Is sunscreen really that important? 

By Gabriella, Laser Technician and Aesthecian at SKIN Clinics

The sun is a wonderful thing. It’s one of the best perks of living in our harsh climates; sure, it might be warm in Vancouver in January—but at least we’ve got sunshine! Feeling the sun’s warmth on our skin is one of the best parts of summer. In Manitoba, where the summer is short, we can’t help but want to be outside whenever the weather is cooperating. Protecting ourselves from the sun’s damaging rays is a key part of enjoying the season.

It’s important to understand what is actually happening when we don’t protect our skin. When we are under sun exposure our melanin protects our skin, but with too much sun, it can damage or kill our skin cells, while causing free radicals. Frequent or prolonged sun exposure is the main cause of skin cancer. Skin cancer rates are on the rise, and it is now the most common form of cancer.  Many people don’t realize how serious skin cancer can be—they think that it just needs to be cut out and they’ll be fine. But melanoma, if it’s not caught early on, can become deadly.

UV rays also account for 80% of skin aging and wrinkles.  As we age, the damage from our younger years starts to show. Sun spots or “age spots,” start to appear, and our skin loses its elasticity from collagen depletion caused by the sun’s rays.

Sunscreen is going to prevent and protect you from these things in the future. Wearing sunscreen is one of the best (and easiest) things that you can do for your health. We recommend adding it into your morning routine before you leave the house. Keeping a small bottle in your purse or other handy spot is a great way to ensure that you get the protection you need. In addition to the very obvious perk of protecting yourself from the most common type of cancer, there’s the added bonus of protecting your skin’s youthful appearance. Make sure to look for sunscreens with physical and chemical sunscreens for the best optimal protection.

Gabriella, Laser Technician and Esthetician at SKIN Clinics

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