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Summer Skin Care

It’s summer. When the clothes come off, what goes on to protect your skin?

Summertime, summertime, sum sum summertime. I love singing that ditty.

Summer brings so many changes – temperatures rise, time outdoors increases, and our wardrobe changes.

Off with long sleeves and long pants. Into short sleeves and shorter pants.

That means more exposed skin and that can mean sunburns.

When your clothes come off, what can you do to replace the protection that comes with wearing lots and lots of clothes?

Be aware of the sun’s hidden rays – those UV (ultraviolet) rays that cause sunburn and sun damage.

Most of us are aware that spending too much time in the sun or using indoor tanning beds raises our risk for skin cancer. Many of us are aware that excess UV radiation also contributes to wrinkles and looking older than our age. But few of us realize that we cause increased blood vessel expansion and skin pigmentation can become uneven.

I bet you’re thinking of sunscreen, right? That’s a good first defense. However, if it isn’t applied properly, areas can be missed. Areas like the tops of ears, back of the neck, elbows, and knees where normal flexing doesn’t mean smooth application. When my son was younger, I used to see white handprints on his back where he had applied sunscreen to his hand and just slapped his hand on his back.

There is no such thing as a "safe tan." Although many people feel more attractive with a tan, daily-unprotected sun exposure contributes to premature skin aging and increased skin cancer risks. Sunscreen should be applied every day. Incidental sun exposure slowly adds up and damages our skin.

Make sure that the sunscreen you use daily is healthy for you.

Label reading and understanding how the ingredients work together is important when choosing your healthy and effective sunscreen. For instance, making sure it includes zinc oxide for daily sun protection. Naturally derived micronized zinc oxide dries sheer and never leaves a white chalky film. If you have "age spots," more sun exposure will cause the brown spots to get darker, leaving the light spots lighter. Going out without sun protection on cloudy-cool summer days can cause sunburn.

If you are planning on going into the water, make sure your sunscreen is water repellent and that you re-apply it throughout your fun-in-the-sun day.

Remember your lips. Your moisturizer needs to have sunscreen in it as well.

Summertime fun doesn’t need to end in sunburn pain anywhere. Remember, when you uncover your skin, keep on protecting it with natural, safe and effective products.

Dr. Stephanie Stanfield is a renowned wellness advocate and has a Ph.D. in Energy Medicine and a Th.D in Spiritual Counseling. Her specialty is in helping those stuck in chronic pain, illness or stress. Visit her website at to reach out.

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