Long before green juices, before smoothies, before bottled pomegranate juices,…
As if time and gravity weren’t enough! It seems there are also factors waiting to accelerate the aging process and negatively affect our health every time we step outside the door. That’s right, I’m talking about the elements! Lucky for us, there are many products available on the market to protect us from these potential beauty and health hazards. But which one is right for us?
With sun protection being an ongoing concern in the health and beauty industry it is probably no surprise that sunscreen tops our list. According to Web MD, we want a sunscreen that not only blocks UVB rays which cause sunburn, but UVA rays that cause wrinkles and cancer. An SPF of 30 or higher, will sufficiently block UVB rays. To ensure you are also being protected against UVA rays, look for a broad spectrum sunscreen that contains ingredients like ecamsule, avobenzone, oxybenzone, titanium dioxide or zinc oxide.
Sun, salt water, excessive cold or heat can be damaging to your hair. Using an oil spray before you go into water can protect your hair from dehydrating effects. A leave-in conditioner will also keep salt and chlorine from penetrating your hair while maintaining moisture. The Silke Von Rolbiezki salon recommends using one with a sunscreen. Wash your hair with a moisturizing and clarifying shampoo to get rid of chemicals that remain in your hair. If the cold is drying out your hair, use ionic and ceramic hair tools if you style your hair. These penetrate the hair shaft more evenly and quickly protecting it from unnecessary heat and neutralize the electric charge of damaged hair to prevent further damage. She also recommends moisture rich conditioner and hair treatments.
Of course, if hair dries out when exposed to the elements, you can only imagine what it is doing to our skin. That’s why choosing the right moisturizer is important as well. It’s all about the ingredients. Dimethicone is a useful ingredient found in oil-free moisturizers that can help fill in uneven texture and fine lines. Petrolatum is great for preventing water loss and hydrating rough, dead skin cells, but can also exacerbate greasy skin. Hyaluronic acid can plump and soften skin. Glycerin absorbs and retains water to keep skin smooth and hydrated. Ceramides are fats naturally found in the skin’s outer layer and are crucial for maintaining the skin’s natural moisture barrier.
Insect bites are not only annoying and unsightly, they can be deadly. With mosquitos and ticks carrying diseases like West Nile Virus and Lyme Disease, insect repellent is often a necessity. The CDC recommends using products that have active ingredients approved by the Environmental Protection Agency. Two of these which have proven to be the most effective are DEET and Picaridin. A higher percentage of the active ingredient is directly related to how long the repellent will be effective.
So hit the drug stores and get ready for some outdoor fun!