Friday, August 7, 2009

Sunscreen Extreme

The two pictures above speak louder than any words I could ever write. Maybe, just maybe, I used to like laying out in the sun a little bit too much. I was never the girl slathering on baby oil while lying atop a reflective beach blanket. Nope, no Crisco and foil for me. I thought I was much smarter to catch the sun's love while floating in the ocean (um, also reflective) from a comfy raft while wearing absolutely no sunscreen at all. Oh, and then maintaining my natural tan with daily fake-n-bake visits to the tanning salon.

If going to skin care school and learning about the damage the sun can cause the skin didn't cure me of my sun-tanning addiction I'd say getting diagnosed with pre-melanoma on my left shin - two different times - nipped any residual desire in the bud. Yeah, you can look at that picture too. What a pretty shin I have now.

These days you won't find me in the sun at all. In fact, now you'll find me in a pleasant spot in the shade, lathered in sunscreen, wearing a light sweater and a floppy hat.

The recent warm weather in Seattle plus a recent trip to Hawaii has made me even more of a sunscreen expert. So in addition to staying well-shaded and covered up, let me share a couple personally tested tips.

Sunless Spray Tanning - Get the suntanned look without the sun. Wendy Smith of Divine Tan comes right to your home to spray you with the most natural, even, odor-free, sunless spray tan imaginable. Plus she's a freak about chemicals so she uses the most organic products she can find.

Super Duper Sunscreen - I use Dermaware's Screenplay on a daily basis. It is an SPF 30, contains zinc and titanium dioxide which absorb the sun's rays and reflect them like a mirror, and lasts all day!

Custom Blended Mineral Make-Up - Sugar & Swank's custom blended mineral make-up has a natural SPF 26 and literally reflects the sun away from the skin like a mirror. Not only does it last all day, but it gets more and more creamy and dewy the longer you wear it. It isn't 100% waterproof, but it lasts well in the water as long as you don't directly rub it off with your hands or a towel.

Before 10 and After 4
Let's face it, staying entirely outside of the sun isn't much fun. Experts say that before 10 am and after 4 pm are the safest hours to be outside, so simply try get things done in the early morning or late afternoon. Even more important, skip noontime outdoor activities that put you directly in the sun.

Post-Sun Peel Party - Don't worry if you got too much sun. Just come into Sugar & Swank for a peel at the end of summer to help eliminate the damage. Look at the difference in my skin after I started peeling regularly. (Plus an "after" picture of me which shows what a difference the custom blended minerals make.)

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