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Summer Sun Safety: Tips from Island Dermatology

ID News

Summer Sun Safety: Tips from Island Dermatology

 

Now that we are in the heat of summer, protecting our skin is crucial. Don’t get us wrong—we also love the feeling of the sun’s rays warming our skin. However, getting home and realizing that you’ve soaked up a new sunburn is never fun. And according to a Skin Cancer Foundation poll, 42% of people get sunburned at least once a year! Taking the proper precautions is crucial to preventing skin cancer and reducing wrinkles and signs of aging. Thankfully, being safe in the sun is easy with the right supplies.

Island Dermatology encourages using basic sun-safety practices including consistent use of a broad-spectrum (UVA/UVB) sunscreen with an SPF of 30+. Use two tablespoons worth to cover your whole body 30 minutes before sun exposure and be sure to reapply every two hours (every 60-80 minutes if you are swimming). Our dermatologists recommend the following brands:

  • Alba Botanical, SPF 50 (Available at Whole Foods)
  • Australian Gold Botanical Sunscreen, SPF 50 (Available at Walmart and on Amazon. Reef safe!)
  • Aveeno Baby, SPF 50 (Available at Walgreens, Target, and on Amazon)
  • Banana Boat Kids or Baby Sunscreen Lotion, SPF 50 (Available at Walgreens, fragrance free)
  • Colorescience Powder Mineral Sunscreen, SPF 50 (Available in Fair, Medium, and Tan at Island Derm)
  • Epionce UltraShield Lotion, SPF 50 (Available at Island Derm, 20% off through the end of August!)

 

Additionally, you should seek shade between 10:00am and 4:00pm, when the UV index is the highest. While the highest UV radiation hits between 11:30am and 1:30pm depending on your location, the hottest part of the day is actually 3:00pm to 4:00pm. During this time you not only need to worry about sunburns, but also other heat-related illnesses such as heat stroke.

If you struggle to remember to use sunscreen consistently, consider downloading a helpful app on your phone.  Knowing when it is most important to practice sun protection and getting reminders throughout the day may help sunburns become a thing of the past. Two apps tested and recommended by our dermatologists are UVLens and UVIMate.

UVLens is a free app that shows you a live report of the UV forecast wherever you are. You can see when it is safe to be out in the sun with sunscreen, and when it is better to say inside or in the shade. Additionally, you can access personalized skin assessments to find out your burn risk and learn how often you need to apply sunscreen to stay safe. This app is designed to help people “live healthier outdoor lives.”

UVIMate is a self-proclaimed “sun safety coach” designed to track UV radiation all around the globe. You can get a reading on the UV index wherever you are at the moment, and get a forecast for the rest of the day so you can plan your exposure in relation to your risk. UVIMate recommends different types of sun protection as well as the times in which you need them the most based on your skin type. You can also set up sunscreen reminders and UV index alerts.

Combine basic sun-safety precautions like seeking the shade, keeping your skin covered, and using sunscreen consistently with these apps and get the most out of the summer–without the risk.