If you read one post here, make it this one

Is tanning good or bad? Bad. But what about sun exposure in general? The sun may not burn you instantly, but the collagen damage happens- even through windows.
Do naturally darker people have more protection against wrinkles? Nope. Dark skin has an SPF rating of 2.  Read on to learn how it works, and how you can help yourself;

UVR rays are split into three categories; UVR UVA AND UVC.

UVC are mostly depleted through the earths atmosphere, needless to say that UVA and UVB reach our skin in large amounts and are the ones that cause the most harm. UVA rays are what age you essentially.
UVB rays are the ones that burn the skin, it has considerable capacity to cause harm in the form of blisters. However the earth is bombarded with 100 times as many UVA rays as UVB, so while UVA is weaker, it has an enormous impact.

The sun is the strongest between 10am and 2pm so try to avoid being outside at that time and remember that clouds filter some, not all, of the UVR rays. Cement, water and snow reflect UVR rays giving your skin a double whammy.
Interestingly enough, UVB rays cannot get through glass so you can’t get burnt near a window or in a car. However UVA rays do get through, so sitting next to a window during the day offers no UVA protection at all. Sunglasses are different (explained later).

There is no such thing as a safe tan. Actually all exposure to the sun damages the skin. Most people think that sun damage only occurs when you lay out and get a deep, dark tan. That is only part of the problem.  Sun damage occurs the second you leave the house. It may take some 20 minutes to get burned, others an hour, but the UVA rays that cause cancer and skin wrinkling will attack as soon as you are exposed to sunshine. It is the repeated sun exposure 365 days a year, just for a few minutes a day, that causes damage physically and aesthetically.

Back to tanning. Maybe you are fair or dark, but any shade darker than your natural colour is harming your skin. A tan is the skin’s response to sun damage, and while you may think a tan looks nice, it is not nice for the skin. Melanocytes are the skin cells than contain the browning pigment, melanin. These brown cells determine a persons natural skin tone. Surprisingly, the difference between the lightest skin colour and the darkest is only a tiny amount. With exposure to the sun, the melanocytes produce more melanin, and the tanned skin is the result. A tan provides an SPF of only 2. So there isn’t any way a tan can be considered healthy. Because melanin isn’t a very reliable sunscreen, dark skinned people will suffer negative effects from sun exposure. Skin cancer is less likely, but wrinkling and ashen skin colour is certain. Tanning beds are just as bad as the sun if not worse, by the way. Isn’t that self evident anyway? If the skin is brown, it’s trying to protect itself. The same cells are being attacked and activated hence the pigmentation. It doesn’t matter what marketing ploys the tanning salon owners will tell you. It’s about money to them, not your health.

You can tell the people who have spent time in the sun (Layne Beachly, surfers) from the ones who haven’t (usually europeans) by the time they are in their late twenties and hit the 30 mark. It hits them like a tsunami, and as the collagen decreases naturally, the history of sun damage appears. I’d rather be young looking and pale (or fake tanned) than blotchy and tanned when I’m 28. There is a limit to how much you can tan anyway, since the melocytes cells can’t be activated over and over, and it eventually becomes discoloration.

The most damning result of sun exposure is that it does damage to the entire system, beyond the problems that eventually take place on the skins surface. The Langerhans cells in the epidermis prevent bacteria from attacking the system and prevent cell mutation, making these cells indispensable to good health. Yet a few minutes of sun exposure can damage the L cells in ways that last for weeks.
In addition to damaging the immune system, the sun directly attacks the collagen structure of the skin, changing it from a cohesive network of support into a disorderly, weakened mass. While the sun is busy destroying collagen and the L cells, it thickens the skin, chokes off the blood supply and reduces elasticity.

So sunscreen is the first and foremost best defense against wrinkles Period. Let me say that again: It’s important! Daily application of a sunscreen (whether it’s in a moisturizer or a foundation) rated SPF 15 or greater is critical to preventing new wrinkles and keeping existing lines from deepening each year. Ignoring this fundamental principle and focusing instead on the myriad anti-aging claims on product labels is an open invitation for more wrinkles, skin discolorations, and potentially, skin cancer.  No anti-ageing products for your skin will work if you ignore the importance of or are not diligent about applying sunscreen daily. On your arms, chest and neck, always. Apply it twice. People often don’t apply it thick enough.

