Learn how to prevent sun spots before it's too late!
1. Wear sunscreen – applied generously everyday rain or shine. The number one reason for premature aging comes from UV exposure and can bring on the sun spots. UVA rays (aging rays) can penetrate through clouds and windows. However, it’s not the number of SPF you are wearing but how much you really are putting on. Most people do not put on enough to get the full amount of protection let alone reapply when outside. The size of a nickel should be applied per area- face, neck, and chest. Regardless of the number, if you are outside, SPF should be reapplied every hour. Better to have a few blackheads from sunblock than sun damage!
2. Load up on antioxidants. This goes for your skincare as well as your diet. Wearing an antioxidant serum including Vitamin C and E underneath your SPF will not only protect you from environmental damage but will increase your natural SPF factor. You can also take these supplements daily as well as eating a beta carotene rich diet such as kale, spinach, carrots, and sweet potatoes.
3. Limit exposure to both heat and sun. New research has found that heat can stimulate melanin activity. If you are prone to pigmentation issues, especially hormonal pigmentation, such as melasma, please keep this in mind during these hot summer months. Try to stay indoors and limit your exposure to heat, sun and heat inducing activities such as steam and sauna room, Bikram yoga, and anything that increases your body temperature.
4. Keep skin cool as possible. It’s a good idea to keep some of your products in the refrigerator such as an alcohol free toner, antioxidant serum or a mask. This is a great way to decrease the melanin activity as well as keep any redness down.
5. Exfoliate gently. It is key to managing cell turnover, softening fine lines, as well as skin discoloration by exfoliating. Great way to exfoliate is to use round beads, such as jojoba. Stay away from harsh grains like apricot which can be very irritating. My favorite exfoliation for all skin types is fruit enzyme masks and AHA Serums containing non-alcohol acids such as Glycolic and Salicylic Acid, that can help break apart pigmented cells to lessen their appearance. Use these at night time while your skin is repairing and correcting.
6. Get a monthly facial. People tend to get lazy in the summer months with their skincare routine. They come in the fall and want to work on repairing the damage. However, prevention is key here. A monthly professional facial treatment uses stronger formulas and are packed full of antioxidant rich serums and masks for increased results.