Why you should wear sun cream INDOORS during lockdown

Why you should wear sun cream INDOORS during lockdown: SPF protects skin against UV rays which penetrate windows and ageing blue light emitted by phones and computer screens, expert claims

  • Candice Gardner, of Dermalogica, recommends sticking to daily SPF regime
  • While sun is shining, important to protect skin while exercising or shopping 
  • Claims harmful UV rays can penetrate glass if working from home near a window
  • Coronavirus symptoms: what are they and should you see a doctor?

It seems Spring has finally arrived, with much of Britain basking in a week of glorious sunshine amid the coronavirus crisis. 

With the country on lockdown and people confined to their homes, many will have abandoned some of their daily beauty regimes, such as applying SPF (sun protection factor).

But according to an expert, doing so could leave our skin vulnerable to harmful UV rays – despite the fact we’re spending less time outdoors.

Candice Gardner, education manager at skincare brand Dermalogica, told FEMAIL that sticking to a SPF regime remains a necessity for most, even with the current restrictions on our activities.

With the country on lockdown and people confined to their homes, many will have abandoned some of their daily beauty regimes, such as applying SPF (sun protection factor). Pictured: stock image

She said: ‘We’re still encouraged to seek fresh air once a day and as the sunshine is out, it’s imperative that you protect your skin. 

‘It may not seem hot enough for you to be concerned about the impact, but the UVA rays are still strong enough to lead to skin damage.’

Candice said it’s also important to consider where you have set up your ‘working from home’ area.

‘If your desk is near a window, it’s important to still continue with your daily SPF regimen,’ she explained. 

‘You may have heard that you can’t get a sunburn through glass, but that doesn’t mean glass blocks all ultraviolet, or UV, light. 

Candice Gardener is education manager at skincare brand Dermalogica

‘The rays that lead to skin or eye damage can still get through, even if you don’t get burned. 

‘Whilst UVB, the high intensity wavelengths that cause burning, cannot penetrate glass, you will still be vulnerable to the skin damaging and ageing effects of UVA.’

It’s not just natural sunlight which can have an ageing impact on your skin. 

‘We’re becoming more aware now of the impacts of high energy visible light (HEV) or blue light,’ Candice explained. 

‘Naturally part of the daylight spectrum, these are also the wavelengths of light emitted from computer screens and smart phone devices. 

‘Increased concerns around free radical damage and potential for health concerns in the future, means this could be another consideration for ensuring you skin has good daily protection.’

High energy visible light is the part of the light spectrum that sits right next to UV. 

Candice recommended Dermalogica’s new Invisible Physical SPF30

The energy produced is lower than that of UVA, but can still cause some generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS). 

According to Candice, early studies suggest that too much blue light may contribute to collagen degradation, darken hyperpigmentation – especially in deeper skin tones – and trigger inflammation.

‘Research is still emerging in this area and we do not yet have sufficient data collected over time to define accurately the level of exposure required to cause a specific degree of damage,’ she added.

‘However, since blue light borders UVA in the electromagnetic spectrum, some sunscreen filters like zinc oxide and titanium dioxide can also shield from blue light at the same time as providing UV protection.’

Candice recommended trying Dermalogica’s new Invisible Physical SPF30 – a weightless sunscreen that blends easily on all skin tones and helps defend against UVA/UVB and blue light, without irritating sensitive skin.

What is UVA and why is it harmful? 

In the past, sun products protected you from burning and the SPF number told you how much burning protection you were getting. But burning is not the whole story. 

Sunlight also contains a component called UVA, which doesn’t cause much burning in the skin but does cause longer-term skin damage and premature ageing. So it is important to protect against UVA, and to know just how well a product protects against this part of sunlight.

Because higher SPF products allow you to stay in the sun longer, then they need to provide more UVA protection than lower SPF products. 

This is taken into account in the UVA star rating system. To achieve each star rating the product must always absorb the same percentage of UVA light. 

For example to achieve 4-star protection, the product must absorb at least 80 per cent as much UVA light as UVB light. 

As the UVB absorbance increases (SPF) then the UVA absorbance must increase proportionally, to give the same percentage absorbance and to achieve the same star-rating. 

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