The notion of getting a tan has certainly changed over the decades. If you ever used a “tanning lotion” you probably recall the little girl on the Coppertone ads with her bottom exposed when her little puppy tugged at her swimsuit bottom. That “tan line” promoted a healthy golden tan which is achieved by using a suntan lotion. Today, that company will never promote getting a tan, nor will any other like them.
You may even remember those reflective things that we stuck under our chins to ensure the sun’s rays get properly bounced up onto the neck. Show me a person who used one of those things and I’ll show you a person with delicate neck skin that’s taken a beating. Many of us used the so-called “suntan lotions” with an SPF of 2 or 4, believing it would block the “harmful” rays that burn the skin while letting the “good” rays in to gently tan our skin to a golden brown.
Those days are gone now that we have the facts. We are now aware that we can’t “sort” tanning rays from burning rays with a suntan lotion. Low SPF lotions are no longer considered a “safe tanning” method. The sun’s rays are harmful to the skin and you can’t separate good rays from bad rays. Suntan lotions have given way to sunscreens and sunblocks which protect from the sun’s harmful rays. Studies by groups like the Skin Cancer Foundation have provided us with the facts – there are no good sun rays for your skin.
SPF is a calculation used to give us an idea of how much longer it would take our skin to become red with the protection versus without the protection. For instance, if you use an SPF 15, it would take 15 times longer to burn with it than without it. But, don’t spend too much time on the math. Just know that you must start each day by applying protection against the sun’s harmful rays.
You may already be aware of how to apply sun protection when you go to the beach, pool, or park. You’ll use a higher SPF and reapply it often. Experts recommend an initial application, followed by a second application in 30 minutes, then reapplying every 2 hours, and again after swimming or exercising. What you may not realize is dermatologists and estheticians recommend daily application even if you’re not going out to play. Use at least an SPF 15 product during your daily regimen.
It’s easier than ever to get that daily application of sun protection into your daily regimen. There are many skin care product lines now that include an SPF 15 or higher right in their moisturizer. If you’re using a daily moisturizer, you might as well use one with sun protection built right in to make your skin care easier.
Many women who wear foundation each day can simplify their morning regimen of skin care by applying foundation that contains SPF protection. There are liquid as well as mineral, or powder, foundations that contain a good measure of SPF protection. If you don’t want to add another step to your morning skin routine, this may be a good option for you.
It’s been decades since we saw that little girl’s tan lines. Coppertone has learned right along with the rest of us that taking care of our skin means protecting it from the sun, and not getting a so-called “healthy tan.” Coppertone has long ago removed the “tan line” from the little girl and no longer promotes any kind of sun tanning.
There is sun damage you can see, like sunburn, and sun damage that is not seen when you expose your skin unprotected to the sun. Protect your skin daily to prevent exposure to these dangers. You can have fun in the sun, go to the park, the beach, the lake – just be smart and protect your delicate skin. Talk to your dermatologist or skin care professional and find out what type of sun protection product is right for your skin. You’re not only protecting your skin from wrinkles and sunburn – you’re protecting your health!