How to Protect Your Skin from Sun Damage

Cancer Research UK reports that an estimated amount of 86% of melanomas diagnosed within the United Kingdoms every year are associated with too much exposure to the Sun’s UV radiation. Other types of skin cancer are also closely associated with constant and intermittent exposure to the Sun. reports that around one million American citizens are affected by skin cancer caused by overexposure to the sun each year. They also report that one out of every 87 individuals diagnosed with this condition tend to develop a more serious version of skin cancer known as malignant melanoma. There are around 7300 cases each year where the condition results in death.

While overexposure to the sun can lead to severe problems, which can even be life-threatening in some situations, preventative measures can be taken to avoid skin damage and minimize the effects the sun has on your skin. Medline Plus reports that too much exposure to the sun can lead to first and second degree burn wounds. They also report that sunburn is a result of UV rays from the sun exceeding the amount of rays the melanin in your skin can block. Mild side-effects of sunburn include tender skin that has a red appearance, as well as blisters and peeling skin. More severe side-effects associated with sunburn include nausea, fever, a rash, and chills. This is also commonly known as sun poisoning.

1. Avoid High Levels of UV Radiation

Several websites and news stations offer data on the UV index for specific days. This rate provides accurate information about the intensity level of UV radiation when the sun is at the highest point in the sky. Radiation levels below 5 are considered low and safer. Radiation levels between 5 and 6 are considered moderate and individuals being exposed to this levels should be cautious. Any level above 6 are considered high and individuals are advised to avoid these levels as much as possible. To be safe, it is recommended to avoid the midday sun between 10 in the morning and 4 in the afternoon whenever possible as this is when the sun’s radiation is at its highest level.

2. Use an Effective Sunscreen

When you are unable to avoid being in the sun, it is recommended to use a sunscreen to protect your skin from the sun’s damaging rays. WebMD explains that choosing the best sunscreen should include a process of determining the ingredients as well as the SPF factor of the sunscreen. They recommend using a sunscreen with an SPF factor of 15, or SPF 30 if you have very fair skin or suffer from a condition such as lupus. They also recommend looking for at least one of the following ingredients in the sunscreen you choose in order to ensure you will receive an appropriate level of UVA protection:

  • Ecamsule
  • Avobenzone
  • Oxybenzone
  • Titanium dioxide
  • Sulisobenzone
  • Zinc oxide

When you see one or more of these ingredients on the list, it means you have a good sunscreen in your hands.

3. Protect Your Face and Head

While sunscreen provides effective protection for your skin, you should always try to be as protected from the sun as you can be. It is recommended to wear additional protection when you are out and about in the sun, especially when the sun is at its peak. Wearing a hat with a brim that reaches out at least 2 or 3 inches all around will help to protect your face, neck and ears from damaging sun rays. Wearing sunglasses can also provide extra protection for your eyes and the skin around your eyes.

4. Don’t Forget to Protect Your Feet

People tend to put all their focus on protecting their face and upper body. It is important to realize that your feet represent a protruding horizontal surface and also poses a threat to damage from the sun. Protecting your feet should not go ignored. This can be done by simply applying some sunscreen to the top of the feet. This is, however, only necessary when you are not wearing shoes that cover the top of your feet while you are active in sun rays.

5. Your Eyes Need Protection Too

The skin around your eyes tends to show the effects of aging faster than other parts of your face. Sun rays are known to cause aging effects, thus protecting your eyes from these damaging UV rays is essential. Opt for both a pair of sunglasses that specifies it blocks UV rays, as well as an effective eye cream. By using one of the best eye creams on the market, you will be able to protect the skin around your eyes from sun damage, as well as provide an adequate amount of hydration to the area.


Your skin is precious and needs proper protection when exposed to the sun. Research shows that overexposure to the sun is the leading cause of skin cancer. To avoid skin damage caused by the sun, it is important to take precautions to keep the sun out of spots that are prone to get damaged faster, as well as the protect the rest of your body with an effective sunscreen. This will also help minimize the effects exposure to the sun has on your skin.

Sophie Addison is a popular blogger and skincare expert. She is very passionate about writing on skincare and beauty. She has posted articles on tips for fine lines under eyes, best eye creams, weight loss and  fitness news. In recent years, she had the opportunity to review AlluraCell. Apart from work she likes gardening and listening music. You can also contact her on Facebook, and Pinterest.