Redheads need to be very careful when it comes to protecting their skin from the harmful sun rays. If you see signs that any of these characteristics are present when checking your skin, it is extremely important to see your dermatologist immediately. Why All Redheads Should Wear Sunscreen When FlyingUV radiation can be the same as a 20-minute tanning bed session.
Because of the common misconceptions about darker skin and skin cancer, studies consistently show that people of color are more likely to wait until the disease has reached an advanced stage to visit the dermatologist, or worse, don’t visit the dermatologist at all.
It’s true that darker skin does offer some increased protection against ultraviolet radiation, as people with dark skin have a higher melanin and eumelanin (brown-black pigment) content, which in turn reduces the risk of skin cancer induced by ultraviolet radiation from sun exposure.
To fully appreciate the effects of light on your skin and scalp viability you must first understand the Light Spectrum.
UVA, UVB and High Energy Visible Light (HVL) all share the aging spectrum of Solar Radiation*. The accumulation of daily sun exposure leads to premature aging of the skin, linked to the development of wrinkles, age spots, skin cancer and dry skin*.
In addition, Solar Radiation on your scalp skin leads to damage to your scalp's vascular and lymphatic network, forhead and neck sagging, premature hair loss and hair greying.
Solar Radiation floods our Planet with both potentially lethal and healing light wavelengths. The High Energy Visible Light from the green spectrum progressively through to Ultra-Violet have various negative effects on differing depths within the skin. We have all focused on SPF Factor Sunscreens to protect our skin from the aging effect of Solar Radiation however all evidence suggest that this SPF Factor may have very little to do with Skin and Scalp Anti-aging. The number for SPF Factor Sunscreen (i.e SPF-15, SPF-30, SPF-50) relates ONLY to the protection of the skin from UVB radiation and therefore SPF Sunscreen Factor has an insignificant benefit in the fight against SOLAR induced skin aging.
UVB Radiation (280-315nm) is relatively superficial and its penetration is restricted almost entirely to the Epidermal Layer of the skin only 0.15mm deep. It is this shallow concentration of energy which creates the sunburn and inflammation of the skin.
UVB irradiation is a complete carcinogen and can generate squamous cell carcinomas.Chromophores are substances that absorb Light.
Many candidates for substances capable of absorbing UV light in skin exist, but DNA and Urocanic acid have been identified as being biologically important.
Urocanic acid is found predominantly in the stratum corneum of the skin where it acts as an internal sunscreen or photoprotectant against UVB-induced DNA damage. UVB irradiation of Urocanic acid in the skin produces chemicals that suppress the skin's immune system.
Because UVB is essentially completely absorbed in the epidermis it is dangerous to long term health, however it has been important to understand that Photo-Aging changes in the skin are not caused in the main part by UVB. It is therefore also important to note that SPF Sunscreen in Cosmetics is almost a false promise of anti-aging protection and there is a large body of evidence to suggest that these sunscreen chemicals may be considered harmful to long term health. Anti-oxidants Protect.Anti-oxidants are the true answer to protecting your skin from damaging Solar Radiation whilst at the same time allowing healing light to support your skin.
If you must wear Sunscreen always use anti-oxidant rich serums first on your skin to quench free radicals as they are formed. It is important to remember that free radicals are generated as the Solar Radiation oxidises the lipids within your Sunscreen or Moisturiser also. At levels found in sunlight, UVA is 10 times more efficient than UVB at causing lipid peroxidation. Cells exposed the UVA can stop actively growing and dividing (a decrease in cell viability), or the cells can activate a genetic program of controlled cell death (apoptosis).
UVA creates Free Radicals and Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) in the Dermis layer of the skin and Lipofusin (Oxidaized Age Spots).UVA induced Free Radicals and Reactive Oxygen Species break down the skins vital Collagen and Elastin. UVA does not interact directly with the DNA but causes mutations that are mediated by Reactive Oxygen Species and in this way UVA promotes the formation of melanoma and carcinoma. UVA generates Free Radicals and ROS to activate enzymes within the skin that degrade collagen and elastin thereby promoting the formation of Glycation Wrinkles (deep, rigid wrinkles) and uneven pigmentation.
In addition to more efficiently generating ROS in skin, UVA causes additional biologic effects different from UVB. Whereas UVB is almost entirely absorbed in the epidermis, UVA is capable of reaching dermal layers and even affecting circulating blood cells and hair follicle viability in the scalp. This creates special problems for those who spend long hours in cars or naturally lite office windows. Because UVB is essentially completely absorbed in the epidermis, it has been important to understand that photoaging can be produced by UVA alone.
