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5 things you should know about the sun and its effect on your skin

In a country like Greece with sunshine on most days of the year and knowing the damaging effect of the sun on our skinprotection in necessary every day and every season.

However, especially during summer where most of us spend many hours on the beach, sunscreen should be our closest companion. Let’s not forget that it is also important to avoid our exposure to sun during the hours that the rays are most strong. Let’s look at ten of the most frequently asked questions about the sun and their answers.

How will I choose the best sunscreen?

Choose a sunscreen with high sun protection index, at least SPF 30 hypoallergenic, water and sweat resistant according to your skin colour. Keep in mind that no matter the allegations no sun protection product provides complete protection from the ultra violet radiation.

What is the correct use of sunscreen?

One should use sunscreen at least 20 minutes before exposure to the sun. Pay special attention to sensitive areas such as ears, nose, lips, palms, feet and head for men who are bald. One should reapply after two hours or earlier if one swims or plays in the sand.

Does the shade from umbrellas, trees or clouds protect me from the sun?

The sun rays pass through umbrellas more or less depending on the material used and its colour. The same happens with trees and their leaves as well as clouds. Also the sun reflects on the sand and water so their shade is not enough and it is necessary to apply sunscreen or wear a t-shirt. Finally around 95% of ultra violet radiation passes through the water of the sea meaning even when swimming our body isn’t protected from the ultra violet radiation.

I am already tanned. Do I need to use sunscreen?

Even in these circumstances one should use sunscreen. The increased amount of melanin may protect you from burns but not from the negative effects of the sun such as photo aging and skin cancer. If you are already tanned you can use sunscreen with a smaller sun protection index.

Do self tanning products and solarium protect me from the sun?

Self tanning products essentially dye the skin, therefore in any condition they do not offer protection from the sun. The same goes for fake tan from solarium which according to specialists is not healthy, does not protect from exposure of the sun and it is not safer than sunbathing.

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