Sun exposure, for both fair and dark skin types, brings our body many benefits. "To maximize these benefits, while minimizing the downsides cause by UVA/UVB rays, it is mandatory to use protective factors adequate to our phototype, which is the reactivity of our skin to light hence the ability of tanning.
Sun exposure has some undeniable benefits on our body. It favors Vitamin D synthesis, essential for the health of tissues, bones and strengthening of the immune system and promotes the production of endorphins, "feel-good" hormones that positively impact our mood. Despite these benefits, it is important to remember that the skin is put to test during the summer months due to intensive sun exposure, often without a proper protection. The result is inflammation, which triggers inflammation, acceleration of skin ageing, appearance of wrinkles and dark spots and increased risk of possible neoplasms – today, unfortunately, constantly growing.
"Exposure to the sun, especially in case of phototype 1 or 2, can lead to both acute and chronic damage on our skin" explains Dr. Maria Bucci, Nutridermatologist. "We talk about acute damage in case of reddened skin, characterized by a visible localized erythema on the sun-exposed areas: it is a damage caused by UVB rays that trigger inflammation, directly damaging the DNA of epidermal cells. These cells, equipped with protective machanisms, block the multiplication of cells with damaged DNA and can even induce their death in case of significant damage. However, with prolonged sun exposure, UVA rays interact with damaged cells favoring the release of free radicals in the body, indirectly creating a new damage".
For chronic damage, we refer to a "damage prolonged in time and caused by UVA rays. In fact, these rays – altough less powerful than UVBs, are able to deeply penetrate the skin, reaching the dermis and triggering the process of photoaging – or cutaneous ageing -, immunosuppression and photo-carcinogenesis. Photoaging itself represent the most evident consequence of chronic sun exposure."