Sun damage: How to reverse the effects on your skin

As we dust off our suitcases, sort through holiday clothes, and salvage the remains of last years’ sun cream supply, the heat of summer couldn’t be more warmly welcomed. Many of us love the feeling of sun on our skin. Enjoying the outdoors and getting that bronzed glow… what’s not to love? As we bask in the rays, we don’t want anything raining on our parade, but the sun’s impact is something that shouldn’t be ignored. We’re shedding some light on the true nature of sun damage and exploring how advances in skincare can now turn back time on years on its most noticeable effects.

How exactly does it affect our skin?

Whether you’re an avid sunbather or someone who prefers the shade, your main thought when purchasing sun cream is keeping that dreaded sunburn at bay. Red rashes, peeling skin and sleepless nights… it’s not what anyone wants to endure as a cost of enjoying the summer months. But really, this is only one of the types of radiation affecting our skin: Ultraviolet B. UVB varies in intensity throughout the year, posing the greatest risk in the summer months. These rays consist of short waves penetrating to the epidermis, the surface layer of the skin, and causing the most widely recognised symptoms of too much sun exposure.

This is only surface level, however, and the presence of Ultraviolet A means the long term impact runs far deeper. UVA penetrates right to the dermis, the thickest layer of skin. This type of radiation accelerates the ageing process by causing and worsening dehydration lines, hyperpigmentation, sagging complexion and thickening of the skin. In fact, this type of sun exposure is responsible for a whopping 80% of skin ageing – and unlike UVB, it affects our skin whenever it’s in daylight. It’s the same case for Infrared-A - which makes up a third of the solar radiation reaching our skin, and manifests in the degradation of collagen - and Visible Light, which is electromagnetic radiation that’s been proven to induce even darker pigmentation than UVA.

Although skin cancer won’t affect every one of us, the statistics are scary – and when 90% of skin cancers are caused by sun exposure, it’s clear we need to up our game with sun protection, giving our skin the TLC it deserves.

Sun protection: how much is enough?

The importance of SPF is no secret, with creams, lotions and oils being a holiday staple for most of us. Experts recommend using approximately two tablespoons of product to cover the whole body, and letting this soak in for 30 minutes before heading outside. This should be reapplied every two hours, or more if we’re swimming or sweating.

More of our skin’s exposed when we’re spending our days in our swimsuits, so it’s only right we put this extra time and energy into keeping ourselves protected. But this doesn’t mean that we should fully forget our diligent regime the minute we get on the plane. Our faces see daylight every single day, meaning the powerful effects of UVB, Infrared-A and Visible Light are at work. Incorporating SPF into our daily skincare or makeup routine is a great way to tackle this.

Beyond repair?

The signs of ageing are often spoken of as irreversible – that it’s a process that can be slowed down, but not undone. This isn’t necessarily the case. Cutting-edge technology is changing the face of skincare by combatting years of sun damage - reducing wrinkles and sagging, correcting the complexion, and reinvigorating that sought-after youthful glow. There’s options available both in clinic and for use at home, so you can choose whichever’s more comfortable and convenient for you.

Firstly, there’s ENDYMED. Used in clinics, ENDYMED utilises radiofrequency energy and 3DEEP Skin Science to deliver treatments that target different layers of the skin. The treatment you opt for depends on your skin type and ageing concerns.

ENDYMED FSR - This is ideal for dried out, sun-damaged skin on the face, resurfacing the top layers of skin. This reduces fine lines and wrinkles, improves the skin’s overall texture, and boosts luminosity.

ENDYMED TIGHTEN - This tightens and lifts skin that’s sagged over time, stimulating collagen production by heating deep within the skin.

ENDYMED INTENSIF - The ultimate treatment for advanced ageing and sun damaged skin, this treatment tackles every layer of the skin, offering the benefits of ENDYMEND FSR and TIGHTEN together in one.

Then there’s NEWA: the handheld device that tightens, firms and plumps skin by naturally boosting and reinvigorating collagen production. It’s proven to be the most effective skin tightening treatment outside of skin clinics, with 89% of women reporting a noticeable glow after first use, and a significant reduction of lines and wrinkles after four weeks.

Whatever your current approach to sun protection, when you come back from your holiday, compare the routine you’ve taken to your usual day-to-day. This time of year doesn’t have to be seen as a few weeks of frantic sunburn prevention – it’s the perfect chance to embrace a kinder skincare regime year-round. The easiest way to do this is simply incorporating products with SPF into your daily routine, be that with makeup or skincare. Though for more drastic results and more pressing needs for sun damage reversal, treatments like NEWA and ENDYMED can be added in at weekly or monthly intervals.

In the meantime, enjoy all the plans you have in store for the rest of summer! That long-awaited chill time can be enough to restore your radiance, with or without those rays beating down on you.

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NEWA is the most advanced home-use radiofrequency device available. It’s clinically proven to rebuild collagen and reduce wrinkles safely and effectively.

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