Summer Skin Care

Summer Skin Care

A good summer skin care routine is essential to preventing sun damage that can lead to skin cancer and premature aging of your skin. The term “a healthy tan,” is in fact, not healthy at all!  As we head into the hottest days of summer, here are some tips to keep your skin looking great!

Let’s first start with sunscreen. A broad-spectrum sunscreen with SPF of at least 30+ is vital. I prefer mineral sunscreens, but any broad-spectrum sunscreen is fine. I recommend an oil free facial sunscreen made specifically for the face and a general sunscreen for the body. Powder and stick sunscreen options are available, so find a brand and consistency you like.

It’s also important to remember sunscreen should be reapplied to all exposed areas every one to two hours. To avoid saying, “Oops, I forgot my sunscreen,” consider these tips:

Use a facial moisturizer with sunscreen every morning after washing your face, and keep bottles of sunscreen in each vehicle and in your purse or backpack.

Investing in some sun protective clothing is also very worthwhile. A wide brimmed hat, sunglasses and ultraviolet protection factor (UPF) clothing are at the top of our list! Any clothing that covers your skin is better than exposed skin when it comes to sun protection, but UPF clothing is even better. It is designed with fabric that protects your skin from harmful UV radiation while also being lightweight and keeping you cool. A wide brimmed hat is a must and better than a baseball hat, because it protects the tops of your ears and back of your neck.

It’s important to realize that any amount of sun exposure can significantly increase your risk of skin cancers and premature aging of your skin. UV radiation from the sun changes the DNA in our skin and allows mutations to occur that can lead to skin cancer. Sun damage in the skin occurs anytime you get a tan! It is especially important to keep children and grandchildren protected with sunscreen, hats and clothing. Much of the sun damage that occurs as people age is a result of sun exposure and sunburns that happened during childhood.

I hope these tips can help you and your family have a wonderful summer. Get out there and enjoy the beauty of nature, but don’t forget to protect your skin.

This article originally appeared in the July 21, 2019, edition of The Herald-Dispatch.


Erin Bateman, PA-C

Erin Bateman is a board-certified physician assistant with Marshall Dermatology. She specializes in adult and pediatric dermatology including the treatment of psoriasis, acne and atopic dermatitis.