Muslim Eve\’s Ramblings

July 13, 2006

Summer Care Tips

Filed under: Ladies interests — Me2 @ 9:24 pm



Everyone tries to take the maximum indulgence in the sun, sea, and fun during the summer and in the midst of it all you neglect to care for your hair and skin as much as needed. The result is that by the end of each summer you find your hair somewhat damaged, thinning, fly-outs, or even frizzy…etc, and your skin completely burned and inconsistently peeling-off. So you make a promise to yourself that it won’t happen again and that you’ll start being more disciplined and treat your hair and skin with more care the next summer. Well, that next summer has already started and is as bright and sunny as ever, and even more so at the beaches, swimming pools and open areas. Remember, it is time to keep your promise before it is too late, otherwise, you will need to spend months fixing the damages you caused to your skin, and particularly your hair. This article will give you detailed tips and advice on how to take the necessary care required to protect your hair from damage and your skin from blemishes, wrinkles, and most importantly, cancer on the long run, God forbids. Part I of this article series tackles summer skin safety, whereas part II will discuss hair health and summer hair care along with our designated corner of “Ask Fulan” interviewing the prominent hair stylist Mr. Ahmed —– within the next two weeks. You can send us all the questions and concerns you have about your hair health and looks and Wasfa in association with “Ahmed & Abdou” the reputable beauty salon will be here to answer your questions. I hope you enjoy the utmost fun this summer and every summer safe and sound…

Summer Skin Safety

Your only natural protection from the sun is the melanin in your skin — a chemical that absorbs harmful UV (ultraviolet) rays and reacts with the sun to cause tanning. The amount of melanin in the skin varies greatly from person to person, and so does the amount of time someone can safely spend in the sun. Certainly, fair complexion is much more sensitive to sea and sun than dark toned complexion. Of course, we Egyptians are much luckier than many other nationalities that are fair-skinned as the latter are much vulnerable to the risk of cancer. However, melanin can only do so much to protect you, but to keep your skin truly safe you need a sunscreen/sunblock.

If you’re going to be in the sun for more than 20 minutes, use a broad-spectrum sunscreen that protects against both UVA and UVB rays and contains a sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 15. SPF can go all the way up to 52 for people who get badly burned once exposed to sun, or for those who want the maximum protection from sun rays. Put sunscreen on indoors and let it dry for 20 to 30 minutes before you go outside. This gives the chemicals in the sunscreen time to soak in and become activated before you hit the sun. Reapply it every two hours if you’ve been in water or out sweating in the sun — even if you’re using waterproof sunscreen.
And don’t forget your kids! According to recent studies, eighty percent of a person’s sun damage is acquired before the age of 18. Every time a child gets a sunburn, their chances of getting skin cancer later in life are significantly increased. Take charge of your kids’ sun exposure and make sure they’re sun safe. But never use sunscreen on a baby under six months old – instead, keep them completely covered with clothing and a wide-brimmed hat.

More skin-savvy tips:

  • Avoid the sun between 10:00am and 3:00pm, when the sun’s rays are strongest. If this is impractically doable, do your best to avoid sun between 11:30am and 1:30pm when sun’s rays are vertically straight on earth.
  • Use higher SPF numbers on the first couple of days of your constant exposure to sun, then you go down gradually to lower SPF numbers in case you want to get nicely tanned and not to have your skin peeled off.
  • Use sunscreen even on cloudy days – UV rays can penetrate cloud cover.
  • If you’re fair skinned or know you burn easily, keep covered and avoid the sun, If necessary, use higher SPF numbers for prolonged exposure.
  • If you can, opt for a seat in the shade.
  • Wear clothing made of tightly woven fabric so the sun can’t slip in.
  • Try to avoid reflective surfaces, such as water and sand, which can reflect as much as 85 percent of the sun’s rays. Even if you sit or lie down in shade, try to put a towel underneath you so your skin is not in a direct contact with sand.
  • Avoid wearing perfumes. Also, avoid perfumed lotions or sun oils because they contain alcohol, just like perfumes, that causes skin stains, marks, or blemishes.
  • Use lip balm with sunscreen – your lips contain no melanin and will burn easily.
  • Use after-sun moisturizing facial and body lotions to restore the moisture evaporated from your skin while being directly exposed to sunlight.
  • If you are above 30, use after-sun facial and body lotions that contain collagen to avoid early wrinkles.
  • Be aware that certain medications, including some antibiotics, dramatically increase sun sensitivity. Check with your doctor.
  • Drink large quantity of water, and generally, double your intake of liquids to avoid dehydration. Drink juices that are rich in vitamin C and E such as orange, strawberry, and kiwi to keep your skin tenderness and freshness. Try to avoid coke soft drinks because they relatively oxidize vitamins- they become less nutritious.
  • Drink carrot and tomato juices frequently for easier and faster tan. Carrot and tomato increase the amount of melanin in your skin, which helps you get the tanned look quickly.
  • And don’t forget your eyes! Wear sunglasses that provide 100 percent UV protection, to prevent eye cancer or cataracts, which may result in blindness.

Sometimes no matter how carefully you apply sun block, you still miss a spot somewhere and get burned. Luckily, you don’t have to suffer the pain of sunburn for long.

Try this: Within 24 hours after sun exposure or as soon as your skin turns pink, take a dose of aspirin (follow label instructions). This pill relieves sunburn pain, reduces inflammation and redness, and may even prevent the DNA and skin damage that sunlight ultraviolet causes. (Note: Don’t take aspirin if your doctor has advised against it.)

Finally, the only safe way to enjoy the summer sun is to resist the temptation of lying down long hours trying to get the best possible lovely tan. Remember, it all depends on your will power. So, try to limit your exposure to sun and keep yourself covered. Don’t let your summer fun cloud your future skin health.

In case you got sunstroke, here you’re a perfect remedy to it. Put a very small pinch of salt in your ears, then, using a cotton mop, squeeze one or two water drops in each ear. They’ll dry instantly taking out the heat from your head and body.

Face Masks:
Cucumber mask is perfect for your face complexion in summer. It restores moisture, gently neutralizing dehydration caused by sunlight and high temperature. Also, full-cream milk, egg yellows, carrot oil, and olive oil mixed altogether make another recommended mask in summer time.

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