Sunscreen

Woman applying sunscreen

Protect Your Skin from UV Rays and Chemicals with Safer Sunscreen

Wearing sun protection everyday is crucial if you want to age gracefully and keep your skin healthy. However, you might be leery of using a sunblock every single day due to the potential damage they may cause. There are those who believe that sunscreen does more harm than good due to the chemicals it contains being absorbed into the skin. But, you may not have to choose between no sun protection and sunscreens that penetrate the skin. Researchers at Yale University have developed a sunscreen that remains on the surface of the skin, making sun protection safe and simple.

What are Sunscreens and How do They Work?
Sunscreens are products that combine various ingredients for the purpose of preventing UV rays from reaching your skin. There are two types of UV rays: UVA and UVB. UVB rays are primarily responsible for causing visible burns, while UVA rays cause deeper skin damage, leading to signs of premature aging such as wrinkly or saggy skin.

Sunscreens use SPF (sun protection factor) to indicate how well a sunscreen protects your skin against damage from UVB rays. According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, SPF serves as a guide for how long you can safely expose yourself to the sun after applying sunscreen. “Here’s how it works: If it takes 20 minutes for your unprotected skin to start turning red, using an SPF 15 sunscreen theoretically prevents reddening 15 times longer – about five hours.”

Woman holding sunscreen bottle

What is “Safer” Sunscreen?
There is some general concern that sunscreens may actually do more harm than good. Some claim that the use of sunscreen creates a vitamin D deficiency, though many dermatologists do not believe this to be true. The other concern regarding sunscreen is that the chemicals within the sunscreen are absorbed into the skin thus entering the bloodstream and having deleterious effects. Nano particles that are designed to reflect or absorb cancer-causing UV rays may cause hormonal problems if they enter into the bloodstream, and some believe that this actually increases the risk of skin cancer. The dilemma becomes determining whether sunscreen protects against or encourages skin cancer.

Researchers at Yale University set out to address the problem chemical absorption and have created a sunblock that uses nano particles that are bio-adhesive. This means that rather than sink into your skin, sunblock remains on the surface of your skin. To make this possible, researchers at Yale developed nano particles with a surface that is rich in aldehyde groups. Aldehyde groups are what allow these nano particles to stick to the skin, not penetrate beneath it. Michael Girardi, co-author of this study, explained the motive for the research and the results stating, “commercial chemical sunblock is protective against the direct hazards of ultraviolet damage of DNA, but might not be against the indirect ones. In fact, the indirect damage was worse when we used the commercial sunblock.”

What are the Benefits of “Safer” Sunscreen?
If larger particles of titanium dioxide and zinc oxide are used in sunblock, they do prevent the product from sinking into the skin. However, many people won’t use these sunblocks because they are a very opaque white color. With the new Yale sunblock, there are nano particles (which makes the sunscreen transparent) that merely stick to the skin’s surface as opposed to going deeper. Major benefits of this new sunblock are:

  1. Does not penetrate into the skin or enter the bloodstream
  2. Is waterproof
  3. Is transparent.

When you protect yourself from ultraviolet light, you maintain healthy, youthful skin. With this promising development from Yale University, you can wear your sunblock each day without worrying about any damage that the chemicals may do to your body. Add sunscreen to your daily routine and apply about 20 minutes before heading out the door. Use about one ounce (the size of a standard shot glass) of the product and if you are going to be in the sun constantly, reapply every two hours or after immersing yourself in water.

Woman reading while on a vacation.

Don't Skip Good Habits on Vacation

You pay good attention to your health by eating well, exercising and taking great care of your skin. However, once you are taken out of your normal environment and are free of rigid schedules while on vacation, it can be so difficult to maintain your good habits. The following tips will help you stay on track during your vacation.

Woman jogging in a beach.

Live Well
Exercise may be the very last thing that you want to do but if you continue to exercise while on vacation, it makes getting back to your regular routine so much easier. If you have an entire gym routine that relies on equipment, you may find that you have to wait until you get back home to do everything you normally do. The great thing about vacation is that you likely are excited to spend time exploring your destination. Rather than hopping on a bus or into a cab, walk as much as possible. This benefits you in two ways; you are maintaining regular exercise and you will almost certainly find shops or eateries that you would otherwise miss and pass right by. Additionally, if you end up making purchases, carrying your items home can count as a bit of strength training. Another way to add a bit of movement into your day is to always opt for taking the stairs. Elevators and escalators are so tempting, but walking up and down stairs will burn calories and help you stay fit. If you feel really motivated to workout, you can always look up hotels with fitness equipment and stay there or search for a local place to workout such as a yoga studio.

