How to Protect Your Skin From the Summer Sun

Ah, summer. All over the country, people are ready for some serious fun after such a long, drawn-out winter. Here in California, we’ve got it a little easier – lazy days at the pool with a glass of pinot grigio and the latest issue of Vogue are always an option – but the return of summer means that far more of us will be heading to the beaches and soaking up the sun in the coming weeks and months.

It’s time for us to have a little talk with you about protecting your health, your skin and your overall beauty when the weather gets hot and the surf starts calling. Everybody knows that sunscreen is important, but do we use it every time, and do we use it in the right way? What else can we do to keep our skin looking young this season?

You’ve Missed a Spot. People sometimes forget that how Woman With Sunscreamyou apply your sunscreen is almost as important as putting it on in the first place. When you head out to the beach, the theme parks or the pool, apply SPF-15 sunblock before leaving home. In fact, apply it before you even get dressed so that you cover the areas that we often overlook. It’s easy to skip areas of your neck and shoulders for fear of ruining your favorite blouse or shirt, but that’s just not worth an unsightly burn. Be sure to reapply your sunscreen every two hours, especially if you’re swimming or sweating.

It’s a Cover-Up. Sunlight is most intense in the mid-afternoon, so if you’ll be outdoors during the sun’s peak hours (between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.), a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses will protect you from the worst our local star can dish out. The hat provides shade for your face and protects sensitive areas like the skin around your eyes. Of course another perk to adding a big hat and sunglasses to your beach attire is that you’re going to look ultra chic. And because wrinkling in that area can make us look older than we are, wearing stylishly oversized glasses is one of the best things you can do for your eyes. Quality sunglasses block 100% of UV light, and that means that they’ll even protect youfrom cataracts.

Plan for the Unexpected. How do you make sure your skin is safe for those spontaneous pool parties you keep getting inviting you to when you’re out and about running errands? People too often forget that a moisturizer with SPF will help keep your skin safe no matter where your whims take you. Our H2V “Protect” moisturizer is light enough to use every day without clogging your pores, and even though the texture is light, with a rating of SPF 15, this moisturizer offers solid sun protection.

Plant Power. If you burn easily and you’re really concerned about sun exposure, you can also take a sun pill or “heliocare” supplement. These supplements contain polypodium leucotomo, a fern extract that gives you a little extra protection from UV rays. This substance can even reduce redness after you’ve been out in the sun all day. It’s not a replacement for sunscreen, but it can help.

When it comes to protecting our skin from the ravages of the summer sun, it can be all too easy to cut corners. It can be hard to get serious about skin protection when on some deep level we all crave a gorgeous tan. Just remember that moderation is key, and that while a tan will turn heads for a few months, with young, healthy looking skin you’ll shine all year long.

What do you do to keep your skin safe from the summer sun? We’d love to read your beauty secrets in the comment section below.