In the Pacific Northwest we LIVE for the summers. We just can't get enough of that Vitamin D we have been deprived of all winter. For as wonderful as it is the sun can be damaging to our skin. We must protect ourselves because frequent exposure to the sun could lead to dark spots, wrinkles and even skin cancer. Here are some ways to protect yourself:
1. Take breaks in the shade. By taking a break you limit your exposure and prevent dehydration.
2. Wear protective clothing. Hats can shade your face from the sun. Additionally, SPF clothing is available but in my opinion most are not very stylish.
3. Wear SPF 30 or higher sunscreen. SPF 30 will offer sufficient protection anything over 30 does not offer much more protection. However, with all sunscreens you must reapply every two hours.
4. Choose a mineral based sunscreen. Mineral based sunscreens like zinc oxide offer protection without using chemicals that can be harmful to the body. Chemical based sunscreens use Oxybenzone and Octinoxate which can disrupt hormones in our body. Additionally, chemical sunscreens are harmful to the coral living in the ocean.
5. Taking an Astaxanthin daily can protect your skin from sun damage. Astaxanthin is a very potent anti-oxidant that can be found in red algae. If taken as a supplement it can protect the skin against UV damage. I would not recommend using Astaxanthin instead of applying sunscreen but it could offer further protection.