How To Automate Skin Protection
Do you automate skin protection for yourself or your family? Or do you think that vacation time is the only time for being aware of how to protect your skin?
Mathematician and philosopher Alfred North Whitehead on progress:
“Civilization advances by extending the number of important operations which we can perform without thinking about them.”
Source: An Introduction to Mathematics
Math and protecting your skin from the sun may not seem like related subjects, I will agree that you have a point. But to clear the idea up a bit, think about the way we learn math.
The way we learn math is a good example of how good habits can carry you through any project, start to finish.
If you decide to short cut some of the basic stuff, you will find that you are shorting the whole project. With lifestyles changing so quickly, getting into a habit of protecting your skin will benefit you for years.
Build good basic habits at each stage of the protection from the sun cycle. Establish the basics as good habits and not have skin cancer in your life.
An example that comes to mind is the habit of applying sunscreen every morning. During the times in my life I am walking regularly in the mornings, the sunscreen is easy to remember.
When I am using some excuse or the other to not walk, the sun screen is forgotten to often as well. This is an automatic habit for me some days, I don’t even haveto think about it.
What automatic habits are yours?
Looking Backward At Sun Protection
Just think about it, how much more this generation lives in the sun. How our lives have evolved. For me, I came from an agriculture-based background. We had lots of direct sunlight hours each day.
Yes, I helped with what chores and farm work that I could help with. We protected our skin for a long day helping on the farm by covering from head to toe to protect our skin from the sun. Brimmed hats and long sleeves.
However, there were not that many all day projects. Usually, I could help an hour or so at different times. We could help most by taking care of the chickens, gather eggs. We got in on the hog care and milking the cows when Dad couldn’t get to it.
House work was usually my assignment. I was the oldest, and a girl. To my Dad there were girl chores, and boy chores. Mom worked at the telephone office- yes, back in the day when you picked up the phone and an operator asked what number you wanted!
Hanging a weeks worth of laundry on the clothes line was time consuming, and naturally the lines were in the direst sun. Unfortunatly I didn’t grab a sun bonnet as Mom did on sunny days. She didn’t either when it was overcast or cloudy.
There was not a washer and dryer at our house, we went to the laundry in town on Mondays. I learned to do a reasonabley passable job of laundry. These were chores I helped with when I could, or completed by my self in the summertime.
Sunscreen An Unknown Product
Actually when I was young, we didn’t know about sunsceen. We knew very little about “sun tanning lotion.”
The early products were not designed to screen out the sun. They were to make your skin look moist and conditioned while you were cooking it in the direct sunlight.
We didn’t have Twitter and Instagraham to aleart us about what was new and important right this minute. The idea of Automate Skin Care would not have entered our minds back when I was busy spending too much time in the sun. So many new products to select from now.
It is very difficult to find any products claiming to be suntan lotions now days. The layer of lotion we put on our skin that was called “sun tan lotion” offered only the protection of the lotion on our skin. The lotion might offer a 3 SPF layer of protection for 20 mintes.
Sunless tanning lotions now have the name Suntanning Lotions.
We got as much protection from the Jergins hand lotion that our family always used as from a speciality product with the lable sun tan lotion. However, we didn’t know that.
Think about it like this:
A layer of something, beats nothing! Your old worn out white tee shirt offers some protection, not very much however. Always, a layer of something is better than nothing.
Do I Need Sun Blocking Clothing or Sunscreen
With the lotions that were first available whose formulas would break down in the direct sun very quickly, there was little to no protection for our skin. This is why we need sun blocking clothing.
The chemicals to keep todays sunscreen formula stable so the product will provide skin protection has challenges too.
It has to last on the stores shelf long enough to sell it to you. The additive that has nothing to do with prtocting your skin, is what has caused the uproar about cancer causing chemicals in our sunscreens. Manufacturers are just trying to get a product to you that works.
Yes you need to use sunscreen. We all do. Keeping our skin safe is easier to do now that good products are availabl. Regular clothing is better than nothing for protecting your skin from the sun.
When I was young, awareness of skin protection was just happening. Our first bottle of “suntan lotion” was baby oil with idione in it to stain our skin! We rubbed baby oil on our exposed areas and laid out in the sun or rode bikes trying to look cool and get tans.
Not very successful attempts either. I got lots of freckles! That isn’t what I wanted.
A product that is considered to be a suntan lotion is usually a sunscreen with an SPF of less than 15. These “tanning” sunscreens, which typically have an SPF 4 to SPF 8, do not provide enough sun protection, especially for kids. You will be starting to sunburn in just minutes.
We were not so good about sunscreen, even after we began to have choices in the marketplace. but in our minds, sun-screen was special. You save it to use when you go around water! Sunscreen only worked for fun time activities.
