Sun Safety for All
It's summertime. It's hot. And we all want to be our best golden bronze selves. To quote the great Drake, "gold, no spray tan." So - of course - our go to method of achieving such flawless skin is to lay out in the sun all day. However, there are prolonged sun exposure comes at a hefty price. If you think that people of color don't need sunscreen either... you're wrong. The truth is we're all at risk of damage from the sun. From skin discoloration, early aging to developing skin cancer, laying out in the sun is no joke.
By Brianna Allen
Rule #1: Use sunscreen (at least SPF 30) everyday - even if it's cloudy.
Aim to apply the product 15 to 30 minutes before going outside for proper absorption. Broad-spectrum sunscreen is the best type of sunscreen because it filters UVA and UVB rays.
Rule #2: Know your rays.
According to, WebMD UVA is the sunlight that causes wrinkles and can lead to skin cancer, while UVB causes sunburns and can also lead to skin cancer. So, it is critical to make sure your sunscreen protects against both.
Rule #3: Beat the breakouts.
Often many people find using sunscreen on your face can lead to acne or break outs. Instead it is recommended to find a daily moisturizer with sunscreen or a foundation that has at least SPF 15.
Rule #4: Doesn't matter how dark you are. You still need sunscreen.
People of color tend to believe that the pigment of their skin protects them from the sun exposure in comparison to others with fair skin. The truth is pigmented skin does help to some extent, but sunscreen is still needed to provide full coverage and protection. This false belief is one of the main causes of hyperpigmentation in skin of people of color. Hyperpigmentation is when certain parts of your skin become darker than others or blotchy due to sun exposure. People of color with darker skin are more likely to scar and have an uneven skin complexion, which is why sunscreen is essential because it is harder to get rid of the dark marks on their skin.
Rule #5: Head to toe.
A major area that receives a lot of sun exposure, but we fail to think about is your scalp. Most of the time, applying sunscreen to your scalp can make the hair appear too oily and weighed down. To avoid this, you can wear a hat to keep the scalp protected, which is a plus because it even adds more coverage for your face. But, for some people of color braids are a huge trend for the summertime, which means a hat cannot fit over the braids. Trust me, tried that one! In this case I would recommend coating your scalp with oils or spray liquid leave-in conditioners that contain ingredients with active UV protection such as, Vitamin E oil or Mauritia Flexuosa (Buriti) Oil. A few of my favorite products are the Infusium 23 Colourologie Leave-In Treatment, the Ion Inspired by Nature Nourishing Oil Treatment and the ApHogee Keratin & Green Tea Restructurizer. In simpler terms, anything with Vitamin E will protect your scalp!
So, before you hit the beach or the pool this summer make sure you are protected from the sun with your sunscreen (that is not expired), sunglasses and hats in hand.