We’re far more aware these days that sun exposure is bad for our skin. Pale Celtic skin is particularly vulnerable, and unfortunately for many of us the damage has already been done.

Cosmetic Doctor in Dublin is one of the country’s leading medical and aesthetic clinics, and provides a large range of non-surgical treatments and procedures to minimise the appearance of ageing, including sun damage.

Understanding Sun Damage

Skin and Sun Damage

Ultraviolet radiation (UV) from the sun is composed of three wavelengths – UVA, UVB and UVC.

UVA and UVB play different roles when it comes to tanning, burning, and photo aging.

About UVA Radiation

UVA is a long wavelength and accounts for up to 95 per cent of the sun’s UV radiation that reaches the earth. UVA rays penetrate deep into the skin.

Although less intense than UVB rays, they are present throughout the year, even in rainy Ireland.

Depending on the time of year, UVA rays can be 30 to 50 times more prevalent than UVB rays. UVA rays even penetrate glass and clouds and thus, we are constantly exposed to large doses of it; as we drive to work; sit by a window in an office, or are outside in overcast weather.

They damage the skin causing wrinkling, sagging and premature aging; also playing a role in skin cancer.

About UVB Radiation

UVB is in the middle range of the ultraviolet spectrum. It is responsible for burning, tanning, accelerating skin aging and also plays a key role in the development of skin cancer.

UVB tends to cause damage in more superficial skin layers and its intensity varies by season, location and time of day. The most significant amount of UVB hits between 10 am and 4 pm. UVB rays do not penetrate glass.

Overexposure to it causes tough, leathery pigmented skin and uneven texture, and is found in many Irish people who have exposed themselves to the sun without proper sun protection-usually in good weather where they are desperate to get a tan.

About UVC Radiation

UVC is completely absorbed by the ozone layer and does not affect the skin.

Planning a Winter Holiday to the Sun?

Sunscreen is the most valuable cosmetic product that one can use regularly to prevent early sun damage of the skin.

The sun produces both UVA and UVB radiations which can cause sun tan, sunburn on exposed areas. Even a single exposure can lead to painful, red sunburned skin, as Irish people know from experience!

Long term sun exposure can cause photo aging, wrinkles, freckles, age spots and a change in the texture of the skin.

A good sunscreen should be broad spectrum and protect against UVB and UVA; be waterproof; non-comedogenic (doesn’t clog your pores) and often re-applied.

Do I need Sunscreen in Ireland in the Winter?

A sunscreen should be used through the year and not only in summer months. It is a myth, that sun protection is not needed on a cloudy day; such a day will only have 20% less UV radiation.

Most foundations or moisturisers contain some element of SPF, as we are exposed to damaging rays all year.

To combat the effects of photogeing, pigmentation and wrinkles, call Cosmetic Doctor in Dublin on 01 685 3100.