Dishes served in a fine dining restaurant.

Eat Well
One of life’s greatest pleasures is eating and going to a new place is often culinary bliss. You should definitely be looking for food and drinks that are unique to the region you are in, but be careful not to overindulge. Rather than ordering full sizes of rich and heavy dishes, order a half size or try several small plates of appetizers. Same goes for dessert, when possible of course. Sampling allows you to try all of the local flavors without feeling super guilty and making it hard to go back to a healthy diet at home. However, in the event that you do indulge your food cravings (new foods are so fun and exciting!) you can always put in a little bit of extra walking.

Woman sunbathing in a beach

Look Well 
Taking good care of your skin is extra important on vacation as methods of travel can remove moisture from your skin (specifically airplane travel) and new environmental concerns may upset your skin as well. The first thing you need to remember is to always apply your sunscreen. Not only are UV rays incredibly harmful to your health, but getting a bad sunburn on vacation is never fun. Next, keep your skin care routine as close to normal as possible. Take travel sizes of your normal cleanser, toner, exfoliant and moisturizer. Never go to bed with your makeup on and add in a bit of extra moisturizer.

Vacation definitely is a time to let loose and enjoy yourself, but you also should practice your good habits while having fun. Remember to always stay well hydrated, particularly in the heat and don’t forget the sunscreen. Have a great time relaxing and enjoying new experiences while sticking with your good habits.

Man getting ready to groom himself.

Grooming Guide for Guys

Men have different standards and practices than women when it comes to personal grooming. It often requires a bit less time, a lot less product and is more of a maintaining personal appearance than working towards prevention of signs of aging. However, just because guys grooming is less involved than their women counterparts, that does not mean that it does not need to be done. Resveralife provides a complete grooming guide for guys.

Guy washing his face with water.

Face
Okay, so you probably aren’t interested in cleansing, toning, applying serums then eye creams then moisturizer, but there are a few things you can do to benefit your face. First, do make sure you exfoliate it about two to three times per week to help clear out your pores, reduce sebum and take away dead skin cells. You can use either a facial scrub designed to exfoliate or a chemical exfoliant such as Paula’s Choice 2% BHA Perfecting Liquid, which has salicylic acid to help gently exfoliate your skin daily.

Man applying a moisturizer.

Once your face is clean it is a good idea to add a bit of moisture back in. A bonus is if you use a moisturizer with a built-in SPF of 25 or higher. Look for moisturizers with vitamins A, C, E and resveratrol to help slow the signs of aging. And for men with a beard, investing in some beard oil to help soften and strengthen your facial hair is a great idea. Keep all facial hair neatly trimmed, including rogue eyebrow hairs and nose hairs.

Guy getting his back waxed in a salon.

Body
Body care for men is pretty much a functional issue. Keep yourself clean, prevent body odor and you’re good to go, right? Kind of. Of course you need to use soap of body wash to cleanse your body and a deodorant is definitely an important step in grooming. But there are other things you can add to your routine to take grooming a bit farther.

Chest hair is definitely becoming a more popular trend with celebrities sporting hairy, rather than waxed, chests. Still, if you have abnormally long chest hairs you can use your razor on a long setting to take down both the length and some of the volume.

While chest hair is pretty much the norm now, nobody likes back hair. This one you probably don’t want to attempt on your own. It sounds super “The 40 Year Old Virgin,” but waxing is what male grooming experts recommend. The back, as opposed to the chest, is far less sensitive to waxing and is one of the easiest areas for waxing. Before you go take a dose of Advil to help control inflammation and pain and afterwards do not apply any product to your back for about 24-48 hours to minimize irritation.

If your arm and shoulder hair bother you, you could go ahead and shave that as well, though waxing leaves the hairs that grow back a bit finer than when shaving.

The guys guide to grooming is undoubtedly shorter than one for ladies would be, but it is an important guide. Taking proper care of your body, and appearance, has a positive impact on your entire life.

Sunscreen on woman's shoulder outdoors

Are You Wearing the Right Sun Protection?

You know you need to protect yourself from the sun and harmful UV rays. You know to apply sunscreen before you head outside and even to reapply often or after being in water. But is the sun protection you are using right for you? Check out Resveralife’s guide below on how to be sure you are wearing the most effective sun protection possible.

Little girl wearing a hat and sunglasses holding a sunscreen bottle in a beach.

Kids
You need to keep the entire family protected, especially your little ones. Children have more reactive, sensitive skin than adults, so the type of sun protection you choose for them should be suitable for sensitive skin types. Kids tend to tolerate physical sunscreens better than they do chemical sunscreens as chemical sunscreens contain active ingredients like PABA and oxybenzone which have been associated with irritation.

