If there’s one thing we can’t stress the importance of enough for your overall health, it is proper sun care! The sun gives off long wave ultraviolet A (UVA) and short wave ultraviolet B (UVB) rays, both of which can cause short and long term skin damage. Leaving your skin unprotected in the sun can lead to various issues ranging in severity from premature aging to skin cancer. The more intense the sun is on a given day, the more intense the UV rays and the more you need to protect yourself. As a general rule of thumb, the sun is typically strongest between 10am and 4pm each day.
The first item on your shopping list when heading out into the sun is a strong sunscreen packed with UV protection. The amount of SPF in your sunscreen really depends upon your skin tone and how easily you tan but everyone needs some type of protection. You should never use anything that has less than 15 SPF in it, but also note that anything above SPF 50 is irrelevant since it doesn’t offer any extra protection, according to the FDA. Exposure to the sun should also be limited daily and careful attention should be paid to the UV index in the daily weather report. Be sure to choose a sunscreen that is water-resistant so that you will not lose that protection when spending time in a pool, lake, river, or ocean.