Winter is finally over and festival season is upon us. “This is when I see the most sunburns,” says board-certified dermatologist, Dr. Kate Holcomb. “Many people forget to sun protect because they are enjoying the spring weather and are not hot. Additionally, they have been covered up for the last several months.”
If you’re planning on standing out in the sun for long periods, remember to seek shade during peak times of the day. A good rule of thumb is to apply sunscreen every two hours or every time you have a drink. If you haven’t found the right sunscreen, fear not. According to Dr. Holcomb, “there is a sunscreen out there for everyone.”
While some may find it difficult to track down a sunscreen that both feels and looks good on their skin, it’s a crucial part of outdoor fun. Dr. Holcomb also reminds us that, “What you wear for sports and swimming and long outdoor exposures should be different than what you wear every day.”
For kids and sports enthusiasts, Dr. Holcomb recommends two readily available, inexpensive water resistant sunscreens: Vanicream and Banana Boat Tear Free for Kids (you can sweat like crazy and these won’t burn your eyes). “I also like both of these brands because they contain physical blockers (titanium dioxide and zinc oxide), which work instantly, unlike chemical blockers,” says Holcomb.
Chemical sunscreens, like those found in most sport or spray formulations, take 20-30 minutes to work, so if you are going into full sun directly after application that’s how long you will be exposed to sun damage.
Dr. Holcomb also warns against spray sunscreens since most people apply these inconsistently and the side effects of inhalation are unknown.
Holcomb stresses that overall skin health and treatment is contingent on preventive measures. “We always talk about wearing sunscreen to prevent skin cancer, and that is certainly important. However, the health of our skin and other long term skin problems, such as acne scarring, pigmentation and aging, are dependent on sun protection.” So, don’t put yourself at risk this festival season. Seek shade, wear sunscreen and enjoy the music!
As a reminder, most dermatologists recommend that you at least wear a sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or greater. Please speak with a board-certified dermatologist, such as Dr. Kate Holcomb, about skin health concerns or treatment.
For additional information on skincare or to purchase Total Defense and Repair, contact Pure Dermatology at 504-226-PURE (7873) or visit Dr. Holcomb at 3100 Galleria Drive, Suite 301, Metairie, LA 70001.