Ask the expert: 5 tips for smart sun behaviour (that we ALL need to read)
Feeling the sun on your face is pretty much one of life greatest pleasures.
Especially for us here in Ireland, that is pretty much deprived of heat and sunshine for long stretches of the year.
However, let's also remember that skin cancer is the most common cancer in Ireland and that the Irish Cancer Society warns that we are facing an epidemic of the disease with urgent steps needed to bring down rates. In fact, current figures predict an increase of two thirds by 2040 when numbers are expected to rise to 19,000 cases per year.
So staying safe in the sun is important, both for yourself, and especially for children, whose skin is even more sensitive than ours.
We recently caught up with the experts at La Roche-Posay, who just launched their 'Save Our Skin' campaign in partnership with the Irish Cancer Society, to chat all things summer and sun safety, and here are their top five tips:
1. Use sunscreen every single day
Apply sunscreen with SPF 30 for adults and SPF 50 for children 20 minutes before going outside. Apply more frequently when at the beach or beside the pool as sand and water reflect the sun's rays and UVA.
2. Seek shade
When UV rays are at their strongest between 11am and 3pm, try to stay out of the sun as much as possible. Don't forget to check the UV index which measures the UV radiation levels.
3. Cover up
Wear a shirt with a collar and sleeves and long shorts. Also remember to wear a hat which gives shade to your face, neck and ears. Wear wraparound sunglasses and make sure they give UV protection.
4. Sun-safe babies
Because infants' skin is so sensitive, sunscreen is not recommended for babies under six months, and so it is better to simply keep them out of the sun. Once your baby gets to six months, you can start using a child-friendly sunscreen. Choose a broad-spectrum, water-resistant sunscreen that offers a minimum sun protection factor (SPF) of 50, like La Roche-Posay Dermo Kids SPF 50+.
5. Keep it handy
Just like your keys, phone, wallet and sunglasses, a travel-sized SPF should also be on your check-list when leaving the house for the day. Keep an eye on the time, as you should reapply the same amount every two hours for maximum protection. La Roche-Posay Anthelios Shaka Ultra-Light Fluid SPF 50+ is the perfect travel partner at 50ml, and is also water-, sweat-, and rub-resistant.