No matter how judicious we may be about applying sunscreen, it seems we still end up with a sunburn somewhere on our body. For some people, this may happen because they have photosensitive skin due to an illness or condition. For many of us, it's because we don't realize (or we forget) that certain areas of skin on our body are thinner and therefore more easily damaged by the sun. Or, it's because it's a body part we forget to protect. Let's take a look at some of the most common body parts we forget to protect from the sun and why they are more vulnerable and require extra special protection.
Look down at your hands. You likely see a lot more veins there than on your arms or legs. This is because the skin on your hands is very thin and thin skin is more vulnerable to damage. As you age, your hands will be the first body part to give away your age. One of the reasons many of us don't protect our hands is because we don't like the feeling of sunscreen on our hands. After we apply sunscreen on our body, we tend to wash our hands afterward, removing any protection you had just applied to your hands. It's also easier for sunscreen to wear off on our hands as we frequently wipe them with towels to remove any dirt, liquid, or oil. For your hands, I recommend protecting them with Sundriven's UV wear gloves, rather than sunscreen. Your hands will always be protected, they'll never feel greasy, and you won't have to worry about reapplying. They're also fashionable and contain other skin benefits!
Your Chest and Neck
Your chest (or décolletage) and neck is another area of thin skin and an age giveaway. As you get older, a sun damaged chest and neck may appear splotchy with brown spots and wrinkles. While we may apply sunscreen to our arms, it seems many of us easily forget to cover our chest and back of our neck. Or, we choose not to because of the shiny, oily appearance some sunscreens give. In summer, we already tend to sweat around the chest area, so the last thing we want is an even greasier appearance, especially as this can cause clogged pores and acne. Instead of sunscreen, try a scarf. I know that sounds bizarre to do in summer, but Sundriven creates several UV wear scarf options, all of which are made from a fabric that actually keeps your skin feeling cool when it's hot. And with fashionable cuts and muted colors, you won't feel silly wearing them all summer long, whether it's over a bathing suit or paired with jeans.
Your Ears and Scalp
These two areas are often neglected from sun protection for two very different reasons, but there's one solution that can help. First, when it comes to your ears, we often don't protect them because we just forget. When applying sunscreen to our face, our ears somehow always seem to go unnoticed. With your scalp, it's simply because you can't apply sunscreen on your head (unless you want greasy, matted hair). Even hair products that claim to include UVA/UVB protection don't have the power to entirely protect your head. This calls for one of two things - a hood or a hat. For a hood, this can be from a sweater, jacket, or hooded scarf. For a hat, I don't mean a baseball cap, as this won't protect your ears. Instead, go for a wide brim hat, like a fedora or Panama hat.
Author: Melissa Darcey