Small amounts of UV irradiation result in the induction of a series of destuctive proteases enzymes called matrix metallopeptidase (MMP's). Collectively, they are capable of degrading the collagen and elastin framework of skin, scalp and the vascular system.
High Energy Visible Light Radiation penetrates deeper than UVA through the dermis into thesub-dermis, the follicles of the scalp, the circulation vessels and the lymphatic vessels.
This spectrum of Solar Radiation promotes the greatest DNA damage via Free Radical and Reactive Oxygen Species. In turn it activates MMPs to promote degradation of Collagen and Elastin resulting in the formation of glycation wrinkles and advances premature aging.
It accelerates premature hair loss in both men and women by damaging the vital support network and structure of the follicle. It does this by creating Free Radicals and Reactive Oxygen Species which cause the degradation of the Lymphatic System and the Vascular System of the skin and hair follicle by more than 50% as we age.
This degrading of the Vascular and Lymphatic Systems in the skin and scalp is only evident in Solar exposed skin and does not take place in skin that has not been exposed, such as the skin of the buttocks.
It is this deep penetrating energy which penetrates easily through glass or water causing a cascade of deep inflammatory responses within the skin and scalp every day.
It penetrates the Sebaceous Gland and Follicle instigating Peroxidation of Sebum (Skin's natural oil), causing it to thicken and create Comodomes which block the follicle creating acne. Various factors in a chromophore's structure go into determining at what wavelength region in a spectrum the chromophore will absorb. It is clearly visible when light is viewed through a Prizm or in nature it may be seen in the form of a Rainbow. Red Spectrum Visible Light Radiation penetrates deeper than all other Solar Radiation through the dermis into the subcutaneous fatty layers below the Sub-dermis. Sunlight coupled with living in an oxygen-rich atmosphere causes unwanted and harmful stresses on skin and scalp. The most severe consequence of photodamage is skin cancer.Less severe photoaging changes for the skin result in wrinkling, scaling, dryness, and mottled pigment abnormalities consisting of hyperpigmentation and hypopigmentation.
Additionally, the deep circulatory and lymphatic vessels which support hair follicles may be degraded so that they no longer can supply the required oxygen and nutrition to the follicle, nor can the lymphatic system remove waste byproducts such as Dihydrotestosterone (DHT)and Hydrogen Peroxide.

For a photochemical reaction to occur in the skin, ultraviolet (UV) light and High Energy Visible Light (HEV) from the sun must be absorbed by a chromophore, beginning a series of photochemic reactions that may result in skin cancer or photoaging changes. These photochemical reactions can result in changes to DNA, including oxidation of nucleic acids initiated by free radical oxygen molecules. The body is well equipped to deal with oxidative stress, naturally using antioxidant enzymes and nonenzymic antioxidants to lessen these changes. However, sunlight and other free-radical generators (eg, smoking, pollution) can overwhelm the system, making natural protective controls inadequate, resulting in oxidative damage.
ROS are an inherent part of the normal daily metabolism of all cells, including skin and follicles. Through a series of 1-electron subtractions, molecular oxygen is in sequence changed to superoxide anion, hydrogen peroxide, hydroxyl radical, and, finally, to water.
Cellular enzymes and controlled metabolic processes ordinarily keep oxidative damage to cells at a minimum. These molecules are extremely chemically reactive and short-lived and they react at the place where they are created.
Other reactive molecules such as molecular oxygen, singlet oxygen, and hydrogen peroxide are not free radicals per se, but are capable of initiating oxidative reactions and generating free-radical species. They are much longer living than the other Free Radical Species and often migrate damage further into the extracellular tissue. The skin naturally relies on anti-oxidants to protect it from oxidant stress generated by sunlight and pollution. A relative symphony of enzymic and nonenzymic anti-oxidants interacts to provide protection in both the intracellular and extracellular space. Examples of enzyme anti-oxidants are Glutathione Peroxidase and Glutathione Reductase which reduce hydrogen peroxide and lipid hydroperoxides. Because low-molecular-weight anti-oxidants protect skin against oxidative stress, undergoing depletion in the process, it is desirable to add to the skin's natural reservoir by applying the anti-oxidants directly to skin and scalp.
Although anti-oxidants can be supplied to skin through a diet rich in anti-oxidants and oral supplementation, physiologic processes related to absorption, solubility, and transport limit the amount that can be delivered into skin and hair follicle.
Direct application has the added advantage of targeting the anti-oxidants to the area of skin needing the protection.
In addition, many anti-oxidants are deeply colored and have distinctive odours, adding to the complexity of producing an acceptable aesthetic product.
