From the minute we step outside in the sun as as child, it gets imbedded in our mind that sunscreen is important. As babies, our mothers slather sunscreen on our faces and put big, soft hats on our head. When we’re older, we don’t step outside to play at the playground or swim at the pool without the coconut-smell of sunscreen all over our face, shoulders, arms, and legs. Eventually, as we mature into adult women, we ditch the kids Coppertone or Banana Boat sunscreen and opt for a more chic bottle…something that usually offers us a less-greasy, high SPF lotion with a high-shimmer effect on our darkened skin. We can now wear protect our skin and look great at the same time.
But ladies, let’s face it..haven’t we all, at some point in time (maybe in our early college years, or maybe just last week to play morning tennis with girlfriends), gone outside without sunscreen? Trying to get that darker tan, we’ve decided to skip the sunscreen before heading out in the sun. And most likely, our gift back from the lovely sun was a nice sunburn. A red, painful sunburn. Was it worth going outside without sunscreen? Probably not.
On a recent trip to Mexico, I didn’t want the off-white sunscreen to touch my brand new, $100 white bathing suit top. I slathered it all over my upper-body, but left out putting sunscreen on a little spot on either side of the straps on my chest. Turns out, that was a terrible idea. I ended up getting badly burned on that little area that I didn’t put any sunscreen. The lesson I learned? Never underestimate the power of the sun.
Sunscreen is incredibly important to remember to put on before going outside in any weather at any time of the year. During the fall, if you’re headed outside for a morning run, put some sunscreen on your face to protect you- even if it isn’t sunny! (Remember, the sun can still be powerful even if it is hazy or cloudy outside). In the wintertime, make sure you have sunscreen on your face before heading out to the slopes (you don’t want a funny goggle burn, do you?). During the summer on a hike in the mountains or walking through a farmers market, amusement park, or outdoor mall…don’t forget to put some sunscreen on your face, arms, and shoulders. Most importantly, when you’re at the beach or kayaking in the mountains, make sure to protect yourself with sunscreen that has a high SPF (a Broad Spectrum sunscreen with at least SPF 15, according to the FDA; however, we recommend going no lower than SPF 30) because water reflects the sun’s rays, making them more harmful.
Luckily for us women, many beauty products (like foundations and lotions) include SPF protection- so our skin is getting some protection without even having to put sunscreen on. These lotions or foundations should never fully substitute for sunscreen (especially if you’re headed to the beach for the day!), but these products do help protect our skin from the sun we may get from our “everyday” lives (lunch outside on the patio with co-workers, for example). To help make sure you will always stay protected in the sun, we recommend buying pocket-sized sunscreen (we love Kiss My Face Hot-Spots Rub On Sunscreen). Keeping a tube or bottle of pocket-sized sunscreen on you means that you’ll always have it with you, and that you can re-apply at any time. Keeping one constantly in your car, backpack, ski jacket, or purse means that you’ll have it with you at all times and can use it if you forgot to apply sunscreen at home.
Protecting your skin is important so that you can enjoy spending time outdoors. Enjoy the sun and water without harmful rays ruining your day!
How do you protect yourself from the sun on a daily basis?