The Secret: Yes, your skin ages (eventually) Darker skin tones have some built-in sun protection. The melanin in darker skinned Hispanic and black women creates SPF of about 13.4 (compared to 3.4 in white skin), but that doesn't mean you should skip sunscreen. Black and Hispanic women show the effects of photoaging about 15-20 years later than Caucasian women. Fine lines and wrinkles tend to be less prominent in dark skin than in white or lighter Hispanic skin, but in your 50s and 60s, hyperpigmentation and uneven skin tone take center stage, making other effects, like sagging skin, more noticeable. If you want to lower your risk of skin cancer and look good while doing it, it's time to incorporate SPF into your everyday routine.
The Solution: Slather it on
Reintgen and Shapiro advise using a broad spectrum (UVA/UVB) sunscreen with an SPF 15 or greater every day. Apply sunscreen to your entire body 30 minutes before going outside for chemical sunscreens and reapply every two hours or immediately after swimming or excessive sweating. For immediate protection, try a physical sunscreen that blocks the sun (instead of absorbing and reflecting) that contains zinc oxide or titanium dioxide.
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