Summer months typically turn Toronto residents’ heads to thoughts of more time spent in the sun, which is great for anyone longing for relief from cold, wet winters, but is not so great for your skin. As we recently explored in this blog, collagen, hyaluronic acid, and elastin are vital components of healthy, youthful-looking skin that break down naturally over time and gradually diminish. This destruction is hastened by ultraviolet light exposure.
It is true that UV rays from the sun are constant, not stopping for clouds on overcast days. That said, people tend to expose more skin when the sun is out, so the warmer seasons tend to invite more opportunities for damage in the form of early development of lines and wrinkles, volume loss, and more. Toronto plastic surgeon Dr. Wayne Carman often sees—and corrects—these signs of premature aging due in part to unchecked sun exposure, which is why he offers these tips to consider while enjoying summertime activities.
Wear sunscreen. A barrier sunscreen with a significant SPF (sun protection factor) makes a good line of defense against harmful rays. Apply it about 15 minutes prior to going outside, then again every two hours. It should also be applied any time you think it may have washed off due to a dip in the pool, a swim in the lake, or even excessive sweating. Do not forget your scalp, the tops of your ears, and the tops of your feet!
Dress for the occasion. Shorts, T-shirts, and swimwear make up a standard summer wardrobe, but consider covering up when possible to provide even more protection against the sun. Enjoy the shade of a sun hat, wear loose long sleeves when on a walk, or simply spend time under an all-encompassing umbrella.
Stay hydrated. Well-moisturized skin is youthful-looking skin, but that hydration does not come from doing cannonballs into the deep end. Drink plenty of water, especially if you are sweating.
Get plenty of sleep. Longer days, shorter nights, and a “school’s out” vibe can all contribute to a desire to put off sleep—even for men and women whose summer vacation days are long past. Avoid the temptation to live like a night owl, since your body works to repair the damages of the day while you are sleeping. Lack of sleep can contribute to a range of cosmetic problems, including dark circles under your eyes.
Avoid smoking. This is true for all seasons. Smoking constricts blood vessels and has other negative effects that can contribute to early signs of aging, as well as hinder proper healing after cosmetic surgery.
Contact Cosmetic Surgeon Dr. Wayne Carman at the Cosmetic Surgery Institute in Toronto by calling (416) 322-7108 or 1-888-451-1140, or send a message online.Written by Wayne Carman
Dr. Carman is a Toronto Plastic Surgeon practicing breast, body and facial cosmetic surgery.