Unlock your style in 14 days: Always wear sunscreen

Are you ready for the final five days at the Unlock Your Style holiday camp?

Yes, that’s right. By the weekend you’ll have all the tools you need to really think each day about how you can make fashion and beauty choices that help you feel good.

I can’t tell you how much it means to me to have so many of you leave beautiful messages and emails telling me how this series has really helped you.

I know we’re not changing the world but if just a little bit of thought as to what you wear can lift your mood, then I’m all for the individual and collective result of that happening.

… let’s get on with today’s lesson, shall we?

It’s beauty related again and for me this is particularly a big one.

Unlock your style | Always wear sunscreen

Our skin can give away so many secrets. And yes, we can employ some makeup tricks and shortcuts to camouflage some of those secrets but when it comes down to it, the best way to present a glowing face to the world is to care for the skin you’ve got.

For me, good skin has always relied on two things:

1. A consistent skincare regime. Yes, day and night cleansing and moisturising with a few “helping hands” products thrown in for good measure.

2. Wearing a sunscreen. Every. Day.

I’ve said it before and I’ll trot this line out every summer as long as I still have people listening … I’m a living, breathing scientific study into why sunscreen should be your number one skincare priority.

I’ve lived all my life in Queensland, half of that holidaying every school holiday time at the beach; the other half living at the beach.

Even in the days when sunscreen stung like nobody’s business and we got a giggle out of the Coppertone billboard at Surfers Paradise where the puppy pulled down the pants of the tanned kid to show a white bottom, I was wearing sunscreen.

Long before rashies were invented, mum had us wearing t-shirts over our swimsuits. Our childhood summer our clothes were permanently stained with zinc.

Did I think it was cool? Not on your life but when I “grew up” and was responsible for my own sunscreen, the habit was already in place. My face especially has always been covered up and slathered on.

The result: skin that’s not of a leather-like consistency. And so far no melanomas. Touch a very big hunk of wood on that one.

Not bad for a Queensland chick on the wrong side {just} of 45.

Unlock your style in 14 days | Always wear sunscreen | www.stylingyou.com.au

I don’t know what age you are or what your sun protection habits have been over the years but it’s never too late to embrace sunscreen. And if any teenagers or girls in their 20s are reading this, please, I implore you … that gorgeous flawless skin you have now? It won’t look so gorgeous post 30 if you don’t protect it.

It’s as simple as that.

UV rays will attack in two ways – UVB rays cause burning and can be blocked by the SPF in a sunscreen and UVA rays the silent by deadly assassins. These rays don’t make you burn {so you don’t know the harm they’re doing} but they reach into the layers of the skin and can cause long-term damage to cells and the immune system.

It’s these babies that bring on the wrinkles and skin cancer.

The great news is that it is SO easy to add sunscreen to your daily beauty routine – and then amp up the application {and choice of product} if you’re planning to be outside for any length of time.

Here’s the sunscreen prescription I recommend:

1. If you largely spend your days indoors and sun exposure is incidental, then I think it’s ok to choose a moisturiser, BB cream or foundation that includes a SPF.

2. If you spend a lot of time outdoors every day, then add sunscreen before anything else. Opt for 30 or 50+ and re-apply throughout the day, especially if you get sweaty.

3. If you’re heading to the beach or swimming in a pool, go hard. Go very hard. The extra reflection of the water will not help at all. You also need water resistance and frequent re-application.

Style work

Have a look at your current sunscreen supply. Have you got any in there that have passed their use-by-dates and need throwing out? Do you have the following?

1. A good sunscreen for your face. One that doesn’t make it feel icky but something you could wear everyday? I recommend: Dermalogica Super Sensitive Shield SPF 30+, Jane Iredale Glow Time Full Coverage Mineral BB Cream SPF 25+ and Invisible Zinc Environmental Skin Protector SPF 30+.

2. A good sunscreen for your body. One that offers protection and preferably something that can be shared among the whole family? I recommend: NIVEA Sun Light Feel Everyday Sun Lotion SPF 50+, Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Body Mist SPF 30+ and SunSense Sensitive SPF 50+.

3. A good sunscreen for the beach or any kind of water play. One that offers great water resistance and will give you a little licence to cool off in the water on a hot day? I recommend:  Ella Bache Great 50+ Sportsbloc, Neutrogena Wet Skin SPF 30+ {normal and kids version}, Woolworths Select Sports SPF 50+  and Zinc cream {especially under the eyes, tops of cheeks and across the nose}.

What’s your sunscreen wardrobe look like? Is caring for your skin always been a priority for you?

