what to know about uv rays
What is “sun capital”?
Contrary to popular belief, we don’t have unlimited reserves of “sun capital” – it’s quite the opposite, in fact. Over our lifetime, our skin continues to accumulate bad radiation until it reaches a point where it can’t absorb these rays anymore and their effects become visible, firstly in the form of brown spots, premature wrinkles or fine lines. When these external signs appear, it tells us that there is real damage deep down.
Do we all react to UV rays in the same way?
Unfortunately not. We are born with different phototypes, which have different levels of tolerance to sun exposure. Those with dark, mixed-race or olive skin have a higher proportion of dark melanin, which gives them greater protection from UV rays but does not mean that they do not need to use sun protection.
Does sunburn always mean that the skin has been damaged?
Yes. Sunburn is the result of an overdose of sun on the skin. The immediate effect is that the skin heats up and starts peeling, but the impact deep down is much more serious. The cells are no longer able to repair themselves properly, leading to irreversible damage.
Can some foods help me get a tan?
Absolutely. Some nutritional supplements help prepare your skin before and during sun exposure. Benjamin Bauquin advises “simply consuming antioxidant carotenoids, known to stimulate melanin production and therefore tanning, every day for two weeks before going out in the sun.