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Health Sun cream


NB: Body Image to change according to topic. Also move pointers.


What you need to know about…


Sunscreen


Buying a sun cream product can be a minefield as there are so many to choose from. Here’s a quick guide to keep you in the know


Q A


There lots of different sun cream products available, how do you


choose the right one?


Using the right type of sun protection products can help keep your skin healthy


when you’re out and about when it’s sunny. But sun creams vary in the amount of protection they offer, as well as the type of rays they protect against. Your local Careway pharmacist can help you


choose the right sun cream product for your skin type. If you have pale or fair skin, for instance, you’ll usually need a much higher level of protection than someone with olive or dark skin. It’s also worth being aware of the types of rays


that can damage your skin, and what you should look for in a sun cream to protect against that damage. The three main types of rays are UV-A, UV-B and IR-A.


Q A


How do UV-A rays damage your skin?


These rays penetrate the skin deeply down to the dermis, the layer of skin below the


epidermis (the top layer). They are the rays your body needs to start making vitamin D. Overexposure to UV-A rays is linked with skin ageing and short-term pigment darkening (tanning). On sun cream products, UV-A protection is


usually represented as a number of stars from one to five. The higher the number means the higher the level of UV-A protection. The NHS advises using a sun cream product with at least four-star UV-A protection.


Q A


What about UV-B?


UV-B penetrates the skin’s more superficial epidermal layers and is the main UV ray


responsible for sunburn. It plays a key part in the development of skin cancer while also contributing to skin ageing. UV-B rays are strongest between March and October, particularly from 11am to 3pm. The strength of UV-B protection in a sun cream


product is measured in units called SPF (sun protection factor). The higher the SPF number,


the higher the amount of protection a sun cream offers. NHS guidelines state you should use a sun cream with a SPF of at least 15. Someone with pale or fair skin that burns easily, however, may need a higher SPF protection level.


Q A


What are IR-A rays?


IR-A is short for infrared-A, which is also a type of ray that reaches our atmosphere from


the sun. It’s thought that only seven per cent of the sun’s rays are made of UV-A and UV-B, with IR-A making up around half. And because IR-A rays penetrate deeper into the skin, they can cause both long and short-term damage. IR-A rays trigger the generation of harmful


molecules called free radicals, which may both damage skin cells and break down collagen in the skin, leading to skin ageing. And while most sunscreen products protect against UV-A and UV- B, there are fewer that also protect against IR-A.


Q A


How can you protect your skin against all three types of rays?


Ask your local Careway pharmacist about Solero Triple Defence products, sun creams


that protect against the three types of rays. These are available with five-star UV-A protection and a choice of different SPF protection levels, from 15 - 50+


Need more advice about looking after your skin in the sun? Visit your local pharmacy (find your nearest Careway pharmacy by at www.careway.co.uk/find-a-pharmacy).


All About health 21


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