PS. Don’t forget if you want to share any of your progress along the way via photos, you can upload them in the comments or share via Twitter or Instagram with the hashtag #unlockyourstyle and make sure you tag me so I can find it (@stylingyou). Facebook uploads to my page are welcome  too.

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SY-Style-Manifesto-150wide

 

** The Styling You Holiday Style Camp {Unlock Your Style in 14 Days} is based on the Styling You Manifesto. If you don’t have your own, you can download it here. I’ll also be giving away a proper printed Styling You Manifesto from The Smile Collective every day to the reader who catches my eye with their comments and participation.

Unlock Your Style in 14 Days (Day 4 manifesto winner): Michelle Stedman. Michelle, could you please email me your postal address: nikki@stylingyou.com.au

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  • B-rend

    Hi Nikki, Can I please ask you an unrelated question about BB Cream. I’m a similar age (maybe a tad older), live not far from you and have swapped over to using BB cream (Garnier no oil). I’m not sure whether it’s me but I feel that the cream is sucking the moisture out from under my eyes and my wrinkles are increasing – have never noticed this before using Dove Tinted Moisturiser. Have you noticed it to be drying?……B:)

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Totally ok! I haven’t been using the Garnier one for a while – have had lots of others to play with but as it’s oil-free then yes, it could be contributing to this. I would suggest not putting it around your eyes for a week (use a cream concealer over an eye cream instead and see if it makes a difference). If it does, either keep doing it this way or maybe try another BB.

  • http://www.edenriley.com/ edenland

    Kudos to your mum! She was a bit ahead of her time, there was no slip-slop-slap ads back then. I got burnt to a fricken CRISP. Awesome post, Nikki xx

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Yes, happy about this; still haven’t gotten over the Barbie Doll ban ;) We still got burned because sunscreen not as effective back then but not as badly. x

  • Ana

    Sunscreen is a must! I use Invisible Zinc underneath my BB cream everyday. The best thing I can do for my skin, hands down. Another great post- thanks Nikki!

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Thanks Ana and a good choice there, that’s for sure!

  • http://www.facebook.com/GoddessMel1974 Melanie Lindner

    A terrific item to include in a great style series Nikki. Sunburn, melanoma and wrinkles are not cute (though I don’t mind the ‘happy lines’ I have LOL). It’s super important to remember sunscreen, and not just on these hot sunny days but all year round.

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Especially where we live when that UV strength can be very strong even in mid winter, Melanie!

  • http://www.facebook.com/whimsicaldale Rebecca

    My mum is a natural freckly redhead so we’ve always been pushed {pumelled?} into sunscreen use from a young age. Whilst I haven’t completely inherited her skin tone, I’ve watched her get numerous skin cancers frozen off her hands over time, and even one cut out of her nose {sounds worse than it was, but I’ll always remember how devestated she was that she couldn’t wear makeup for a few weeks afterwards to cover up her red nose, which coincided with her making a speech at my 21st}.

    I like to think her diligence in ensuring her children didn’t go through the same silly fads as she did has meant she is the reason I am often mistaken for being far younger than I really am, and I get so many compliments about my skin. For that, if nothing else I’m so very appreciative :)

    I’m sure in years to come, your children will be thanking you as well Nikki {if they aren’t already}!

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Yay for your mum too – and no my kids aren’t quite thanking me yet but I think they will. They’re also Generation Rash Vest so that will hopefully help as well!

  • Kelly

    Thanks Nikki – I am terrible with sunscreen and never consider the SPF of my make up or skin care. I need to do this. I already have dark spots on the right hand side of my face, arm and hand on the same side as I spend quite a lot of time driving for work. I am sorting this out today – thanks for the gentle “kick up the backside. Again, I know you have been telling us this for ages, I must be receptive to your messages at the moment. Step 1 – I am moving the sunscreen to the bathroom today so I make sure I use it. Thanks again!

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Oh Kelly, I’m so glad to hear this! It’s never too late too start and great that you recognise it’s probably from the driving.

  • Lisa mckenzie

    I have lived all my life in Sydney,but that is a big but it is still very hot and the UV meter is extreme on most days.When I was young I didn’t have a mum likes yours I lay in the sun most weekends and went to the beach slathered in coconut oil or baby oil puberty blues style,but the one place I did wear it always was my face and that is lucky indeed.I now am trying to remove the sunspots on the backs of my hands and that is not easy but they are fading and now yes I do wear sunscreen all the time,mostly I am inside or in and out but I wear a BB cream with a high sun protection or foundation with the same.I do think handcream should come with spf as our hands show our age very early on and they are always exposed especially when driving as my right hand is worse than my left,but overall I am not doing too bad for an old chook also on the wrong side of 45 closer to 50 where do the years go!!I I do have a wardrobe of sunscreen and apply it to the backs of my hands daily as well.I have seen firsthand what excessive sun exposure can do,a friend of my mum has always sunbaked with no protection and we thought she was quite cool back in the day…but she is in her 70s and looks horrible,skin like an old leather bag all cracked and horrible,but she still thinks brown is best ,I like a tan too but it comes out of a bottle,they look natural and give you a glow.
    I want to thank you Nikki for this series too,you have helped me get rid of things I do not need or never wore and I feel so much better for it,and I am more true to my own style,so a big big thank you from me as well.

