkling Sun Protection: Hawaiian Tropic Shimmer Effect Lotion Sunscreen

Mother Nature must have gotten the memo that Memorial Day Weekend was the kick off to summer, because all of a sudden we’ve been experiencing balmy weather.  And with soaring temps comes intense, damaging sun rays, so it’s more important than ever to protect skin with SPF.

This year, instead of slathering on ho hum sun protection, give your skin an instant boost with Hawaiian Tropic® Shimmer Effect Lotion Sunscreen.

Available in SPF 20 and 40, this new shimmering sunscreen lotion claims to be the first of its kind, combining instant radiance from shimmering mica particles with all-important UVA and UVB protection. And the best part is that the lotion boasts Hawaiian Tropic’s heavenly classic coconut scent, which is sure to elicit visions of the beach with just one sniff.

I tested out the new Shimmer Effect SPF 40 sunscreen myself during a particularly sunny day at First Landing beach in Virginia to see how it held up.  At first, I didn’t think that it was any different than the regular Hawaiian Tropic, because it comes out of the bottle looking milky white.

But the moment I began rubbing it into my skin, the shimmer particles seemed to come alive.  Teeny, tiny gold flecks spun the sun’s rays into a glimmering mirage right on my arm (or my hand in this picture).


The shimmer makes your skin just glow!

I have to admit — while I absolutely LOVE the shimmer myself, it might be a bit over the top for the faint of heart.  One application looks subtle and sheer, but after the third application throughout the day (remember to reapply sunscreen every two hours or sooner if you get wet!), I somewhat resembled a disco ball.  The mica particles really stick to your skin, and while the sun protection powers may have worn off after a dip in the ocean, the shimmer stayed strong as ever.  In fact, after thoroughly sudsing up in the shower post-beach, I still noticed the small gold flecks lingering on my arm.

As for the sun protection, Hawaiian Tropic Shimmer Effect Sunscreens stand up to the test.  And in all, the shimmer is a fantastic way to help camouflage skin imperfections and adds a touch of glamour to your sun protection routine.

Have you tried the new Hawaiian Tropic Shimmer Effect Sunscreens? If not yet, do you see shimmer in your future?


High Fashion, Low Maintenance: Stock up on Sun Protection

Our style mantra: Fashion and beauty are for everyone, no matter how busy your schedule or how small your budget may be. We represent the fashionista who has places to go, people to see, or just likes to sleep in a few extra hours. There’s no reason to run to class in sweats and unblushed cheeks when glamour can be achieved with just a little extra effort. Check here as Chelsea unveils quick tricks and perfect products that can update your look in a hot second, without breaking your budget.

Ever since the thermometer hit above freezing, I cannot seem to get summer off my mind. Since everyone’s favorite season isn’t here just yet, there is still time to stock up on some summer necessities.  As always, the number one accessory for summer is SPF.  The sun is about to get stronger and it is never to soon to start using some sun protection.

Check out some of my favorite summer sun products below.  You will not want to step out in the sun without some of these in your beach bag.

1.  Supergoop Everyday UV Slim Travel Tube, $12

Not only does this slim tube travel well, but it also offers powerful UV protection and unbeatable moisture.

2.  Supergoop Sunscreen Swipes, $34

Not a fan of goop?  Supergoop offers quick and easy sunscreen wipes, specially formulated for sensitive skin.

3.  Sephora Perfecting Tinted Moisturizer, $21

Protect you skin from the powerful summer rays and the dry summer heat with this SPF 20 moisturizer.  You can even deepen your tan with one of five shades.

4. Neutrogena MoistureShine Lip Soother, $6.99

The skin on your lips is extra sensitive, but you can get a great gloss and sun protection with this lip soother.  It is available in six summery colors and an array of fruity flavors.

5.  Philosophy Turbo Booster C Powder, $35

Accidentally take in too many rays?  Reverse come of the damage with this vitamin-enriched powder designed to prevent premature aging.


6.  Warren-Tricomi Protect Organic Hair Shield, $15

Everyone knows it is important to protect your skin from harmful UV rays, but the summer sun, surf and chlorine can do just as much damage to your hair.

Sun Smarts: Are You Protecting Your Hands?

talk to the handDo you put sunscreen on your hands? No? Beware — you could be on your way to contracting a case of POLH (premature old lady hands). Kelly from Gouldylox Reviews explains three ways to avoid sun damage on your extremities.

How many times have you seen a gorgeous woman and notice that when she lifts a glass, her hands look like they belong to her mother? We all apply creams and potions to reverse the signs of aging on our face. But do you ever apply treatments, or even sunscreen, to your hands?

I don’t know about you, but my left hand is far more sun-damaged than the right, no doubt from all of the driving I do. How can you help protect your hands, so they don’t give away your true age?

The answer is easy: Wear sunscreen every day, all of the time. I know, it seems like fighting an uphill battle, with all of the hand washing we all do. But you have a few easy options to protect your hands.

