Mary E. Parsons

Skin Care for All Seasons

Many of us pay extra attention to skin care in the summer, but as the season ends, there are still reasons to take precautions. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), it can take only 15 minutes for the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays to damage your skin. Here are some suggestions to remind employees about their skin care at any time of the year:

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Limit Exposure

The National Institutes for Health (NIH) noted to be especially careful to stay out of the sun, if possible, between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. This is when the sun’s rays are most intense. Plan your time outside to include use of a sun umbrella or other covered space.

Use Sunscreen

The CDC suggested using broad spectrum sunscreen every time you go outside, even if it’s a cloudy day. Sunscreens are rated by sun protection factor (SPF), which rates the effectiveness of blocking UV rays. Higher SPF numbers indicate more effectiveness, but it’s recommended that the sunscreen be at least SPF 15.

Periodically reapply sunscreen, especially if you’re enjoying the water at the beach or engaging in sporting activities. The effectiveness of sunscreen will lessen over time, so check the expiration date on the package.

Include sun protection in your skin care routine by using moisturizer, face makeup and lip products that include sunscreen.

Wear Sunglasses

The American Academy of Ophthalmology reported that overexposure to UV rays increases the risk for eye diseases, such as cataracts, as well as damage to the sensitive skin surrounding the eyes. Preventive measures include wearing UV blocking sunglasses whenever outside.

Put on Protective Clothing

Long-sleeved shirts and cover-ups can shelter your skin from the sun. Clothing is now being manufactured with built-in sun protection for shirts, pants, swimwear and hats. This type of clothing can be especially useful for children.

Grab a Hat

A wide-brimmed hat that covers your face, ears and the back of your neck is the most effective way to protect your face. Wearing a baseball cap helps, but it’s necessary to apply sunscreen to your neck and ears.

Stepping up skin care to include year-round sun protection is the smart way to avoid health issues down the line. Small changes in the products employees already use make it simple to accommodate changes without breaking the bank.

Mary Parsons is retired from a 30-year career in the insurance industry. She worked in the claims department of a major insurance carrier as a claims adjuster, manager and a member of a catastrophe team. Since her retirement, she has developed a career as a freelance writer. As an insurance professional, she has been a contributor to several insurance websites.