E86 Top sun vacations tips from a pro to keep your skin healthy in the sun

UVB exposure is actually healthy. Shocker coming from a skin pro right? Coming back from a sun vacation myself, I’ve made a list of things that can help you take better care of your skin while away at your sunny destination, but also why you should expose yourself to the sun daily to help your health. From pre-care to post-care. It’s always a struggle when you go away because you want to make sure you’re still taking care of your skin, but you’re still on holidays so being efficient with your routine is important! What you’ll learn:

  • Benefits of UVB (yes, I said it!) 
  • Pre & Post Care
  • Physical vs Chemical SPF
  • Tips for protecting your face efficiently in the sun



Podcast transcript

Hello everyone. Welcome back to the podcast Emilie here as usual better known as the Meta Fairy and as per usual, this episode is brought to you by meta esthetics, Premier Ottawa skincare establishment since 1979, where we guide and educate our clients on how to age gracefully. Now I am back from Barbados and it was amazing. It was a really chill week in the Caribbean. It was such a good time. I’m, I’m very well rested. It was nice to feel the sun.

I don’t know if you guys are aware, but the sun is actually really good for you. I know we say all the time, especially as skin therapists that you know the sun is dangerous and it’s really bad for your skin. And the truth is the sun is actually really good for you. It’s actually a good trigger for your dopamine levels. So you know how in the wintertime we have a lot less light and a lot of people suffer from. I think it’s called seasonal depression because they’re not getting enough light. So a lot of people can get those red lights because they do trigger dopamine levels in your brain. And there’s some tricks you can follow. Like when you wake up you should expose yourself and your eyes to you should go outside. You should look at the sun and you should, you know expose yourself to the light as early as possible when you get up so that your dopamine levels are triggered. This is not you know, this is stuff that I’ve researched. I like to listen to the Huberman lab. He’s really really interesting. I’ll link it below if you guys are interested in knowing how light sunlight and types of light actually trigger really good things within your body.

Another another thing I can say is that when you’re when we’re in the summer everything grows much quicker right like our our skin, our skins dead skin cell cycle we have a lot more dead skin cell builds up. We are nails our hair, everything just grows much faster. Well it’s because the UVB actually has. It does influence those growth so it is good in a way now I mean you can go the other extreme and talk about skin cancer and all those things which is very accurate but just keep in mind that having sun exposure is not entirely all bad. You just have to you just have to be careful and you know you got to find that sweet spot so you don’t burn yourself off outside and enjoy the benefits of light. So I will link below this episode from the humor lab. It’s very, very interesting. He’s a neuroscientist so he’s, he’s quite interesting to listen to if you guys would like to learn about these types of things, but anyways, so sun exposure is actually really good for your dopamine levels. So make sure that you do go outside every day, or stand in your windows just to get those rays hitting your skin. But I think actually thinking about it, I think a lot of windows do have filters for the UVB anyways. So I don’t know if you would get the st benefit as going outside directly for a period of 10 minutes of the sun is shining.

But anyways, moving on. So had a great trip. It was really really fun. I wanted to talk about something that was in theme for me last week. And it was tips on how to protect your skin as much as possible when you’re going away in a sunny destination. So it’s not as easy as you would think. Because you know you’re you’re on holidays right so it’s very easy to let things just slip up.

But I will help you on the following things. So how to prep your skin for the South. There’s a few things that you should think about. You gotta stop using your actives, especially if you’re going like in the Caribbean or somewhere that’s really really sunny. Not talking about like necessarily Paris or London but really like Caribbean’s you’re going to be on the beach, you’re going to be hanging out in the ocean. You’re going to be in the sun all the time.

