We plan for the future in all sorts of ways: We pick the best school to attend to help us reach our career goals; we select a partner to build the family we want; we invest in our financial well-being and long-term stability.
Yet, so few of us plan for our health and, more specifically, our skin.
Hugh Jackman made headlines last year when he publicly battled skin cancer. Three surgeries later, he’s doing well and making it his mission to raise awareness about the dangers of sun exposure.
There’s no question SPF is sexy, and not just because Wolverine endorses it.
Makeup companies and skincare lines are implementing the UV deterrent into every product possible because there’s no such thing as too much sun protection.
Many people hesitate to wear sunscreen. They think their tan will suffer as a result, or there’s no need for it if they’re not at the beach.
All of these people are doing their future selves a grave injustice. Implementing sunscreen into your daily routine is the easiest and best gift you can give to your older self.
Here are just a few of the reasons why:
1. You can prevent skin cancer.
According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, melanoma is the most common form of cancer for young adults 25 to 29 years old and the second most common form of cancer for young people 15 to 29 years old.
It’s also the single most preventable form of cancer there is. Indeed, the risk of getting melanoma doubles after five sunburns. This means your days of working out in the yard and getting a farmer’s tan need to be a thing of the past.
No one under 30 wants to hear the word “cancer,” or face the grueling treatment that comes after.
The Skin Cancer Foundation states that regular, daily use of SPF 15 or greater sunscreen can decrease your risk of melanoma by up to 50 percent.
It’s time to get on board the sunscreen train.
2. You can slow down the aging process.
Sun exposure is the biggest environmental contributor to wrinkles, dark spots, freckles and hyperpigmentation.
Remember the grandmother from “There’s Something About Mary?” While, admittedly, an extreme example, it’s an example that prolonged sun exposure can cause your skin to become tough and leather-like.
There’s also a general loss of elasticity and potential for bruising and tearing of the skin after years in the sun.
It’s been scientifically proven that wearing sunscreen can not only prevent aging, but also reduce the signs 0f aging.
Using sunscreen daily will keep your skin glowing and healthy for years to come, something your future self will be very thankful for.
3. You can enjoy the outdoors without worry.
The problem with UV rays is they’re not blocked by clouds or clothing.
It is still possible to have harmful exposure, even if you’re not directly in the sunlight or get sunburned. Everyday activities, such as walking or biking, can be a cause for concern.
If you’re incorporating sunscreen into all your daily products, you’ll be able to enjoy the great outdoors worry-free.
4. You can set a good example for others.
Once upon a time, smoking cigarettes used to be cool, until someone pointed out how deadly they are. Similarly, the days of tanning beds and oils are behind us because we now know better.
By protecting your skin and being the person in your family who reapplies sunscreen religiously every 30 minutes, you can start new and healthy habits for your loved ones, ensuring you all get to bask in the sunshine for years to come.