Before-and-after sun-care regime
Currently there are so many warnings about exposure to the sun that knowing how to protect your skin from harmful rays is quite daunting. Despite this mood of alarm, many people still like to sunbathe in moderation, especially on holiday. If you take sensible precautions and avoid excessive exposure to the sun, then a little moderate sunbathing need not be absolutely forbidden.
Great care must be taken when exposing your skin to the sun. The increasing prevalence of skin cancer is a major health caution, but exposing your skin to the sun for long periods of time, or with great frequency, also speeds up the ageing process. People who have sunbathed excessively develop a leathery skin texture, their suntan fades into a sallow yellow colour, and the general appearance of their skin is unattractive.
How to sunbathe safely
• Before sunbathing: to enjoy moderate exposure to the sun, first consider your complexion. If you have fair or red hair you will probably have fair skin and this can tolerate less sun than a darker complexion. Adjust the time spent in the sun accordingly. A week before starting to sunbathe, you need to start conditioning your skin. Do a couple of exfoliating body scrubs during the week to remove all dead skin cells. Apply a moisturizing body lotion daily with a 2 per cent dilution of essential oils that will nourish and protect the skin. Choose from patchouli, palmarosa, neroli, lavender and frankincense.
• During sunbathing: choose an appropriate-strength sunscreen lotion for your complexion, taking into consideration the strength of the sun in the area of the world where you will be. Avoid sunbathing between noon and 3 pm when the sun is hottest. Drink lots of water, wear a sunhat and above all do not spend too long in the sun, especially at the beginning.
• After sunbathing: cool the skin with a long, cold shower. Liberally apply a rich moisturizing body lotion with 1 per cent dilution of cooling, regenerating essential oils, such as roman chamomile, german chamomile, jasmine, lavender, neroli, carrot seed, rosewood and rose absolute.