With school ending and the summer solstice quickly approaching, the sun rays are secretly getting stronger. With the sun beating down, ultraviolet (UV) rays make their way into your skin without keeping your skin properly protected. UV rays are the #1 cause of skin cancer in the world. Thanks to the sun, we absorb plenty of UV rays over the course of our lifetime, whether through tanning beds or laying in the sun. In under 20 minutes of being in the sun, your skin can already become damaged. With enough exposure, UV rays can cause sunburns, eye damage, age spots, and premature wrinkles. To protect your skin and eyes, always be sure to wear sunscreen above 30 SPF and sunglasses with 100% UV protection. Try to avoid being in the sun without sunscreen or a thin layer of clothes between 10am and 3pm, because UV rays are the strongest then. Using an umbrella at the beach or in public and staying under a shaded area can help shield the sun from going into your healthy skin.
In the unfortunate case that you get a sunburn, take a cool shower (but not cold!), apply pure aloe vera gel on the affected area, take an anti-inflammatory (ibuprofen or Advil) if you’re in a ton of pain, and continuously apply cold compresses on the sunburnt areas. Aloe vera gel starts at around $4 at most drugstores. Hopefully, these helpful tips will help keep your sun safe this season. Stay safe!