First published at Birchbox:
We love al fresco summer fun as much as the next girl (it’s so nice to get some Vitamin D!). But as much as we love frolicking outside, we also know it’s important to protect ourselves from the sun’s harmful rays.
For the latest information, we turned to one of the best-informed skincare experts around: Jill Scalisi, founder of Scalisi Skincare.
In 2008, Jill learned that a dry patch of itchy skin on her chest—which she initially thought was a form of eczema caused by a severe sunburn—was actually melanoma. After surgery and laser treatments, she survived her battle with skin cancer, but through her journey realized that there was a need for anti-aging skincare products with protective SPF. And thus she started her eponymous line.
Here are Jill’s top tips for staying protected, plus some must-know facts about skin cancer and UV damage:
- I apply sunscreen every day after the shower and before I get dressed—this makes sure I haven’t missed a spot and it won’t get on my clothes. I make sure to put it on any area that will be exposed to the sun.
- Reapplication is always tough, so I keep a mini bottle of SPF 30 in my makeup bag. Instead of touching up during the day, I use a towelette to wash my face and reapply my SPF 30 moisturizer and makeup. I also reapply it to areas that are exposed to the sun.
- I love the beach, but will always make sure sit under an umbrella.
- When I go swimming, I wear an SPF 30 rash shirt and a hat to protect my scalp.
- If I need to be at my children’s soccer or lacrosse tournaments for a couple of hours, I’ll bring a beach umbrella to sit under, too.
- When you’re looking at moles on your skin, watch out for the ABCDE’s of skin cancer: Asymmetrical moles; Borders on the mole that are uneven;Color—if there are suddenly multiple colors in one mole; Diameter—if it’s larger than 1/4-inch; Evolving—any change to the shape or color.
- You should do monthly self checks on your skin, and also schedule an annual checkup with a dermatologist.
- Did you know that 90% of wrinkles come from the sun? Since UVA rays go through glass (car windows, etc.), even if you’re not outside for extended periods of time, you should be using SPF 30 daily—this helps prevent wrinkles in the long run.
- Always look for sunscreens that use the words broad spectrum. This means the formula protects against both UVA and UVB rays.
Read more: The 3 Worst Reasons Not to Wear Sunscreen