Staying Safe in the Sun Naturally
The sunshine. It’s brilliant.
We all long for those long sunny summer days and with good reason.
When sunlight hits our skin it triggers the body’s production of vitamin D, our “sunshine vitamin” which boosts immunity, reduces inflammation, relaxes muscles, improves brain function and alleviates depression. What a lot of us don’t realize is that it is important not to wash your skin for at least 24 hours before sun exposure in order for this process to function optimally as the natural oils on your skin are a crucial part.
Whilst the sun is important for our health it is important to be takes steps to look after our skin and keep it glowing and healthy.
My advice for this is:
Hydration – Your skin is made up of millions of cells, which are primarily water. When you are dehydrated your skin will retract (like a piece of fruit does as it dries up) and this will stretch the muscles in the skin leading to wrinkles as well as feeling dry and flaky.
Drinking at least 2 litres of water each day will avoid this happening.
Time – Choose your time carefully. We all know the hottest time of the day is midday when the sun is directly overhead. For two hours either side of this time of the day it is wise to stay out of direct sunlight. So wear a hat, use an umbrella or fin some shade. We were not made to cook ourselves.
Sunscreens- Your skin is the largest organ of your body and absorbs what it touches. It’s interesting to notice that in the years since sunscreen use began, skin cancer rates have actually risen. This may be due in part to the fact that many sunscreens contain petrochemicals and endocrine-disrupting chemicals such as oxybenzone, which is a hormone disruptor. These things end up in our body.
When looking for sunscreen it is important to look for ones with pure ingredients like zinc oxide.
Zinc Oxide – Not only does regular sunscreen pollute your body, they increasingly are polluting our sea. If you imagine every time someone on the beach goes swimming sunscreen is washing into the water. With water pollution in the UK on the increase it’s important to try and make small changes to address it.
Zinc oxide is the most natural of the sun protectors. It forms a whitish coating on the skin that blocks the suns rays and is fully biodegradable.
You can by this on its own and combine with natural ingredients such as coconut oil or shea butter for application.
After suns like a lot of sunscreens on the market are chemical based and rather ineffective in reducing the trapped heat in the skin.
Essential oils like lavender combined with plant juice of aloe vera and a pure plant oil base such as borage of jojoba is the most effective way to rehydrate your skin and reduce inflammation and redness.
As a homeopath I also recommend taking Sol , Urtica urens or Belladonna 30c in potency as these have worked effectively for me over the years so are good for keeping in the first aid kit.
Oat bath– As a lover of oats I also recommend a soothing oat bath for reducing inflammation and itchiness in the skin.
You can fill an old pair of tights with some of our organic oats and leave it in the bath as you run it.
This is a great system for your nervous system too.
Stay safe in the Sun this summer!