The Cultural Evolution of Tanning and Its Dangerous Effects on Our Skin
Just How Much Does the Sun Age Your Skin?
The aging of the skin starts to appear at 30 years of age. It deteriorates on average 1.5% per year. Moderate to severe sun exposure adds another 1 – 1.5% of skin degeneration. Thus by the age of 70, sun loving people might not only lose over 90% of their skin’s strength (collagen), thickness (hyaluronic acid), and elasticity (elastin) but also the fibrocytes and capillaries which maintain and nourish it.
Before 1950, sun exposure and the subsequent tanning of the skin was undesirable because white porcelain skin was “in”. To avoid the dreaded “tan”, umbrellas, hats, bathing suits covering most of the body, etc. were used.
In the early 1950’s a health benefit of sun exposure (stimulating the production of vitamin D) became well known. Subsequently a tan became a sign of health and even doctors would recommend “going outside to get as much vitamin D as you can.”
The tan also expressed affluence and leisure time. Early in this “sun tanning” period there were no effective sun screens and even as they developed, people didn’t use them because they wanted to “look healthy”.
In this following video, Dr. Eric Lewis explains how sun damage (ultraviolet light A and B) penetrates through the top layer of the skin, the epidermis, and causes basophilic degeneration of the upper dermis. As this UVL damage accumulates, the skin’s resistance is eventually unable to compensate for it. When the change reaches that “threshold”, the basophilic degeneration stimulates the epidermis to produce pre-cancers and cancers and lasts a lifetime.
Where and How Sun Damage Effects the Skin | Pre-Cancers
This cultural change has led to one of the most common, most costly and in the case of melanoma, most dangerous health problems in the United States – skin cancer. The lighter the pigmentation of a person’s skin, the more vulnerable he/she is to sun damage.
Now, almost 30% of all visits to dermatologists involve the negative effects of sun damage.
Skin pre-cancers (actinic keratoses) and cancers (basal cell carcinomas, squamous carcinomas and melanoma) are by far the most common malignancies in the world.
What’s worse is that once the signs of sun damage and skin malignancies start, they will continue for years and even decades even if you totally avoid more sun damage. Why?
And why does the pre-cancer and cancer formation happen decades after you have received the majority of your sun damage?
The explanation is based on where and how the sun damage effects the skin.
Most people don’t realize the importance of lip health. It is one of the most dangerous locations to develop sun damage and skin cancer.
Persistent dryness (xerosis) and cracking of the lips (especially the lower lip) is commonly caused by chronic sun damage (actinic cheilitis). Actinic cheilitis creates severe inflammation which leads to destruction of collagen, elastin and can kill fibrocytes that build and maintain the skin.
Moisturizers and other lip products slow future injury but do not address this underlying damage, and therefore offer little or no rejuvenating benefit. Sun damage, pre cancers and cancers prevent the healing process and can pose significant danger. Actinic Keratoses on the lower lip can progress to squamous cell carcinoma. In fact, the lip area is one of the only places on the skin which that has a predisposition to metastasize into the body.
Reduce the Dermal Basophilic Degeneration that Stimulates Skin Cancer Formation
This damage to the skin comes in two forms: direct and indirect. Ultraviolet light A and B has a direct negative physical and chemical effect. This creates a tremendous amount of inflammation, adding to the total damage.
UVL-A and UVL-B also cause hydroxyl radical formation (free radicals) from the breakdown of water. Indirectly this not only damages the skin acutely but also chronically. These free radicals continue their severe destructiveness many hours and possibly days after sun exposure. They are “quelched” by antioxidants such as Miracle of the Sea skin topicals with Natural Marine Extract or Miracle of the Sea Rejuvenating Lotion with Vitamin C 15%.
The ingredients in our patented Natural Marine Extract™ seem to show (by biopsy) to slowly erase this upper dermal basophilic degeneration which stimulates skin cancer formation. Thus, these ingredients, not only create younger, thicker skin but it also generates healthier skin.
Natural Marine Extract is available in Miracle of the Sea Aloe Vera Gel, Almond Oil and Serum skin topicals, Lip Health Balm as well as Natural Marine Extract Capsules (products are on the side bar here).
Please listen to what customers have to say about their sun damage and Miracle of the Sea Natural Marine Extract. There are videos at the bottom of this page and more on our testimonials page.