1. Wear a waterproof sunscreen on the backs of your hands. Carry it with you and reapply when needed. Think of sunscreen like sunglasses for your hands. Have it ready before you go out and apply it a bit before you leave. I like this Sunblock Stick from Neutrogena. It’s easy to carry, waterproof and will stop new sunspots from forming, provided you remember to use it.

neutrogena sunblock stick

2. Don’t like the feeling of sunscreen on your hands all day? Try bareMinerals SPF 30 Natural Sunscreen. This sunscreen provides a physical sunblock from UVA and UVB rays, so you don’t have to apply it 20 minutes prior to exposure. Plus, you can keep it in your car, so you never forget to apply it when driving. The ingredients aren’t affected by extreme heat, so it won’t melt or change. You can apply it anywhere on the body and on your face. It’s fairly mess-free and a lifesaver when you find yourself outside unexpectedly.

bareminerals sunscreen

3. Treat the sun damage you already have. Look for a hand lotion that can gently reverse signs of aging. Rephase Goldie Hand Treatment is a lotion that lightens existing sunspots by using Alpha-Arbutin (not hydroquinone). Originally available in Italy, fans will be happy to know it is now for sale in the states. This lotion makes skin unbelievably soft and claims to delay the aging process. I have very dry skin, and this was one of the more helpful lotions for dryness I have experienced recently.


Do you protect your hands now? Or do you only apply sunscreen to your body at the beach? Tell me in the comments!

I purchased bareMinerals and Neutrogena. Rephase Goldie Hand Treatment samples were sent to me for the purpose of review.

SPF Safety: UVA and UVB Rays

uv raysNow that we know more about how much SPF we should use on a daily basis and why sun protection is important, this week, let’s learn a little more about the infamous acronyms UVA and UVB.

Ultraviolet — or UV — radiation is part of the electromagnetic (light) spectrum from the sun that reaches the earth. These wavelengths are shorter than visible light, making it invisible to the naked eye (remember those prisms you looked at in high school science class that decoded different ray colors?). The wavelengths are classified as UVA, UVB, or UVC (though UVC rays never reach us, since they get filtered out by the ozone), with UVA being “long wave” and UVB  “short wave” rays.

Dr. Howard Sobel, a leading cosmetic dermatologist and skincare expert in Manhattan, explains that while some believe that only UVB rays are harmful, in truth, both UVA and UVB rays are responsible for tanning your skin and causing sunburn. He asserts that UVB rays, which will penetrate windows and can cause damage even on a cloudy day, are the cause of skin cancer. What’s more, he says that even though UVA rays are less likely to cause sunburn, they can penetrate skin more deeply.

“Prolonged exposure to UVA rays will crack and shrink the collagen and elastin in your skin,” said Dr. Sobel. “This is why UVA rays are responsible for causing wrinkles, sun spots of hyperpigmentation, and saggy, leathery skin.”

Leathery skin — just the look we’re all going for, right?

To avoid looking just like your favorite Michael Kors bag, Dr. Alex Khadavi, a board certified dermatologist and Associate Professor of Dermatology at USC, says that in general, the best sunscreens are the physical blocking suncreens like Titanium Dioxide and Zinc Oxide, which block both UVA and UVB.

“The chemical sunscreens individually only address one spectrum better the other spectrum and therefore need to be mixed,” he said.

So find a broad-spectrum sunscreen, lotion up, and soak up your summer sun rays safely.

Photos: Cover – Abhishek Gaurav; UV Rays – Robert Michie

SPF Safety: Sun Protection by the Numbers

Soon, you may pay more for this...in more way than one!
Soon, you may pay more for this…in more ways than one!

Where sun protection is concerned, the numbers can really add up.  Check out these interesting numbers about sun safety from some of the nation’s leading authorities.

0: The number of “healthy” tans (any tan signifies sun damage)
-The American Cancer Society

1: Ounce of sunscreen that should be applied before going outside (about the size of a shot glass)
-The Skin Cancer Foundation

2:  Hours that pass when you then need to reapply sunscreen for adequate protection (sooner if you heavily perspire or get wet)*

6: The minimum UV Index forecast number that triggers a UV Alert (issued only when the UV Index forecast is also higher than normal statistically — at or above the 95th percentile — for that date)
– The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency SunWise Program

10: Tax percentage on indoor tanning proposed by Congress in the health reform bill*

15-30: Minutes before going out in the sun that you need to apply a broad spectrum sunscreen*

15: The minimum recommended SPF number to be worn in a broad spectrum sunscreen*

15: The number of minutes it can take for the sun’s UV rays to cause skin damage
-The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

17: Ingredients that are currently FDA approved that provide ultra violet protection
-The U.S. Food and Drug Administration

40: The percentage of 5-year survival rates for people diagnosed with Stage IIIC melanoma
-The American Cancer Society

8,700: Estimated number of people who will die of melanoma in 2010
-The National Cancer Institute

68,130: Estimated new cases of melanoma to be diagnosed in the U.S. during 2010
-The National Cancer Institute

*Data compiled from numerous sources

Photo: Cover – Stock Xchng user Terry_N; Sunbed – Patryk AKA Costa

SPF Safety: Are you Susceptible to Sun Damage?