You’re going to want to be careful with your actives. So your retinol, your prescription Retinoids, put that stuff aside because it does make your skin a lot more sensitive to UV rays. And what happens is if you’re not diligent about putting on your sunscreen every two hours and wearing a hat, you’re you will probably have some hyperpigmentation that’s going to come to the surface. And you’re going to have other issues that you’re going to have to deal with when you come back home. So make sure that you stop using your retinol, your prescription retinoids and your acids as well. I mean, I’m doing like a very extreme thing here. I know some people are super careful in the sun and that’s fine. But generally speaking, you don’t want to use your intense glycolic acids your you know all these really strong actives when you’re in the south and a week before you leave because you want to make sure that you desensitize your skin to UV rays. What you’re gonna do while you’re there is you’re going to keep the hydration coming. It’s very, very important to keep that hydration level up. Because the sun, the ocean and all that jazz will dehydrate your skin so easily. You know when you get a sunburn and you start peeling, that’s you know, I mean, that’s because of the sunburn but because your skin is in need of water as well. So you want to make sure you keep that moisture replenished every single day. So make sure that you have hydration, a good serum that you can bring with you to just treat your skin at night, maybe not during the day because during the day you’re going to focus on protection and on sun protection. So at night you want to repair your skin, you want something that’s going to hydrate and calm your skin to repair everything that has been going on during the day on your skin. So you’re going to slack on your actives before you leave you’re not going to use them while you’re away. You’re going to focus focus on hydration.

Now while you’re there. I’ve done this I haven’t done this before. This is the first trip that I’ve done this I had a beautiful hat. And I’m not a hat person. Like I love caps. I’m a cap person. I can pull it off sporty look, you know I’ve got the head for it. But a hat like a nice little hat. I’ve never really liked the image of me with like a nice little hat. But I went to homesteads before we left I was shopping with my mom and I saw this really nice blue hat. And I was like, I’ll give it a try. Standing out from all the beige hats, right? And I put it on and it looks fabulous on my head. So I was like Okay, done. Do it. Bring it and you know what? I actually wore it for probably the best part of the holiday maybe the last few days. I was kind of swimming more but every time you went out for an outing during the day we were doing excursions and things like that. I was wearing my beautiful hat and I did not burn. Of course I was wearing powder. I was wearing sunscreen on my face. But when hat is one to help a lot your hairline. So you know as you get older you’ve got these random moles that are starting to come up around your hairline. It’s because most of the time we’re not really diligent enough to put on our Sun powder or sunscreen creams on the edge of our hairline and don’t forget that your head like the skin on your head is exposed all the time to the sun. And a lot of people sometimes do have moles that tend to pop up on their on their heads. And I’ve seen that before on clients, they had to remove a chunk of hair because they had a melanoma or something cancerous that was developing on their skull. So having a hat is really really important if you’ve never had a hat before when you went down south or even in the summer here. If you know it’s gonna be a really strong summer day you’re out and about wear hat are actually super fashionable. And they look pretty cute minute so wear a hat!

On my face I wear powder. I’m just for those of you who have the color science powder, I’m sorry, but it’s the best darn protection for your face. Unless you’re someone who likes to put on a cream in your face and I am not. I don’t like putting on cream in my face. Especially sunscreen. I do have a nice one in Guinot the SPF 30 It is lovely. But when I’m in the sun and I’m sweaty and I’m just like I wouldn’t about I don’t feel like putting on a cream in my face. I just put on a powder and it sticks to the skin and it works so in my face and hairline. I do the powder and the rest of my body I do cream.

Now. Two types of creams you can get you can have the chemical production and you can have the mineral protection. We have in color science they do have a body one it is a liquid. We have the powder for the face and we have the body one that is a cream. The only thing I don’t love about cream forms of mineral protection is that I just feel like it doesn’t go in as well as the chemical one and I know that’s the whole purpose of it. The minerals just stay on top of the skin. That’s the whole point they do work. They really do work they I feel like they work better than the chemical ones because the the chemical ones will absorb the UV rays and transform it into the heat type thing and throw it out there. So it absorbs the heat into your skin. Whereas the mineral one will completely filter it out and bounce it back out. So it doesn’t even penetrate. So it’s normal that the cream format is going to feel kind of not sticky, but you can feel it on your skin. It’s like well, it’s never going to go in. Well that’s the whole point of a mineral protection is that it’s going to stay on top. It doesn’t penetrate and it really bounces the UV rays back out there. So I’ve used both but I still prefer the chemical one for the body just because I don’t know. I just prefer it for my body. I don’t look white.

