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Updated 19 December 2016

Who needs to wear sunscreen?

IN PARTNERSHIP: A big misconception is that people with dark skin don't need sunscreen.

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It’s true that the more melanin (the dark pigment that give skin its colour) skin has, the more it’s naturally protected from damage by the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays. On average, medium-dark skin provides an SPF of about 13 and filters twice as much UV radiation as fair skin. However, your skin tone will not protect your skin from free radicals, which can lead to the disruption of DNA, resulting in cancer and pigmentation.

Protect your skin

Skin cancer is less prevalent among people of colour, accounting for about 1 to 2 percent of all cancer cases in African-Americans, and about 2 to 4 percent in Asians. In cases where cancer does occur, it occurs in areas that are not normally exposed to the sun, for example soles of the feet, palms of the hands and eyes.

All photo types (skin tones) need to wear a sunscreen. Any darkening of your normal skin tone is evidence that your skin is protecting itself from UV rays and further damage. UV rays (A and B) can cause cancer, photo ageing and pigmentation in everyone, irrespective of their skin tone, when exposed to the sun.

According to studies, darker skins are less susceptible to non-melanoma skin cancer (for example, basal and squamous cell carcinomas), however, when detected it is likely to be at an advanced stage and more difficult to treat.

Sun capital
We are all born with “sun capital”, a natural UV protection. However, with each exposure to the sun without sunscreen, some of our “sun capital” is depleted. Most people have lost half their “capital” by the age of 20, irrespective of skin tone or ethnicity.

Our common goal should be to protect all children, no matter what their ethnicity, from sun exposure without a sunscreen to ensure their “sun capital” does not become depleted.

Eau Thermale Avène offers a complete range of sun care products which cater to different skin types, including a formula specifically suited to acne-prone skin.  

sunblock, skincare, sun, healthy, health

Avène SPF 30 Cleanance

  • High sun protection for acne-prone skin on the face with a mattifying effect
  • Broad-spectrum UVA-UVB protection
  • Water-resistant
  • Dry-feel
  • No white marks 
  • Photosable
  • Silicone-free
  • Paraben-free



 
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