You aren’t supposed to have fine lines in your early 30’s for starters…
“Sunscreen? But I'm not at the beach.”
That right there is the mindset that leads people down the path to premature wrinkles, uncorrectable fine lines and tough-to-remove dark spots—basically, hitting fast forward on the skin’s aging timeline. Sadly, no volume of anti-aging product is going to salvage this if they fail to enforce the skin’s true first line of defense: sun protection.
Wearing sunscreen is a must even when you aren’t on vacation, getting a tan at the beach or lounging by the pool. Regardless of the weather condition, SPF is a daily essential. That’s right: rainy and cloudy days and being indoors are no exception. With the rapid thinning of the ozone layer, there’s little left to filter ultraviolet rays before they make their way to the surface of the earth. And we need to be applying and reapplying sunscreen every day now more than ever.
“Over 90 percent of aging of the skin is sun-induced.”
You can throw caution to the wind and rely on the fact that you hit the genetic lottery; your 80-year-old lola looks like she’s in her 60’s, so why sweat it? However, internal factors of aging controlled by genetics can only do so much. Chronic sun damage is still, by far, the biggest contributor to premature aging.
Prolonged exposure to UV radiation is the culprit to be exact. Dermatologist and anti-aging techniques specialist Dr. Adrienne Denese reveals: “The most important step a young woman (or man) needs to take is to use sun protection 365 days a year. Over 90 percent of aging of the skin is sun-induced.” Unsightly signs of this include: sagging of the skin, wrinkles and fine lines (if you’re only in your 30’s and you have these, consider it a red flag), sun spots and moles and a change in skin texture over time (read: dry and leather). In extreme cases, prolonged UV exposure can lead to skin cancer, eye inflammation and cataract development.
There’s a major flaw in attempting to reverse signs of skin aging: When damage is already pretty hard to ignore, it will entail twice the work and will come out more expensive. This may mean adding an extra step involving retinoids to your skincare routine or springing for medical-grade Hydroquinones. Another viable option is to head to the dermatologist’s clinic for corrective laser skin resurfacing treatments. Good for the skin, bad for the wallet.
The major issue with trying to reverse the damage is that corrective measures aren’t as effective as preventive ones. Reactively troubleshooting signs of skin aging only aids the skin in its recovery; naturally, however, skin doesn’t bounce back as quickly as people age. Cell regeneration is slower, skin loses its elastic tissue and the production of collagen declines. Stunt further damage by protecting your skin before scrambling to treat it. Get things right off the bat by wearing sunscreen.
SUPERGOOP! City Sunscreen Serum SPF 30, P2,389
HAPPY SKIN Catch The Sun Brightening UV Gel Cream SPF 40, P999
VMV HYPOALLERGENICS Armada: Face & Body Shield 60, P1,723
NEOGEN Day-Light Protection Sunscreen SPF 50, P1,150
ESFOLIO Blue Flower Sun Cream, P549
MILK Dry Touch SPF 50+ Sunscreen Lotion, P1,772
The end goal isn’t to fight aging, but to age gracefully. Who wants their skin to age sooner than it has to anyway? Add sunscreen to your skincare routine today and you’ll thank yourself 20 years from now.
Art Ara Custodio