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Thanks so much Lisa – and yes, I agree, why are hand creams not made with a SPF? Seems crazy if we can buy an under-eye concealer with one!

  • Jen ( SE Qld)

    Like you Nikki, a born and bred Queensland girl here too, unlike you I hardly ever wore sunscreen, caked myself in coconut oil sun lotions as they were called then and Baby oil as well and baked my skin every summer for more than 20 years on the beaches.

    Now into my 40’s, I have now had 2 Squamous Cell Carcinomas ( not Melanomas, but not nice ones either) removed from my face, one on my upper lip and one on my nose, have to keep to really regular visits to the dermatologist for skin checks, use retinoids every day to try and slow down the skin’s ageing process and live with the constant fear of more skin cancer removal as I get older. My poor Mother apologises to me all the time for not being diligent with sunscreen but from memory, I don’t think there were too many of us whose parents actually enforced it, so you are definitely one of the lucky ones Nikki.

    I wear sunscreen every day now, reapply it frequently, choose make up bases and lip balms with SPF and wear a hat whenever I am in the sun now after around 9.30am. Prior to that time, I usually get about 20 minutes exposure daily for Vitamin D levels to stay up. I also ensure my 14 yo daughter is very aware of the dangers of the sun and as she has seen me go through being stitched up and looking all bruised and battered a couple of times now from the removal of the cancers, she is definitely much more aware and conscious of the damage sun exposure can do. It’s definitely a very important part of any skin care routine without a doubt.

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Oh Jen, yes, I don’t know where my mum got that from but we were never allowed on beach or in pool without sunscreen. Very grateful. Won’t make me immune from what you’ve already gone through but so far so good.

      I think your daughter will have a better understanding of the importance of it than mine – but thankfully at 16 she’s still cooperative in the sunscreen department as her skin is paler than mine!

      • Jen ( SE Qld)

        I think that our children are made much more aware of the dangers of the sun from a young age nowadays as well Nikki which certainly helps and I am sure your daughter is a sensible young lady as well who will listen to her Mum’s good advice :)

        • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

          Sometimes ;)

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1069794835 Louise Di Trapani

    One bit you don’t cover and it’s just as important to protect is our LIPS!! My grandma always wore lipstick to the beach because it acted like a sun protector. I now get why she did (we don’t growing up). We tend to forget them yet nasties don’t discriminate with body parts. Get a lipstick, lip balm that has an spf 15+ and pop that onto your lips. Important – check the ingredient list – petroleum jelly will not protect them in fact it will encourage them to burn. I’m about to try a brand called Hurrow all natural lip balm (just waiting for it to arrive in the mail) with spf 15+ as I always have something on my lips because it makes me feel good.

    As for that puppy and the kid with the white bum….that’s my kids especially my son at the moment. It’s so cute and they wear rashies. You can tan with a rashie it just makes sense to wear them.

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Too true Louise. So important. I’ll make sure it’s added in for the ebook version. I’m actually using a great one by Mecca Cosmetica at the moment.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1069794835 Louise Di Trapani

        Oh what’s that like Nikki? I’m very interested in trying new lip products

        • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

          So far so good – it’s in a tub though and for the beach would probably prefer a stick. But I like the hydrating formulation and SPF is 25+

  • http://www.raisingwill.com/ Michelle @ Raising Will

    I’ve always applied sunscreen-infused moisturisers/BB cream in the mornings, but alas, I always forget to reapply during the day – need to work on that. And THANK YOU so much! Can’t believe I’m getting one of those gorgeous manifestos! Love your work Nikki xx

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      You’re very welcome Michelle!

  • http://www.jfgibson.com.au/ Jodi Gibson

    Absolutely Nikki. I always wear a foundation with an SPF and in summer always wear suncream when I head outdoors and reapply regularly! Also make sure I include the back of my hands – a forgotten spot sometimes but a place that shows aging first. Had to laugh at the zinc on the clothes – reminds me of my childhood!

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki | Styling You

      Zinc, zinc everywhere! But I’m grateful for it.