What is ultraviolet radiation?
UV radiation is part of the electromagnetic light spectrum that reaches the earth from the sun. It has wavelengths shorter than visible light, making it invisible to the naked eye (2). These wavelengths are classified as UVA, UVB, or UVC.
What is the difference between UV-A & UV-B & UV-C Radiation? According to Library of Congress Research Center (1):
- UV-A: This is the longest wavelength and is not absorbed by the ozone. It penetrates the skin deeper than UV-B and is a known cause of photoaging or wrinkling of the skin (2). UVA is the dominant tanning ray; whether outdoors or in a salon, it causes cumulative damage over time and can penetrates glass (2). A tan results from injury to the skin’s DNA; the skin darkens in an imperfect attempt to prevent further DNA damage (2).
- UV-B: The cause of skin reddening and sunburn, UV-B tends to damage the skin’s more superficial epidermal layers (2). It is only partially blocked by the ozone layer. Please note: UV-B rays can burn and damage your 365 days a year, especially at high altitudes and on reflective surfaces such as snow or ice, which bounce back up to 80 percent of the rays so that they hit the skin twice (2).
- UV-C: This is totally absorbed by the earth’s atmosphere; we encounter it only from artificial radiation sources.
- Both UV-A and UV-B penetrate the atmosphere and premature skin aging, eye damage (including cataracts), and skin cancers (2).
How do I protect myself from UV-A & UV-B Radiation?
Wear sun screen every day, even if you do not expect to be outdoors. We can still suffer the effects of sun damage while driving in the car. The higher the SPF the more protection the sunscreen will provide against UV-B rays. SPF does not measure UV-A (1). If you are looking for UV-A protection, chose a broad-spectrum product that states it provides both UV-A & UV-B protection.
What is the difference between a physical and chemical protectant?
Most UV products are chemical meaning that hey form a thin, protective film on the surface of the skin and absorb the UV radiation before it penetrates the skin. The physical sunscreens are insoluble particles that reflect UV away from the skin (2). Ladies, start reading the ingredients on your makeup. Don’t be fooled by statements that claim the product has sun block. Do your homework and make sure you have both UV-A & UV-B protection. If your favorite makeup doesn’t have both UV-A & UV-B then make the last step of skin care prior to foundation a sunblock with both UV-A & UV-B.
|Active Ingredient/UV Filter Name||Range Covered|
|UVA1: 340-400 nm|
|UVA2: 320-340 nm|
|UVB: 290-320 nm|
|Aminobenzoic acid (PABA)||UVB|
|Ecamsule (Mexoryl SX)||UVA2|
|Ensulizole (Phenylbenzimiazole Sulfonic Acid)||UVB|
|Meradimate (Menthyl Anthranilate)||UVA2|
|Octinoxate (Octyl Methoxycinnamate)||UVB|
|Octisalate ( Octyl Salicylate)||UVB|
|Titanium Dioxide||UVB, UVA2|
|Zinc Oxide||UVB,UVA2, UVA1|
Where do I find a reliable sun block?
Transcend Beauty & Wellness carries several outstanding sun blocks! Sun Shield TINT Broad Spectrum SPF 50, Obagi Sun Shield Mineral Broad Spectrum SPF 50, Obagi Sun Shield Matte Broad Spectrum SPF 50, HydraFactor® Broad Spectrum SPF 30, Obagi Nu-Derm® Healthy Skin Protection Broad Spectrum SPF 35, Obagi Nu-Derm® Physical SPF 32, Professional-C™ Suncare Broad Spectrum SPF 30. All sun blocks 30% off through July 1st!
For more information on how sun blocks work please: Click Here
- What if I already sun spots & signs of sun damage? You can treat the signs of photodamage with products that contain 4% hydroquinone.The Obagi-C Rx System offers 4% hydroquinone to reduce hyperpigmentation, damage, and age spots, uneven skin tone, rough skin, & the appearance fine lines and wrinkles. Check out the before and after photos: Click Here
1.How does sunscreen work? Library of Congress Web site.
2. Understanding UVA and UVB. Skin Cancer Foundation Web site.