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UVR (Ultra Violet Radiation)

21 February 2022

Possibly the biggest threat the skin faces daily. Silently working behind the scenes undoing every process our cells undergo to maintain homeostasis. It’s impact on the skin is often underestimated until it’s too late.

We usually think to reach for our SPF when we know we’re going to be in the sun for an extended period of time or on a hot summers day when we step outside and feel the warmth of the suns rays on our skin. However the effects of daily exposure lie well below the skins surface.

UVR is broken down into 3 Regions:

UVB (Burning Rays)- Short wavelengths that reach the Epidermal layers. These rays are the warmth we feel and are responsible for sunburn and skin cancers.

UVA (Aging Rays) – Longer wavelengths reaching the Dermis less dangerous than UVB however contributes to premature aging.

UVC – Extremely dangerous rays that are blocked by the Ozone layer. Phew!

It’s important to note that UVR can reach a person in 3 different ways.

  • Directly from the sun
  • Scattered from the open sky
  • Reflected off a surface.

This is enough information to make the average person reach for the SPF tube. But how do we convince those that don’t Feel SPF is important enough to be wearing daily? Here’s a few educational tips you can use in your next consultation.

UVB rays burn and project warmth on the skin. This is often the reason and possibly the only reason why a client will apply their SPF. The more we get burnt the more severe we burn and the higher the risk of skin damage and skin cancers. UVB is at its highest risk between 11am and 2pm and more so in summer than winter. Using an SPF will prevent burning and Epidermal damage.

UVA rays however are the silent rays. Reaching our dermal layer, the layer that houses our skins structural proteins. These rays trigger the constant action of MMP’s (collagenase and elastase enzymes) responsible for the breakdown of redundant protein fibres. Constant stimulation of these enzymes results in premature aging due to the breakdown of healthy collagen and elastin. These rays are most active all day long and all year round! Using an SPF will help prevent the risk of premature aging and assist with maintaining new and healthy skin structures.

This is the reason SPF is a critical component to all home care regimes and in my opinion the number 1 anti aging product a client can use.