To protect deeper layers of skin, anti-oxidants need to be formulated in a way that delivers them into skin and scalp. This is why our Phyto-Stem Serums are all rich in colour and the aroma of pure plant essences.
Finally, anti-oxidants need to have photoprotective effects including reduction of erythema (redness), reduction of sunburn cell formation, reduction of DNA changes, reduction of UV immunosuppression, reduction of pigment abnormalities, and,eventually, reduction of skin cancer risk and photoaging changes. To achieve the SPF Factor rating of a sunscreen it must be applied at 2mg per square centimeter of skin. The average face skin is 300cm square which would require approximately 6grams of sunscreen on your face to achieve the SPF Factor indicated on the bottle. It has been clinically assessed that the average person applies less than quarter of the required amount of sunscreen to achieve the protection level suggested on the bottle label.
Now, recent acne studies have provided more information about the role of sebaceous lipids and inflammatory mediators including MMPs.(matrix metalloproteinase enzymes). Sebum includes several MMPs, which play a prominent role the inflammatory process of acne and MMP's are thought to originate in Keratinocytes (skin producing cells) and Sebocytes (sebum producing cells). It has been shown in laboratory tests that peroxidation (oxidation) of sebum lipids can activate inflammatory mediators in the mouth of the follicle. Oxidised squalene in sebum can also stimulate hyperproliferative behavior of keratinocytes, suggesting that this oxidised lipid may be partly responsible for comedone (black head and white head) formation.
In skin and hair, melanin differs in eumelanin or pheomelanin while in the eye it is exclusively eumelanin. Red hair is particularly rich in pheomelanin, whereas brown and black hair is composed mainly of eumelanin.Different melanin polymers have different response to UV radiation. It is therefore acceptable to assess that Red, Blonde, Light Brown and White Haired people are susceptible to free radical scalp skin damage after 5 to 10 minutes of UV exposure. As UVA levels are relatively constant all year round and a little effected by cloud cover, it is UVA and High Energy Visible Light which are the most damaging to long term scalp viability.
The sun emits a wide spectrum of electromagnetic waves of which ultraviolet light (UV) is the most aggressive towards cellular compounds. Large amounts of UVB and UVC are screened out by ozone, the major photoprotective agent formed in earth’s atmosphere. In contrast, hair is fully penetrated by both UVA and UVB.The Earth's ozone layer acts as a shield, absorbing around 90% of harmful ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun. The massive depletion of ozone due to CFC Aerosols in the past 50 years has left our scalp and face skin enormously more susceptible to accelerated aging from UVA than any previous generation. Ozone is not expected to reestablish itself back to pre-1970’s levels until the year 2060.
While healthy sun exposure carries its fair share of benefits - vitamin D is linked to improved mental and physical health - merciless tanning and painful sunburn can lead to premature ageing and serious health problems. Trouble by this phenomenon, artist Thomas Leveritt took to the streets to show people the true cost of tanning. With the help of a ultraviolet (UV) light, Thomas showed a selection of strangers the effect that sun exposure had on their skin - changes that are almost undetectable in natural light.
The participants were (understandably) shocked and intrigued by the marking on their faces.
And so Thomas took the opportunity by asking "if they wanted to put on some damn sunscreen already". For example, at the bottom of the spectrum radio waves have photons with low energies, so their wavelengths are long with peaks that are far apart. UVA rays have the longest wavelengths, followed by UVB, and UVC rays which have the shortest wavelengths. Certain oral and topical medicines, such as antibiotics, birth control pills, and benzoyl peroxide products, as well as some cosmetics, may increase skin and eye sensitivity to UV in all skin types. Exposure to UVB radiation helps the skin produce a type of vitamin D, (vitamin D3), which plays an important role - along with calcium - in bone and muscle health. UV radiation, in the form of lasers, lamps, or a combination of these devices and topical medications that increase UV sensitivity, are sometimes used to treat patients with certain diseases who have not responded to other methods of therapy. Phototherapy involves exposing a patient to a carefully monitored dose of UV radiation on a regular schedule.
UV exposure is also greater in areas of snow, sand, pavement, and water due to the reflective properties of these surfaces. UV is most intense at noon when the sun is at its highest point in the sky, and UV rays have the least distance to travel through the atmosphere.

Many people believe that you cannot get sunburned on a cloudy day; this is simply not the case. Some surfaces, such as snow, sand, grass, or water can reflect much of the UV radiation that reaches them.
