Friday, July 19, 2013

Protect Your Skin from Damage!

Well, it's summertime and everyone is ready to get their youthful glow back in the form of a tan. But at Barbizon of Akron, we have to ask... Is the risk of premature aging, skin damage and skin cancer worth it?

A tan, whether you get it on the beach, in a bed, or through incidental exposure, is bad news, any way you acquire it. Tans are caused by harmful ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun or tanning lamps, and if you have one, you've sustained skin cell damage.

No matter what you may hear at tanning salons, the cumulative damage caused by UV radiation can lead to premature skin aging (wrinkles, lax skin, brown spots, and more), as well as skin cancer. Indoor ultraviolet (UV) tanners are 74 percent more likely to develop melanoma than those who have never tanned indoors.

A new study has revealed an alarming rise in melanoma among people aged 18 to 39: over the past 40 years, rates of this potentially deadly skin cancer grew by 800 percent among young women and 400 percent among young men.

Here, a test subject at Canfield Scientific sits for a VISIA® Complexion Analysis System scan, which compares the skin as it appears in normal lighting to ultraviolet and digitally processed images that show subsurface spots and skin damage.

So, how do you protect yourself? Block out UV rays!

Cover up: Wear tightly-woven clothing that blocks out light. Try this test: Place your hand between a single layer of the clothing and a light source. If you can see your hand through the fabric, the garment offers little protection.

Use sunscreen: A sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 15 blocks 93 percent of UV rays. You want to block both UVA and UVB rays to guard against skin cancer. Be sure to follow application directions on the bottle.

Wear a hat: A wide brim hat  is ideal because it protects the neck, ears, eyes, forehead, nose, and scalp.

Wear UV absorbent shades: Sunglasses don't have to be expensive, but they should block 99 to 100 percent of UVA and UVB radiation.

Limit exposure: UV rays are most intense between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. If you're unsure about the sun's intensity, take the shadow test: If your shadow is shorter than you, the sun's rays are the day's strongest.

Opt Out: Opt out of UV tanning and opt into sunless tanning. You can get the same tanned look without the skin damage.

We hope that you will all think about the negative consequences of tanning when weighing the outcomes. In the end, we at Barbizon of Akron don't feel like it's worth the risk. Pale skin is healthy skin!