When it comes to sun damage we all know that prevention is better than cure. Alas, many of us were born prior to a sun-savvy era. Also, a lot of us know how important it is to wear sunscreen, but simply don’t do it and are now starting to see the effect it’s having on our skin. Fortunately, sun damage doesn’t have to be a life sentence. There are lots of things you can do to mitigate it and you’ll get the best results the earlier you start to take action.
Cause and effect
The one sun damage symptom people are most aware of is pigmentation, be it in the form of freckles or large, blotchy ‘sun spots’. Often, this will be immediate, in that you might come back from an island holiday and notice a bit of pigmentation on your cheeks. Still, much of the pigmentation caused by sun damage only surfaces later on. Sunscreen in your teens will start to become apparent when you hit your late thirties and find you seem to be ageing faster than your peers.
Still, pigmentation is just the tip of the ice berg. As unprotected sun exposure damages and depletes your skin’s collagen and elastin supply, you’ll also end up with wrinkles and loose skin. Another unwanted effect is exposure to UV light that weakens the walls of your capillaries, leading to broken blood vessels. But wait! There’s more! Sun damaged skin typically has a thicker, ‘dead’ and irregular epidermis that lets moisture escape, creating dull-looking, dehydrated skin with a ‘rough’ texture. All in all, it’s not a good look.
A real fix
Like we said, if you’re dealing with sun damaged skin, all is not lost. There are lots of things you can do to repair it and the first is to start using the right products. Ideally, you’re going to want to use topical treatments, be it moisturisers or serums, that contain proven collagen-boosting ingredients; those shown to minimise the look of pigmentation and things that can help exfoliate the surface of your skin to help it regain its smoothness.
Ingredients-wise, the most proven collagen-boosters are retinol and vitamin growth factors, better yet, both have the ability to reduce the look of pigmentation. As far as straight-up pigmentation-inhibiting ingredients go, there are many to choose from, and these include hydroquinone, niacinamide (vitamin B3), kojic acid and arbutin. In regard to improving your skin’s texture, you’ll find alpha hydroxy acids can do the trick and glycolic acid is the ‘first prize’ variant as it’s also able to help increase your skin’s collagen production.
Navigating the myriad of products on the shelf can be mind boggling so our suggestion is to make an appointment to see a doctor or therapist at Skin Renewal that can assess your skin and create a regime that’ll make a visible difference.
A little more help
If your sun damage is anything more than mild, you’re going to need more help and this is where our in-office Pigmentation & Sun Damage Solutions come in. After successfully treating sun damage for many years, we’ve found we get the very best results by taking a 3D approach – attacking the issue from multiple directions. This is why each of our solutions makes use of several treatments, not just one. They also range from mild to intensive, so your doctor or therapist can prescribe what’s best relating to the severity of your condition.
For example, our Starter Pigmentation and Sun Damage Solution is focused on improving texture, so it includes the application of tranexamic acid, something that’s excellent at improving pigmentation, and a SAMA peel. The latter is a mild, low pH peel using both mandelic and salicylic acid. It was originally created to help treat acne but now we use it to treat pigmentation, fine lines and a rough texture as it’s proven to be a great ‘all-rounder’.
Still, if you’ve got serious, deeply entrenched sun damage, you’ll want to break out the big guns like laser and light treatments. This is why our Grand Pigmentation and Sun Damage Solution consists of a whopping nine treatments including a Fraxel laser and Laser Genesis treatment. Both lasers are fantastic at encouraging your skin to produce more collagen while improving skin texture and minimising the look of pigmentation.
The bottom line
Ultimately you want to prevent sun damage, but if you have to treat it, your first step is to create a home care regime and, if your situation is severe, invest in several in-office treatments.
The doctors and therapists at Skin Renewal are very experienced when it comes to treating sun damaged skin and can help you with both aspects. Simply make an appointment to see us today and you’ll be on your way to a more even-toned as well as youthful-looking complexion. But in the meantime, don’t forget to wear your sunscreen!
This post was sponsored by Skin Renewal.
We’re big fans of Skin Renewal’s non-invasive approach to beauty. Defy the clock. Book an appointment with one of Skin Renewal’s experts today.