This isn't the only way to get sun damage.
This isn’t the only way to get sun damage.

We all know that it’s not the best idea to lay in the sun at the beach for 10 hours straight. Or even one hour. But if you avoid direct sunlight, does that mean your skin’s safe?

According to skin-care expert and licensed esthetician Renée Rouleau, most sun damage to skin isn’t caused by basking in the sun during lazy summer days without protection. She asserts that the majority of sun damage is caused by everyday activities you might not be thinking of.

“Seventy-eight percent of all the sun damage that occurs in a lifetime is from incidental exposure…driving in the car, walking to the mailbox, gardening,” she says. “During these times of incidental exposure, you may think you’re not outside long enough to get any kind of sun damage — think again. Every time the sun sees your skin, you are increasing how fast your skin ages.”

So how do you avoid sun damage short of wearing your winter ski mask while watering the plants? The answer is right under your sunburned nose: SPF.

Renee Rouleau SPFRouleau, who sells her own Daily Protection SPF 30, firmly believes that everyone should be wearing a minimum of SPF 15 all over each and every day.  And the best way to do that, she says, is by wearing a moisturizer with broad spectrum SPF (blocking UVA and UVB rays) built right in.

“The key to protecting your skin in the sun is to re-apply your sunscreen generously at least every two hours,” advises Rouleau. “A little dab won’t do ya…you need to slather it on. The same SPF number rules for the body as face — minimum of 15.”

And there are no shortcuts to SPF safety. Rouleau says that swiping on a higher number SPF doesn’t necessarily mean you can avoid reapplying it as often.

“The truth is an SPF 30 only offers four percent more protection than an SPF 15.  As you get up in the higher numbers (SPF 45, 50, 70 +) that percentage comes down, but you’re also exposing your skin to more chemicals which might result in a negative reaction on the skin.”

The lesson here? Everyone is susceptible to sun damage, so don’t skimp on SPF, and reapply often — even if you’re not planning on spending time in the sun.

Photos: Sunbather – Matthew Bowden; SPF – Renee Rouleau

Beauty and the Bride: Fun in the Sun, and the Lines to Prove it

Similar to the tale of the Beauty and the Beast, Beauty and the Bride (BATB) will examine a relationship fraught with mistrust, deception, fear, and hopefully, a happy ending.  BeautyXposé will follow BATB as she traverses the perilous landscape of wedding-day beauty leading up to her September nuptials.  Have a question for BATB?  A topic you’d like her to cover?  A conspiracy you’ve uncovered in the Wedding Industrial Complex (WIC) you’d like exposed?  Email her at: beautyandthebride@beautyxpose.com.

Eager for the hot summer sun!

Eager for the hot summer sun!

Here in New England, we’ve been getting some crazy weather (as usual).  Last week it was 45 degrees.  Today it was 92.  Seriously.  It was so warm this weekend, Anne and I jetted around town with the top down on her convertible.  In April.  In New England.

For those who don’t live here, or are more accustomed to climates that are temperate or even consistent, please understand that we usually get three seasons: Really Cold, Muddy and Cold, and Wicked Hot and Humid.  That’s really it.  We’ll get three days of beautiful leaf-peeping weather in late September, but otherwise those three seasons are all we get.

Should BATB stick to the shade?

Should BATB stick to the shade?

Needless to say, we’ve all be running around in this beautiful weather, unsure of what to do with ourselves, revealing our winter-pale legs to the world for the first time since last August, and grinning from ear to ear.  Despite my hard-core seasonal allergies, I’ve been spending every possible moment enjoying this weather, especially because, since it’s New England, if I don’t watch carefully, it’ll change without me noticing.

Since it was 92 degrees today, a few of us made the earliest pilgrimage to the beach we ever have above the Mason-Dixon line.  It was GORGEOUS.  And as I lay on my beach towel, soaked in my SPF 30, I got to thinking about my newly-growing tan lines.

Oh no! What on EARTH was I going to do about those?

See – I’ve never ever worried about tan lines before.  In college, I was a swim teacher.  Outside.  For 40 hours a week, I baked.  There was nothing I could do about it.  No amount of sun screen would stop it, or for that matter stop the serious tan lines from my racer-back swimsuit.  It wasn’t the best look, but I just learned to embrace them and haven’t thought about them since.

Is she practicing "safe sun?"

Is she practicing “safe sun?”

Well, that’s just not going to do come September.  Without enough time for my tan lines to blend into my regular color between the end of summer and my nuptials, how am I going to deal with my strap lines?   I have four bathing suits in pretty consistent rotation over the summer, all with different cuts.  So not only will I have tan lines, I’ll have competing tan lines in different shades and degrees.

So what’s the best strategy for dealing with this?  Spray tanners?  Bronzing lotions?  Fake baking on top of my summer tan?  Or should I just put sheets around my deck so the neighbors can’t see in and take a few naps outside au natural?

Photo credit:  Cover image – Joanie Cahill;  Beach – Jacinto Correia; Umbrella – Craig Jewell; Legs (inside) – Gary Scott