Yeah, I know it’s not the best people will generally speaking I think mineral is way better. But for the body, you know, I’ll put the mineral in my face, but I’ll keep the chemical for the body. Now, what happens if you get a sunburn? Well, you guys all know in the Caribbean. The the sunburns are really bad. And what you’re going to do is that you’re going to make sure that you bring a rash guard with you. So if you die if you guys don’t know what a rash guard is, you it’s like the surfing shirts, the sun protection shirts, I call them rash guards, but maybe there’s another word for them. But you can swim with them and it’ll protect your arms and your back. And that way if you already have a sunburn which happened to my you know, my husband put on sunscreen in my back and he didn’t do it really well. So my whole back was fine but I had stretches around where my my bathing suit if he didn’t go underneath he went around. So I had some wonderful red stripes in my back but the rest of my back was wonderful. Nothing. So that’s sunscreen works is just if you miss a spot it’s going to show right so anyways, I had a pretty bad streak in there on my back. So I was like I can’t go snorkeling and expose my back to the sun. So I had my rash guard so I put it on and it swims if you swim. Wow I can’t talk today. You swim really well with it and it protects you from the sun. So if you had a sunburn your shoulders you know your your upper back, even your chest you know it’s an easy spot to get a sunburn. Just put on a rash guard when you go swimming and then that way you’ll protect your skin even more and you’re not going to make your sunburn worse. So rash guard or a t shirt or like some kind of long sleeve shirt would do the job as well. Now the rest of the tips you know it’s usual stuff as if you would go in the south make sure you drink water because the sun will dehydrate you as well. The heat is very intense. So you want to make sure you keep the hydration those hydration levels super high. Super important. And you know just don’t lay in the sun without some protection. Because you will burn. You will burn our bodies are not made to absorb so much sunlight. I mean a little bit is good but you don’t want to burn yourself because that’s a whole other problem you’re going to have to deal with and if you do have a bad sunburn and make sure you get some aloe vera juice. The best would be in the leaves but I know the leaves in some countries or some hotels they don’t allow you to use it because it does stain the sheets it kind of leaves like a yellowish stain on the sheets. So if you do use it and make sure that you rinse it off before you go to bed so you’re not charged for ruining the sheets, but any type of like burning gel or aloe vera juice would be your best bet to repair the skin.

Once you’re back in your in your country where there’s less sun and less ocean because most of us don’t live in the Caribbean just make sure that you don’t use your retinols and your chemical acids right away because your skin does still fresh from from that weather. So you still have an active tan, even though you protected your skin. And I hope you did for your face. You want to make sure that you’re not putting on right away your prescription retinoids, your retinol, all that jazz is too strong right away. You might irritate your skin especially if you have a little red glow and that comes from that sun exposure. Just make sure you leave a week in between what you can do, you can use enzymes you can use a soft exfoliation if you have a little bit of because you will have some dead skin cell buildup because the sun does increase that cell buildup cycle.

It’s crazy how in the summer our skin just reproduces so faster, so much faster than them in winter. But same idea in the south so you can exfoliate you can use enzymes. Use some repairing mask hydration is really important or use your vitamin C. Vitamin C is great. That’s one active that you can bring with you because they will protect you from oxidative stress from the free radicals that the sun will give you.

So just make sure it’s not a vitamin C that will strip your skin because a lot of vitamin C’s I find are a little bit too harsh for most people and it strips the skin so make sure it’s a formula that works with your skin type. So hopefully this helped you a little bit to prepare if you’re going for a March break or if you’re going on holidays for quick little getaway in the South. Make sure that you bring your good stuff with you in trouble sizes and make sure that you have plenty of sunscreen with you whichever format you prefer to use. Just use it and reapply every two hours. That is the main trick on how to use properly an SPF is to reapply every two hours. If you only put it on in the morning after two hours you’re done. You’re no longer protected unless you’re wearing you know like clothes on your body that will protect you from the race but you want to make sure that you reapply every two hours. All right, so on this note, I will let you go and we will chat very soon on the next episode. And don’t forget guys take a chill Stop. Stop stressing. That’s one thing I realized while I was away it’s kinda nice to see how the way that they live over there. It’s just so chill. You know they’re not stressed they’re they’re just relaxed and it kind of rubs on you right
like that chill vibe. So I think it’s kind of nice that they live that way and we should probably take a little bit of them and not stress ourselves out all the time because our culture sometimes is a little bit not super healthy, you know? So all right, I will leave you and we will chat on the next episode. Bye guys!