Damage Control: How to Reverse The Aging Effects of the Sun
If you spend a lot of time outdoors without sunscreen, you will probably get damage to your skin. Sun damage does not occur from a day in the sun, but from years of exposure to ultraviolet rays. Besides the visible sunburns, UV rays are responsible for up to 90 percent of skin aging.
Some of the common signs of sun damage include wrinkles, dark spots, sagging skin, and many more. You can reverse the damage through:
1. Skin Exfoliation
You can repair your skin from sun damage through exfoliation. With this method, you will scrub the skin to remove dead cells. Removing dead cells allows your skin space to grow newer and healthier skin cells. If your skin has a layer of dead and darkened cells that hold clumps of brown pigment, exfoliation may work to reverse that damage. Through exfoliation, you can fuel the growth of new cells.
You can use physical or chemical exfoliants. The former uses fine granules to remove dead skin while the latter uses chemicals to dissolve the dead skin. If your skin is sensitive, chemical exfoliation is gentler to your skin.
2. Using Retinol
You can use retinol to stimulate cell turnover and increase the production of collagen. Retinal stimulates the skin to shed off the dead skin cells and grow newer and healthier cells. With time, it improves your skin pigmentation and removes the brown spots caused by sun damage.
There are different retinol products, some in form of gels and others creams. The strength of the products also varies, and some may even require a prescription. Pregnant women should avoid retinol as it can affect the unborn baby.
3. Laser Therapy
The above two methods are topical and can be self-administered. Laser treatment has to be conducted by a professional at an established clinic such as Dominion Women’s Health. Using laser therapy, you can reverse blotchiness, discoloration, wrinkles, and brown spots from sun damage.
Laser therapy works by causing small injuries to the skin to trigger the growth of new skin. It is important to talk to your dermatologist before you try laser therapy. This is the fastest method of correcting the damage caused by the sun.
4. Skin Lightening
There is no bleach involved in this practice. Rather, the products used here have hydroquinone as the main ingredient that helps to even the melanin that accumulates on some parts of the skin. The product comes as a cream or serum. Again, you need to talk to your dermatologist for product recommendations so you do not end up bleaching your skin.
Prevent Skin Damage
You do not have to wait until your skin is excessively damaged to start looking for a cure. You need to adopt the right sun safety habits. For starters, wear sunscreen with a Sun Protection Factor of at least 30. You can also consider sunglasses, sun protective clothing, a cap, or wide-brimmed hat. There are also apps that help you determine when to get stop exposing your skin to the sun and the amount of sunscreen you can apply.