SUN PROTECTION 

canopea -
UVA and UVB are types of Ultra Violet radiations that are classified according to their wavelength.
They differ in the extent they can penetrate the skin. The shorter the wavelength, the more harmful the UV radiation. Short-wavelength UVC is the most damaging type of UV radiation. However, it is completely filtered by the atmosphere and does not reach the earth’s surface.
UVB
Medium-wavelength UVB cannot penetrate beyond the superficial skin layers. It is responsible for delayed tanning and burning; in addition to these short-term effects it enhances skin ageing and significantly promotes the development of skin cancer. Most solar UVB is filtered by the atmosphere.
UVA
The relatively long-wavelength UVA accounts for approximately 95% of the UV radiation reaching the Earth’s surface. It can penetrate into the deeper layers of the skin and is responsible for the immediate tanning effect. Furthermore, it also contributes to skin ageing and wrinkling. For a long time it was thought that UVA could not cause any lasting damage. Recent studies strongly suggest that it may also enhance the development of skin cancers.
IN EUROPE, SKIN CANCERS INCREASE 5 – 7 % PER YEAR, A SAD RECORD OVER THE LAST TWENTY YEARS.
(French League Against Cancer)
IF WE DON’T CHANGE OUR HABITS REGARDING SUN EXPOSURE, SOON A KID BORN IN 2001 WILL HAVE 15 x MORE CHANCE OF DEVELOPPING SKIN CANCER THAT SOMEONE BORN 70 YEARS AGO.
(Syndicat national des dermatologues)
AN AVERAGE COTTON TSHIRT LETS ABOUT 1/5TH OF SUN RAYS THROUGH WHEN DRY (1 OUT OF 3 WHEN WET), COMPARED TO 1 / 50TH OF SUN UV RAYS FOR A UPF 50 SHIRT.
(Skin Cancer Foundation)
1 AUSTRALIAN OUT OF 3 WILL DEVELOP SKIN CANCER DURING HIS LIFETIME (AND 1 AMERICAN OUT OF 5).
(Cancer Council Australia)
EVERY YEAR, WE ESTIMATE THAT BETWEEN 6000 AND 14 000 TONS OF SUNCREAM END UP IN SEA WATERS.
(Archives of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology)

People with darker skin are not concerned by excessive sun exposure

Screen Shot 2016-05-09 at 2.18.35 AM
Darker skins contain more melanin than lighter colored skins. Melanin, which also determines hair and eye color, is thought to protect skin cells from UV damage. However, skin cancers on darker skins are often detected at a more advanced stage and can therefore be more dangerous.

A cotton t-shirt offers sufficient protection from the sun since I dont get burnt

Screen Shot 2016-05-09 at 2.18.35 AM
Fabrics do not all protect with the same efficiency. The tighter the knit, the less UVs can pass through the fabric. A cotton t-shirt, which has a UPF 5, looses approximately 50% of its efficiency when wet, whereas UPF 50+clothes with polyamide and elastane, which have a tighter knit, keep their UV protection factor, even when the fabric is wet.

Kids scar better than adults

Screen Shot 2016-05-09 at 2.18.35 AM
Babies’ and children’s skin is thinner then that of adults and their cells do not yet hold sufficient melanin to protect them from the sun. They are thus particularly vulnerable against the sun’s damaging effects.

In order to tan well, you must get sun burnt first

Screen Shot 2016-05-09 at 2.18.35 AM
A red skin means that it has already suffered aggression from the sun. Sunburn is a group of broken blood vessels that end up forming. If the skin peals, it means that it has been burnt. Burnt skin contains very little melanin and is thus very vulnerable to UVs.
where are we now
How did we get there in the first place?
(glad you asked)
Sun tan has evolved in a cyclical manner over the course of history.

Between 1990 and 2009

Tanning salons all over the world have been multiplied but 5. And yet, people who have used tanning beds before the age of 30, are 75% more likely to get some kind of skin cancer in their lifetime.

1980’s

Tanning lines have become unsightly and UV salons have become hugely popular. We’ve gone from bikini to mono, then topless and finally strings, which are being worn rolled down, in order to fade tanning lines.

1970’s

Sun tans have become a sign of success for people who are able to afford outdoor activities and holidays. Tanned foundations and self-tanning creams are fulfilling the social need to appear tanned.
Celebrities are embracing this trend and their excessive tans show an overdose of sun exposure and self-tanning creams. Commercial means to make skin look more tanned are starting to appear on the beauty market.

1960’s

In France, Brigitte Bardot is a phenomenon following her role in “Manina, the Girl in the Bikini”. Baby oil is being used to accelerate the effects of the sun.

1940’s

Glossy magazine feature ads, which encourage sun bathing. At this time, swimsuits are starting to get smaller and smaller until the birth of the “bikini” in 1946, which became a fashion revolution.

1925-1930

Coco Chanel lead the way to a new trend when she got a sun burn following a boat trip on the Mediterranean. People said that “she probably invented sun tanning. At the time, people said she pretty much invented everything.”
Sun tanning has become a key trend and a social must. Encouraged by the success of the « paid annual leave », mass tourism rushed to beachfronts.

1903

We understood that rachitis is the consequence of a lack in vitamin D. Niels Ryberg Finsen was awarded the Nobel Prize in Medicine and Physiology for his treatment using light radiation.

1890

The working class lived in dark environments and houses, whether in factories, mines or even their homes. Pale skin trend ended right after the industrial revolution.
We can find cases of rachitis and other bone deformations among children. In 1980, the Scottish doctor Theobald Adrian Palm will find that light plays an essential part in developing bones structures.
The surgeon John Harvey Kellogg (who also created the corn flakes), invented the Sanitarium, which reportedly helped cured England’s King Edward of gout.

XVIIIth CENTURY

Fair skin was a sign of wealth. One had to have pale skin in order to differentiate oneself from farmers and peasants.

VICTORIAN ERA 

Under the reign of Queen Elisabeth, one would use lighting cream – some of which included lead and arsenic, in order to lighten up the skin, sometimes provoking death by poisoning.