The Memorial Day Holiday is the unofficial kick off to summer
but those tempted to start by getting a "base tan" should be aware
that there is no such thing as a safe, healthy or protective tan.
The misconception that a base tan will protect the skin is
dangerous; even for those who never burn, prolonged exposure to
ultraviolet (UV) radiation can lead to skin aging (including
wrinkles, lines and age spots) as well as skin cancer. In fact,
about 65 percent of melanomas and 90 percent of nonmelanoma skin
cancers are associated with sun exposure.
"Whether obtained by lying out in the sun or using a tanning bed, a
tan damages your skin," says Perry Robins, MD, President of The
Skin Cancer Foundation. "A tan is the body's response to damaged
DNA in the skin cells - the skin darkens in order to prevent more
damage but the person's risk of skin cancer is already
Since sunburns are also associated with higher risks of skin
cancer, especially melanoma (the most dangerous form of skin
cancer), it's important to avoid both tans and sunburns. This
summer and all year long, The Skin Cancer Foundation recommends the
following skin cancer prevention strategies:
Seek the shade, especially between 10 am and 4 pm.
Do not allow your skin to burn.
Avoid tanning and UV tanning booths.
Cover up with clothing, including a broad-brimmed hat and
Use a broad spectrum (UVA/UVB) sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or
higher every day. For extended outdoor activity, use a
water-resistant, broad spectrum (UVA/UVB) sunscreen with an SPF of
30 or higher.
Apply 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) of sunscreen to your entire body 30
minutes before going outside. Reapply every two hours or
immediately after swimming or excessive sweating.
Keep newborns out of the sun. Sunscreens should be used on babies
over the age of six months.
Examine your skin head-to-toe every month.
See your doctor every year for a professional skin exam.
Be prepared for the sun this summer. Stop by Fiesta and pick up the
sunscreen that works best for your family's planned outdoor
activities. We have protection for children, adults,
water-resistant and UVA/UVB sun defense from SPF 15 to SPF 30.