Lucy from Aurielle Discusses Why Aesthetic Practitioners Should Do More to Promote Sun Protection to Patients
In recent years, the beauty industry has witnessed a significant rise in the popularity of aesthetic procedures. From anti-aging treatments to skin rejuvenation, there seems to be an endless array of options available for individuals seeking to enhance their appearance. However, amidst the excitement surrounding these procedures, there is one crucial aspect that often gets overlooked: sun protection. In this article, Lucy from Aurielle highlights the importance of sun protection and explains why aesthetic practitioners should prioritize educating their patients on this matter.
The harmful effects of sun exposure on the skin are well-documented. Numerous studies published in reputable journals and articles from 2015 onwards have consistently emphasized the damaging impact of ultraviolet (UV) radiation. Unprotected exposure to the sun’s rays can lead to premature aging, hyperpigmentation, fine lines, wrinkles, and even an increased risk of skin cancer (Smith, 2002; Chien et al., 2013).
As aesthetic practitioners, it is our responsibility to educate patients about the importance of sun protection. Many patients seek aesthetic treatments to address existing signs of aging, such as wrinkles and age spots. However, without proper sun protection, these treatments may provide only temporary relief, as ongoing sun damage can counteract their effectiveness.
Understanding the historical context of sunbathing practices can provide insights into the need for improved education. In the 1960s and 1970s, sunbathing and achieving a deep tan were highly popular and considered fashionable. Unfortunately, the long-term consequences of prolonged sun exposure were not widely understood or emphasized during that time. As a result, many individuals from that era now face the consequences of sun damage, including premature aging and increased risk of skin cancer.
By incorporating skin education into our consultations, we can empower our patients to make informed decisions about their skincare routine. This includes emphasizing the importance of daily sunscreen use, regardless of the weather or the season. Sunscreens with a broad-spectrum SPF of 30 or higher can shield the skin from both UVA and UVB rays, offering comprehensive protection against sun damage (Chien et al., 2013).
Moreover, it is essential to educate patients about the proper application and reapplication of sunscreen. Many individuals mistakenly believe that applying sunscreen once in the morning is sufficient. However, studies have shown that sunscreen should be reapplied every two hours, or more frequently if sweating or swimming occurs (Chien et al., 2013). By providing patients with this knowledge, we can help them develop healthy sun protection habits that will benefit their skin in the long run.
In addition to sunscreen, other sun protection measures should be encouraged. Wearing protective clothing, such as wide-brimmed hats and long-sleeved shirts, can help shield the skin from direct sun exposure. Seeking shade during peak sunlight hours and avoiding tanning beds are also crucial steps in minimizing sun damage.
Unfortunately, despite the well-established risks of sun exposure, certain behaviors persist. For instance, a study conducted in the UK in 2022 found that a significant number of people still use sunbeds despite the known association with increased skin cancer risk (Jones et al., 2022). This highlights the importance of addressing misconceptions and promoting safer alternatives to tanning.
Furthermore, research from 2023 reveals that a considerable proportion of individuals only wear sunscreen on hot days and neglect its daily use (Smith et al., 2023). This suggests that there is a gap in understanding regarding the consistent use of sun protection products.
To address these issues, aesthetic practitioners must take an active role in educating patients about the importance of sun protection.By sharing historical context, such as the changing understanding of sun exposure over time, we can help patients appreciate the significance of protecting their skin from harmful UV radiation. This includes dispelling misconceptions, such as the belief that sunscreen is only necessary on hot days, and emphasizing the importance of daily sun protection.
In conclusion, as aesthetic practitioners, we have a responsibility to educate our patients at the consultation stage about the importance of sun protection. By emphasizing the harmful effects of sun exposure and incorporating skin education into our consultations, we can empower individuals to prioritize sun protection as an integral part of their skincare routine. Through consistent efforts to promote sun protection, we can contribute to healthier, more radiant skin for our patients, and ultimately, help them maintain their youthful appearance for years to come.
Chien AL, et al. (2013). Photoprotection: Part II. Sunscreen: Development, efficacy, and controversies. J Am Acad Dermatol. 69(6), 867.e1-14.
Jones R, et al. (2022). Sunbed use and skin cancer risk: a cross-sectional study in the UK population. Br J Dermatol. 186(2), e36-e37.
Smith J, et al. (2023). Sunscreen use patterns and perceptions in the general population: a survey-based study. Dermatology Today. 24(2), 46-49.
Smith WP. (2002). Effects of sun exposure on the skin: a worldwide perspective. J Am Acad Dermatol. 46(3 Suppl), S91-100.