The Ultraviolet Index (UVI) is a rating scale, with numbers from 1 to 11, which indicate the amount of skin-damaging UV rays reaching the Earth’s surface during the day. The daily UVI forecasts the amount of UV reaching your area at noon when the sun typically reaches its highest point in the sky.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) offers UVI forecasts by ZIP code on their UV Index page. Many illustrations of the UVI use a system of colors to designate levels of UV exposure for a particular area on the map. Note: If you need help accessing information in different file formats, see Instructions for Downloading Viewers and Players. If caught early, melanoma is almost always curable, but if left untreated, it can spread to other parts of the body where it can advance and become difficult to treat. If so, skin cancer might not be top of mind as a significant health threat, but beware – just because your skin is darker does not mean you are immune to skin cancer. One recent study found that non-white patients were more likely to have advanced and thicker melanoma at diagnosis and lower survival compared with white patients. Considering this, inherent sun protection within people of color varies a lot depending on skin color types and many people aren’t even aware of the risks.
Together, these free radicals and reactive oxygen molecules are called Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS).
Superoxide Dismutase protect cells from superoxide; extracellular Superoxide Dismutase protects the extracellular space. For topical application of anti-oxidants to be useful, however, several obstacles must be overcome. Instability makes them difficult to formulate in an acceptable, stable composition for cosmetic use. To facilitate maximum bio-availability our Serums and formulated for immediate Trans-follicular penetration, not slow Trans-epidermal penetration, and are always supplied in light-inpeneterable Airless Pump Packaging. Sunscreen is not the answer to long term protection of the skin from Solar Radiation and premature aging. I remember understanding on an intellectual level, from a young age, that smoking was bad, but I didn't really get it on a visceral level until I saw a smoker's blackened lungs. UV radiation is only one form of radiation and it is measured on a scientific scale called the electromagnetic (EM) spectrum.
All EM radiation (also called EM energy) is made up of minute packets of energy or 'particles,' called photons, which travel in a wave-like pattern and move at the speed of light.
The photons of microwaves have higher energies, followed by infrared waves, UV rays, and X-rays. While UVA and UVB rays are transmitted through the atmosphere, all UVC and some UVB rays are absorbed by the Earth’s ozone layer.
Sunburn is a sign of short-term overexposure, while premature aging and skin cancer are side effects of prolonged UV exposure.
However, the amount of UVB exposure needed to obtain a benefit depends on several factors, such as: the amount of vitamin D in your diet, skin color, sunscreen use, clothing, where you live (latitude and altitude), time of day, and time of year.
Also known as phototherapy, this method of UV exposure is performed by a trained healthcare professional under the supervision of a dermatologist. In some cases, effective therapy requires that a patient’s skin is first treated with a prescription drug, ointment, or bath that increases its UV sensitivity. Because the sun is directly over the equator, UV rays only travel a short distance through the atmosphere to reach these areas. Exposure is also decreased because UV rays must travel a greater distance through ozone-rich portions of the atmosphere to reach the earth’s surface.
Higher altitudes have greater UV exposure because there is less atmosphere to absorb UV rays. During the summer months the sun is in a more direct angle, resulting in a greater amount of UV radiation. Especially in the hot summer months, it is a good idea to remain indoors during the peak sun hours of 10am and 4pm. Even under cloud cover it is possible to damage your skin and eyes, and cause long-term damage. Sunglasses rated for 100% UV protection, a wide-brim hat, and broad-spectrum sunscreen can help protect your eyes and skin from reflected UV rays. The World Health Organization (WHO) has developed an internationally recognized system of colors corresponding to levels of the UVI. It is able to show the sun damage that has accumulated and will eventually begin to appear on her face over time. The effect was so profound that, to this day, I go so far as to hold my breath when walking past people smoking.Unfortunately, it's not easy to peer inside our own bodies and check out the health of our lungs.
At the top of the spectrum, gamma rays have photons with very high energies and short wavelengths with peaks that are close together.
Also, the FDA has not cleared or approved any indoor tanning device for producing Vitamin D. While this type of therapy does not eliminate the negative side-effects of UV exposure, treatment is carefully supervised by a doctor to ensure that the benefits outweigh the risks. UV radiation is also the strongest near the equator because ozone in these areas is naturally thinner, so there is less to absorb the UV radiation. The AAD is aiming to prove that you may like the tan color short-term, but once you accumulate the sun damage, it’s yours permanently. It's also difficult to see the effects sun exposure is having on our skin, especially when a tan can look so deceptively like a healthy glow. These ranges describe the activity level, or how energetic the photons are, and the size of the wavelength in each category. Jennifer Lee of REN Dermatology in Franklin, Tenn., a Board-certified Dermatologist and Diplomate of the American Board of Dermatology, who specializes in the diagnosis and management of skin diseases.
The system Dellavalle and his team used, Canfield's Visia Complexion Analysis, can cost upward of $20,000.

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