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The big cover-up: sun-smart tips for skin

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Posted: Monday, May 5, 2014 10:00 pm | Updated: 1:38 am, Fri Oct 3, 2014.

(BPT) - Summer is a time for playing and relaxing in the great outdoors, but activities like volleyball, enjoying a picnic lunch in the park or even driving to work with the sunroof open can lead to unexpected sun exposure.

Nearly 50 percent of men and women would use more sunscreen if they could travel back in time to better care for their skin, according to a recent survey conducted on behalf of Mary Kay. Over-exposure can be the No. 1 contributor to pre-mature skin aging.

“Being outside during the summer months – even for a short amount of time like walking to the mailbox and back – exposes a person’s skin to the sun, and its UVA and UVB rays,” says Dr. Beth Lange, chief scientific officer of Mary Kay. “This can lead to visible signs of skin aging as well as the potential for non-melanoma skin cancer.”

No matter where you live, what your skin tone is or even if you only think you’ll be out for a short while, always wear sunscreen. It should be applied often, even when not in the water, and it’s recommended to reapply every two hours. Dr. Lange’s sun smart tips can help you safely enjoy the sun and your time outside:

* Shade your skin – Clothing can help provide protection against UVA and UVB rays. Light, long-sleeved shirts, large-brimmed hats to provide shade over the ears, face and neck, as well as maxi dresses or loose pants all work well to help keep the skin protected. It’s important to note you’re exposed to UVA and UVB rays all days of the year, even on cloudy days. Apparel that is more sheer or see-through will not provide protection as well as thicker fabrics.

* Sunblock “365” – A broad-spectrum sunscreen that provides UVA and UVB protection helps protect the skin from the sun’s damaging rays every day of the year. Try Mary Kay CC Cream Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 15 and wear it year-round – no matter the weather or temperature. It provides lightweight coverage that will look natural and also provide sun protection. Referred to as a “Complexion Corrector,” this skin care savior delivers eight benefits in one step to leave skin with a flawless finish. And always remember to protect that sunny smile. Use at least SPF 15, even on your lips. Try Sun Care Lip Protector Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 15 which works alone or layered under your lipstick or gloss.

* Play in the shade – The sun’s most intense hours are between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. during the summer months. If you want to be outside during these hours, look for ways to stay shaded – to both protect yourself from sun exposure and to stay cool. Take a hike in the woods with trees providing natural shade, eat a picnic lunch under a tree in the park or use an umbrella or cabana at the beach. Also, keep an eye on the sun’s position throughout the day and rotate your position in order to stay in the shade.

* Get a sunless tan – A sun-kissed glow to the face, shoulders and bare legs is the ideal look for most people during the summer and it can be accomplished without exposure to the skin-aging rays of the sun. Get moisture and tanning in one step with Mary Kay Subtle Tanning Lotion. Use it daily to build up a beautiful color in about a week. You’ll have a sun-kissed look, fully moisturized skin, and it won’t rub off on clothing.

“If you want to keep your skin looking younger for many years to come, be sure to take steps to avoid being unprotected in to the sun,” Lange says. “Ninety percent of visible signs of skin aging are caused by sun exposure.”

Keep Lange’s tips in mind next time you head outside. Because whether you’re a sun worshipper or stay in the shade, it’s easier than ever to care for your skin. Sun protection is an investment that will truly pay off.

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