By Dr Yazan Ajam PhD – Santi London
As we eagerly anticipate the arrival of summer, it becomes crucial to adopt proper sun exposure management in order to minimise potential damage to our skin. In ancient mythology, Helios was revered as the embodiment of the sun, possessing life-giving powers. Summer presents an opportunity for achieving a radiant complexion, but striking the right balance is key. This entails practicing mindful sun exposure, implementing effective sun protection during prolonged periods outdoors, adopting an optimal skincare routine, and nourishing the body with the right nutrition.
What is hyperpigmentation?
Hyperpigmentation refers to patches or areas of the skin that become darker than the surrounding skin, this is caused by an overproduction of melanin – the pigment responsible for our skin colour. It is normally triggered by sun exposure but can also occur due to pregnancy, an injury or a change in hormones. It affects all types of skin and people of all ages.
How to prevent hyperpigmentation
Protect your skin from the sun
The foremost step towards safeguarding your skin is to limit your time in the sun, opting for less intense hours such as mornings and evenings when UV radiation is less potent. Sun protection measures are particularly crucial during these periods to shield the skin from harmful rays.
Support your skin with nourishing ingredients
In terms of nutrition, certain dietary choices have been found to mitigate the detrimental effects of sun exposure. Diets rich in carrots and tomatoes, for instance, have demonstrated the ability to reduce sun-induced damage.
Supplementing with glutathione can also play a significant role in enhancing skin health and improving the function of the skin’s natural barrier. By reducing melanocytes, the cells responsible for pigmentation, glutathione aids in achieving a more even complexion.
Hyperpigmentation skincare routine
For a simple and effective skincare routine, consider the following steps:
- Begin by cleansing your face with a gentle micellar water, which effectively removes impurities without stripping the skin of its natural moisture.
- Follow this with the application of a lightweight moisturiser to hydrate and nourish the skin. When selecting skincare products, it is advisable to avoid active ingredients such as retinol, particularly during periods of increased sun exposure. Individuals dealing with specific skin concerns can opt for the Vichy Liftactiv line as a starting point, gradually transitioning to products containing kojic or azelaic acids during the autumn months.
- Lastly, for reliable sun protection, Heliocare’s AirGel is an excellent choice, offering a foam-like consistency that applies smoothly.
By adopting these guidelines and tailoring them to suit individual needs, you can maintain the health and vitality of your skin throughout the summer while mitigating potential sun damage. Remember, finding the right balance between sun exposure, protection, skincare, and nutrition is essential for achieving and preserving a vibrant and glowing complexion.