We didn’t think about using it for work events. Those times we were out in the sun for hours. That is what the ads advertised. Sunscreens were only appropriate for playtime.
Is Sunscreen Really That Important?
We never considered applying sunscreen before going to the field to help with the irrigation water. Or when moving equipment about. We had only our bottles of baby oil and idione!
The advertising agencies missed many oppurtunities for sales by not showing that bottle of Coppertone in use by farmers driving tractors. Or any of the chores that flow so naturally through the working day. We grabbed a long sleeve shirt, a hat, gloves.
Does the message to consider protecting your skin from the sun when you are doing fun stuff make you aware? Is grabbing a sun blocking shirt, sun hat and sunglasses a part of your routine yet?
Do you really know how important sunscreen is? Yes, for fun times this is important, but many of us have more hours of daily activities that should include protection. The daily stuff is where most people fall short in protecting their skin for the UV Rays.
Do you apply sunscreen when going out to the garden? You need sunscreen, and a hat as well as a long-sleeved shirt for all activities that take place in the sun between 10 AM and 4 PM. Even in the fall and winter.
When you are driving your vehicle. Any long time in the sun, direct or indirect. You need to automate your skin protection. Grab the sunscreen before grabbing your carkeys.
When I was young, we had already begun to change the way we dressed as young people. We wore shorter shorts and were involved in many more sports than our parents.
Many more practice hours outside for softball and tennis. We liked to swim more, and our bathing suits were covering less than generations before us. All while we are younger.
We seldom worried about skin protection. No one knew that this was important.
When you are adding up all the times you have been exposed to the direct sun’s rays you will find that each generation is experiencing more and more time in the sun.
For my kids, one constant was the lack of protection from the sun. I didn’t warn them about sun exposure. I didn’t realize my self.
They weren’t getting out to help with farm chores, but they were out playing a number of hours a day in direct sun’s rays. We lived in eastern NM, and there was little water to be around beyond what came through the garden hose. Their mom didn’t do her part in early skin protection from the sun.
There were more places where it was socially acceptable to wear casual clothing. Casual clothing seldom brought to mind sunscreens and wide-brimmed hats. Shorts and tank tops were accepted. Our clothing is reflecting our lifestyles, and the changes we are seeing. Why We Develop Skin Cancer
Good Habits: Automate Skin Protection
A helpful guide I saw some time ago stated that when the sun is too bright for your eyes, and you reach for your sunglasses, stop. Realize that you should also reach for your hat and longsleeved shirt. Gtouping the 3 things together would be a way to automate sun protection for your skin.
For the situation that prompted the need for sunshades, adding sunscreen along with the hat and long sleeves would be a really good move. Like most good habits, starting in slowly should help. We see ourselves being successful with small changes. Often the small changes seem like no move at all.
One of the small changes I have made is putting my sunglasses in the shirt pocket of the shirt I wear outside. At the present, I am searching for a hook to put on the inside of the storage closet door near the back door. I could leave the shirt and sunglasses on the hook with the hat. This would help me not forget one of the items.
Think about ways you might automate your routine for better skin protection for yourself and your family. How could you automate skin protection?
Hopefully, we can soon eliminate the excuse of “I didn’t know.” Awareness of some common sense practices for skin protection will lead the way. Future generations should be able to enjoy being out in the sun, but not have to deal with skin cancers for the next 50 years.
We can learn to protect our skin with sun blocking clothing and sunscreens. Payi attention to your outside time to help with avoiding direct sunlight.
There will be a change. More people will become aware of the importance of this skin that is covering our bodies.
I hope to help in making people more aware.
Sami’s Take On Automate Skin Protection
When I first began to think about protecting my skin, I had no idea hard it would be to automate skin protection. It seemed like a good plan, and if I could start small, surely someday I would be doing a better job of skin protection.
I can say I an acutely aware if being careless. Do I always go back and get my sun blocking shirt, hat, and shade? Not everytime, but most times. The samecan be said about sunscreen use. I am better. Not perfect, but better.
Automatic is becoming a reality. Finding ways to keep sun blocking clothing handy sometimes means wearing a shirt that has wrinkles from being folded in a tote in the car, but I have it on.
As the late summer and early fall is here, I will work with statying aware of the sun during the colder months. That is when we can get those UVA rays that age us quickly. There is a lot to learn.
Being a bit over reaching in protection will allow me to share with my family easier. They will have a chance to call attention to how unneccessary sun protection is in the winter, and I can explain why it is improtant. Hopefully we can all become more automatic with our skin protection routines.
How can you do a better job of protecting your skin?