Woman wearing a hat applying sunscreen.

Acne Prone Skin
Acne is a common problem and many people believe that sunscreens tend to increase blemishes and breakouts. The first thing to check in your sun protection, like any other skin care product for acne prone skin, is that it is free from unnecessary preservatives and fragrances. Some sunscreens are available in gel formulas that may suit acne or oily prone skin better than a traditional liquid. Just as with children, the most frequently cited aggravating active ingredients in sun care products are PABAs and oxybenzone. Physical sunscreens tend to work well for people who suffer from acne. If you are opposed to the thick white cast these can leave, look for a chemical sunscreen with salicylates or ecamsule. Note that if you are on a prescription medication for acne, it is best to consult with your doctor because some of these medications increase sensitivity to the sun.

Woman applying sunscreen on her hands.

Dry Skin
If you have dry skin, look for a sunscreen that contains moisturizer or a moisturizer that contains sunscreen. Many cosmetic and skin care companies now make day creams with an SPF in them already. Sunscreens that contain moisturizing ingredients such as lanolin, oils and dimethicones (silicone) tend to be appropriate for dry skin. Formulations of sunscreens with added moisture are often marketed as creams, lotions or even ointments.

If you are already using a sunscreen that is perfect for your skin type and your needs, that is awesome. However, dermatologists and skin care experts warn that even if you have the perfect sunscreen, not wearing enough renders the protection virtually useless. As a general rule you should be applying an ounce of sunscreen every single time you plan on getting sun exposure. If you are just covering your face, use about the size of a silver dollar to ensure proper coverage. Sunscreen has a shelf life of one to two years, so if you have a bottle from last year it is probably safe to use. Remember that the most effective sunscreen is the one that you apply every day and that you use the proper amount of. If using a chemical sunscreen, apply the product 20 minutes before sun exposure to allow time for it to absorb. Once out in the sun, reapply your sunscreen (with a full ounce of product) every two hours or more often if you have been swimming.

Woman bathing in a beach.

Sun Care Industry Updates

Sun protection is without a doubt on of the most discussed components of the skin care and cosmetic industries. Expert after expert offers advice on how to properly protect your skin and dermatologists warn about what happens if you fail to adequately protect your skin. So, it’s pretty simple right? Throw on a sunscreen before you go outside in bright weather and you’re good to go. Not so according to the experts. There are two different types of sunscreen (chemical and physical) from which you must choose, a large variety of SPFs and labels such as waterproof and water-resistant. The skin care industry is large and full of technology and innovations. Resveralife presents some of the most exciting updates from the skin care industry.

Types of Sun Damage
We know that UVA and UVB rays are our enemies when it comes to the sun. There is a plethora of information about what sunscreens or sun products most effectively absorb or deflect UV rays. However, on of the lesser known dangers is infrared radiation. The research on infrared radiation started several years ago, though the impact that it has on your skin is just now beginning to be made public. The Coty company has spent years researching infrared radiation and their Research and Development director Marc Pissavini had the following to say “the industry was focused on UV more so than infrared, as infrared is quite new. Now we are seeing more raw material suppliers offering an infrared solution. We are now seeing more people talking about infrared – it is the beginning of this focus and theses products.” The products he refers to include a formulation with reflecting pigment and antioxidants to fight free radicals while protecting your skin from the sun.

Woman drawing the sun using sunscreen on her back.

Multiple Purpose Sun Care Products
The sun and skin care industry is beginning to focus on products that a multi-functional and can accomplish several things with a single formula. As a general rule, it is easier to to maintain skin health and be proactive than it is to repair already damaged skin. Now more than ever before you can purchase a moisturizer or day cream that contains SPF, eliminating the need for multiple steps in your skin care routine. Additionally, there is a focus on creating cosmetic products that contain an SPF, especially foundations and powders.

Global Sun Care Regulations
There are countries that are far more serious about sun care than the United States. For instance, people in Asia avoid the sun at all costs and routinely apply sun care products. The focus on global sun care regulations concerns these aspects: labeling, testing and ingredients used. Experts in the skin care and cosmetics field want to ultimately harmonize sunscreens globally. There are several major considerations when attempting to globally harmonize sunscreens. The major issues are issues of semantics and language. For instance, on labeling in North America, the ingredients in sunscreens are classified as drugs. In Europe, these same ingredients are classified as cosmetics. Language also plays a significant role in hamonization of sunscreen. Ideally the goal is to provide the most effective sunscreen products with the most comprehensive labeling and usage directions.

Continuous improvements in the sun and skin care industry can be difficult to keep up with. Staying informed on the technological advances helps you best protect your skin.