Ongoing use of an effective, broad-spectrum sunscreen allows skin to reap maximum benefit from “anti-aging” products. Skin is also better able to repair itself, has a stronger immune response, and will maintain its firmness years longer than it will for those who disregard sun protection or, even worse, continue to tan, whether in the sun or in a tanning salon, and the latter is much worse than getting a tan from the sun.

When applying makeup with sunscreen, surprisingly sunscreen should be the last thing you apply- after moisturizer and foundation, otherwise you break the protection apart.
I also strongly suggest avoiding sunscreen with Nano-particles, and opting for ones with mostly Titanium Dioxide and Zinc Oxide. I’ll dedicate a post to that very soon but basically Nano particles do to your skin basically what happens to the inside of an apple when you break the skin open. Because the chemicals are so tiny and absorb into the skin, the UV rays mix and mutate with the cells in the skin, sort of “oxidizing” your skin. The right sunscreen should sit ON your skin in a whitish layer, not be absorbed. Invisible Zinc is a great brand if you don’t know which is best.









2 responses to “If you read one post here, make it this one

  • Tom

    So you have not heard of the Vitamin D epidemic?

    • youfromtheinsideout

      Yes of course I know about the Vitamin D issue, and its not an epidemic so chill out. If anything you have heard propaganda for companies to sell more Pill form Vitamin D, happens all the time, all products create need for a market. I’m here to tell you the epidemic here is sun damage.
      Vitamin D dosage isn’t received by baking in the sun or being outdoors everyday. If your body is functioning properly vitamin D should be absorbed just fine- you see, it’s a common misconception that people who don’t tan do not get VD. I hear that same old justification a lot, but the thing is you get the right amount just going to your car, or a stroll to the shops. 5 minutes per day is required.
      You forget I live in australia, where there is little to no ozone. I also live in a desert area, one of the driest climates on earth. Europe is a totally different situation- still harmful for ageing but burning is far more difficult in places like Italy, as though a sheet of glass is protecting you.
      THIRDLY I am white, blue eyed and fair haired. My eyes swell as my skin can’t handle light as well (blue eyes which evolved to be able to see in dark, cloudy climates, are more likely to develop cataracts if you are outdoors a lot, as they can see brighter colours and contrasts than darker eyes) Like most of the population here, who are also of european origin and fair skinned.

      White skin (that means any skin that isn’t brown, not a shade of latte mocha- be warned now if you think you can get away with no SPF, ha!) absorbs sunlight like a sponge, we need far less exposure than people with darker skin, who are more prone/likely to being deficient in VD as their skin doesn’t absorb the light as much (a defence against the sun drenched areas they evolved), since you should know the purpose of darker skin is for the melanin to defend the skin from the UV rays that destroy the skin cells. White people coming from cold climates evolved to survive in climates with little sunlight, so that’s why our immunity against it is so low. Our skin did not evolve to defend itself from a lifetime in the sun or desert. I know my skin evolved to do the opposite. I have a strong history of by skin cancer in my family, some died from it. My dad is frequently getting them cut out, he’s unsure if he will eventually die from it, he doesn’t know how far it has spread, and my grandfather on my mothers side had many removed too.
      I have very pale skin, and I also was sunburned really really painfully badly when i was 9, as most kids have been…and few more times after that before turning 13, and I tanned a lot since I swam and played a lot of sports. I have doubled my risk of developing skin cancer now thanks to that one burn, and when I take into account the other factors- extra burns, family history, skin tone, living in WA by the beach since I was born… I probably have an 80 percent chance of getting it myself. Children who grew up here in the sun are far more at risk that an adult who has never been burnt and moves here or come on a holiday. Their melanocytes have never been activated before you see, so they haven’t died or become deformed. Moles and freckles are a sign of deformed/traumatised skin cells. White patches on skin is discolouration which occurs when the skin melanin dies completely, most older adults over 40 have them, mixed with brown patches and freckles.

      2 IN 3 PEOPLE IN AUSTRALIA DEVELOP SKIN CANCER. It is grossly irresponsible to argue against sun protection any time, ever, especially to a White Australian, most of who are totally oblivious to how their skin operates, how the sun works and how our ozone and climate differ from what is “natural”. We also have a mentality of taking it all for granted, assuming it’s natural for us to be here, when in reality we aren’t native to the climate and our bodies haven’t had time to evolve in just a few generations after migrating from northern places. You get the anomaly now and then, usually Italian or Greek, people who can tan (they still turn into leather couches) and avoid the cancer, but most european descendants are fair skinned, not olive. The cancer statistics speak for themselves I’m sure.

