Suppliers of medical and professional skincare and beauty products

ALL THINGS U.V.

August 1, 2017

Pigmentation, premature ageing, capillary damage and skin cancers all have one troublesome mutual friend: The Sun. It’s no secret that the sun’s rays are one of the main causes of skin ageing, accounting for 80% of the external damage to our skin tissues. Our sun has a lot to answer for where our skin is concerned but without it, life would simply not exist. So how do we manage a healthy balance of enjoying the sunshine while preventing the damage from UV? The answer is not rocket science, but knowing your facts when it comes to sun care could save you the heartache of unsightly wrinkles, pigmentation and more importantly, skin cancers later on.

New Zealand has one of the highest exposure rates to Ultra Violet Radiation (UVR) in the world. The Ozone layer is depleted most dramatically over Antarctica with New Zealand coming a close 2nd. As a result, we have the highest skin cancer and mortality rates relative to population. Statistics that can only be reduced if we decide to look after ourselves and our families better. In New Zealand it’s important that we protect against UVR every day, no matter the weather!

aviator-sunglasses

Here are some key things to look out for when choosing a sun screen:

Broad Spectrum Protection meaning the UVR filtering ingredients in the sunscreen defend against both UVA (responsible for ageing) and UVB (responsible for burning) rays. The ‘+’ sign next to the SPF number on the packaging represents broad spectrum protection.

Physical Blocks of which there are two: Titanium Dioxide and Zinc Oxide. We have two different types of sun protection that prevent burning and skin damage. A physical sunblock and a chemical sunscreen. The physical blocks work by deflecting the UV rays from the surface of the skin, like a mirror. Chemical blocks absorb the UVR into the superficial layers of dead skin cells and dissipate the radiation before it reaches our living tissues. Sunscreens that are too high in chemical ingredients have the tendency to cause skin reactions and sensitisation, these are often the cheaper sunscreen options we find in the supermarket. Although, there is certainly a place for chemical screens, the best sun protection products will have a balance of both physical and chemical ingredients.

Antioxidants: Studies show that the efficacy of the SPF is greatly increased by the addition of antioxidants. When UVR comes into contact with our skin it can create a molecular reaction resulting in the formation of ‘free radicals’. Free radicals are highly reactive and unstable atoms responsible for the ageing process known as ‘oxidation’. There are many factors that play a role in generating these troublesome molecules: pollution, cigarette smoke, prescription medications, exposure to harmful chemicals and of course UV Radiation just to name a few. Oxidation is unavoidable and is happening constantly all around us. The good news is, we can counteract these oxygen scavenging free radicals with the help of antioxidants, now the name makes sense, right? Vitamins A, C & E are the most common sources of antioxidants, recommended both within our diets and our skin care for best possible protection. Special polyphenols and carotenoids found in certain plants and seaweeds such as green tea and spirulina also prove effective in counter acting the damage caused by free radicals.

Water Resistant Properties. Water acts as a magnifying glass when it comes to UVR. It is imperative we wear sunblock to ensure damage isn’t exacerbated when swimming at the beach or in the pool. When our skin is cooled down by the water we can’t rely on our temperature gauge to tell us when we have had too much sun. It is essential that we reapply sunblock each time after being in the water to ensure full protection

antiodident

Other helpful sun smart tips:
Keep kids covered as much as possible. Rash shirts, brimmed hats and board shorts aren’t the greatest fashion statement but are necessary if you want to properly protect your children. Most sun induced damage and lesions (including skin cancers) are caused during the first 10 years of life and may not manifest themselves until later on.

The Teaspoon Rule. Studies show most of us only apply 25-50% of the recommended amount of sunscreen required for proper protection. As a rule, the average adult should apply roughly 1 teaspoon per area:
1 tsp for face, neck and décolleté
1 tsp for front of body
1 tsp for back
1 tsp per arm
1 tsp per leg

T I P : If you don’t take your kitchen utensils along to the beach, have no fear! Squeeze a line of sunblock from the tip of your middle finger to the base of your palm for the perfect measurement!

Check yourself and your family. Skin cancers may be in places that are not easy to see for yourself, make sure to check places such as behind the ears, underarms, scalp, soles of feet, back of neck, fingernails and toenails. If you aren’t able to have someone check these areas for you, try using a hand held mirror. Certain skin cancers are extremely fast growing and can be fatal if not dealt with in time. Seek medical advice as soon as possible if you notice any changes in the colour and/or texture of a moles, if you notice a new mole or if you see or feel something that is different from other moles.

Our famous Fleur De Mer Sunscreen in Foundation Creams are specially formulated in Australia to protect our skin against the harsh Australian and New Zealand sun. With SPF50+ broad spectrum protection to filter damaging UVA and UVB rays aiding in the prevention of premature skin ageing, pigmentation, wrinkles and most importantly reducing the risk of some skin cancers.

Available in three shades ranging from LIGHT (very subtle coverage), MEDIUM (somewhat darker with a warm undertone) and SOFT MEDIUM (in between with a cool undertone).

Clear Sunscreen Lotion also available with a non-ghosting formula and added Vitamin E for powerful antioxidant protection.

Why choose Fleur De Mer Sunscreens?:

  • Soft, non-greasy texture
  • Natural Iron Oxide mineral pigments
  • SPF50+ broad spectrum protection
  • 3 hours water resistance
  • Three shades to perfectly match your skin tone
  • Suitable for sensitive skins
  • Clear formula available in 375ml size for full body protection
  • Specially formulated for Australian and New Zealand skins
Fleur De Mer Soft Medium

Check out what some of the beauty industry’s best have to say about our Fleur De Mer Sunscreens. Click here for product review.

Youtube Clip: How the Sun Sees You

More information on sun safety can be found at http://www.sunsmart.org.nz/