How does blemished skin react after sun exposure?

The sun can be the enemy of both teens and adults with acne-prone skin. At first, it seems to miraculously improve the skin by drying out pimples. But, tanning actually thickens the epidermis which progressively blocks pores. This makes it more difficult for sebum (which is thicker in acne-prone skin) to flow freely.

You don’t notice anything until the tan fades.At that point, the pores produce pimples because they have been blocked for weeks and because the thicker sebum cannot flow freely.

This is the classic post-sun blemish rebound effect. People with blemished skin should protect themselves from the sun with special oily skin creams that will make the sebum more fluid and smooth the skin’s texture to prevent this condition. They provide a non-greasy finish and sometimes come in tinted versions. They are formulated to mattify the complexion and help you avoid unpleasant surprises when you get back from your holiday.

By definition, sensitive, intolerant or allergic skin reacts excessively to its environment. So, sun exposure is highly discouraged. It is strongly recommended that people with these skin types apply a photoprotective product. However, it is important to differentiate among the issues to find the best solution.

Your skin - child protected under the sun

If you have had a surgical or cosmetic procedure or an injury in an area that may be exposed to the sun, you have a higher risk of hyperpigmentation if the healing process has not been completed.

This can take eight to 12 months or longer. If it is not fully healed, the mark can become brownish and may become permanent. This is a risk during the summer, as well as all throughout the year. UVA rays are everywhere, during all seasons; they travel through clouds and windows. So, people with damaged skin or spots need to choose a protective product to apply to any damaged skin exposed to light. 

  • Dr Michèle Sayag, allergologist
    Dr Michèle Sayag, Allergologist.

    An internet user’s question : What is the best sun protection factor for baby skin?

    Up to eighteen months old, you are strongly recommended to keep your baby out of the sun. However when exposure cannot be avoided, you should use a product with SPF 50+ that will provide sufficient protection against UVA rays. Up to the age of 3, you should use mineral-based sun creams (not ones with chemical filters).

    Dr Michèle Sayag, Allergologist.

First, keep kids in the shade and dress them in protective clothing!

Your Skin - A dad with his son

It’s best to keep kids out of the sun; in fact, children under three months should NEVER be exposed. Children’s skin is thin and fragile. It has fewer defences against UV rays; sunburn and heat stroke happen faster. Physicians regularly remind us that sunburns in childhood can have very serious consequences later in life. Responsible parents must follow a few simple, essential rules.

  • Do not intentionally expose them to sun, especially between 11 am and 4 pm; Put protective clothing on children: a hat, sunglasses and a long-sleeve t-shirt, preferably in a dark colour;
  • Apply a high protection SPF 50+ sun cream or a product specially formulated for kids every two hours. Remember to re-apply it after each swim or after rubbing from things like playing in the sand or wiping off with a towel;
  • You should also give them water to drink often throughout the day to rehydrate them.

Key points

  1. Even if only certain areas are sensitive to sun exposure, such as your face, remember to protect the rest of your body and follow standard sun safety tips, which you can read here.
  2. During periods of sun exposure, remember to keep your skin hydrated and continue using your regular skin care products, unless advised otherwise by a physician. It is particularly important to consult a doctor when using medicated treatments that may cause photosensitivity.

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