      This is Australia, the sun is fierce, and it is unnecessary to deliberately seek extra UV exposure. You have to be logical, how many Aussie adults have skin cancer or moles cut out, brown patchy skin, extra wrinkles, premature ageing etc, and how many speak of their VD deficiency? I know what i’m worried about and it’s not lack of Vitamin D.
      It seems very stupid to do something verifiably dangerous, because of the small chance you might gain something from it. That’s like going out into a war zone to look for treasure or something- you gotta weigh up the odds man. It’s inconvenient to be without VD, sure, but what are the chances you’re deficient? ..and what are the chances the sun will destroy you while you’re out there? 100 percent. But is it worth it?
      Like I said, to get your VD – which is a valid point- yes, go outside now and then, don’t be a hermit! But don’t seek the sun.
      Just be careful. That’s all really.

      Disapproving of others health decisions is not disapproving of a poorly chosen outfit. I don’t take opinions when it comes to my skins health. I wish I could tan like I used to. I used to not know, or care, like most people don’t.
      The vigilance I have now wasn’t really a choice as much as it was an obligation. Looking after my skin, like my choice to not smoke, despite all the odds stacked against me is something to be proud of. I choose to be different to everyone else I know, and not cave to peer pressure. Not cause I like it, I hate it! lol. I am doing it for the greater good though, like any investment.
      It’s tough to deal with the 1980s type backwards thinking/lack of knowledge in WA, as tans are big here….but I have to think of my HEALTH and my dads cancer is a daily reminder of what is to come if I am not careful.
      I drink booze often, I love caffeine, I sleep late, I eat too much meat and sugar, and I do not moisturise. I’m self indulgent, at least I can do something for my body. I don’t wanna give up my vices for now, but excessive sun is something I am willing to give up! That is my own circumstance, and I want others to be aware too so they can decide for themselves.

      As for Cancer…
      At the end of the day, anyone ignorant or ruthless enough to not grasp the weight of the risks they are taking, probably doesn’t care what happens anyway, if not “deserves” their fate.
      Like the recently deceased writer Christopher Hitchens who died from his love of smoking and drinking (throat cancer). I’m devastated that he is gone, I imagine his wife children resent it even more! But he chose to abuse his body and it’s done as done! He is gone. He said “The light burned quickly but it gave a brilliant light” as his reasoning.
      SO, We can’t all have our cake an eat it too. There is usually a downside to everything- too much sun, too little. Drinking too much, eating too much, or not enjoying life at all and having no company to laugh with. If you make millions from a modelling career, I would suggest that enjoying donuts every week is going to have more cons that pros for you.
      If you are an intellect, or don’t rely on your body much… well it’s not so bad as you won’t be unemployed if you gain 20 pounds. Hoarding your money, or blowing it every week? Both are silly, but it depends who the person is, and what the circumstances are. Just like a brown skinned person can play in the sun all day and be okay, but for a white person to is entirely different. For one its acceptable but that rule doesn’t apply to all, so don’t assume it does when the risks are so high for the majority. The fact is you are more likely to get skin cancer than a lack VD, so pick your battles. This one is a hopeless one.
      People can argue till the cows come home about what is the “right choice”, but it all depends on what’s right for you.

      Some people are deficient in VD, yet absorbing this vitamin is more complex than tanning. If a persons body can’t absorb it that’s often down to a dietary problem or some other underlying issue.
      Fear of VD deficiency is no excuse to tan. You like being indoors and wanna forgo DAILY protection? fine, if you don’t care about delaying the ageing process there is probably no harm done. But it’s the people surf, or who tan, or are outdoors a lot like trade workers or sports people are, and think it’s somehow difficult for their Caucasian skin to absorb UV rays. For them it is not vanity but life and death.

      Go to http://www.cancer.org.au/cancersmartlifestyle/SunSmart/VitaminD.htm and learn more. This website is brief and informative, so take a browse at all the pages. Don’t just take my advice look into it more to discover how tans, cancer, melanoma and the skin works if you want to know how high the risk factor is for YOU.
      Now you know my risk factors I hopefully won’t get anymore smart assed comments about my choices to take care of my skin.

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