No one will argue that Movie Stars spend a lot of money to keep their skin looking youthful. It’s almost miraculous how well some older celebs look—their skin resembling someone more like half their REAL age. But how many of us less-famous people have the money to spend on face lifts and expensive beauty products to prevent skin aging?
If you want to keep your skin looking younger longer, there’s one obvious tip we can suggest. Wear sunscreen!
A recent study of over 900 people in Australia provides the strongest evidence yet of the long-term benefits of wearing sunscreen. The study (see video below), published in the Annals of Internal Medicine in 2013, showed that after 4.5 years, those study participants who applied sunscreen at least once a day, experienced 24% less skin aging (on the back of their hands) than those who were left to follow any sunscreen habit they liked. When asked about the study, lead researcher Adele Green, said “It is fair to say it was a general assumption that sunscreen would have this effect on photoaging (visible signs of aging caused by the sun), but our findings now provide the evidence.”
So Do All Sunscreens Prevent Skin Aging?
We’ve all heard of SPF in sunscreen. It’s a calculation of how long your skin will be protected from the sun’s burning (UVB) rays. However, the sun rays that are most responsible for photoaging, UVA rays, were not dealt with by sunscreen companies until recently. Today, it is important that you look for a sunscreen product that is clearly labeled BROAD SPECTRUM—which means it meets the latest FDA standards for protecting your skin from both UVB (skin burning) and UVA (skin aging) rays.
Is Sunscreen Safe for Everyday Use?
The short answer is, YES, it is. Despite alarms voiced by some special interest groups, dermatologists (the people who treat skin problems) agree that preventing skin cancer outweighs any UNPROVEN claims of toxicity or health hazard from ingredients in sunscreen. After scouring the Internet, we were unable to find any instance of a person being treated for wearing too much sunscreen.
The Bottom Line
If you don’t believe sun damages skin, observe the skin on your arms or face, then compare it to the skin on your back side that never sees the sun. Taking sun safety measures like wearing protective clothing and applying sunscreen religiously, is the easiest (and cheapest) way to keep that skin looking youthful—even when the years start adding up.
So anytime you know you will be outdoors for any length of time, be sure and apply sunscreen. The mirror will be kinder to you down the road.