Beauty advice - Save your skin from the summer sunshine

Protect your skin from harmful sun rays

Protect your skin from harmful sun rays - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

We asked some top beauty experts for their skincare tips when taking a break by the coast this summer

You might find this hard to believe, but the Yorkshire coast in July and August can be a tad on the unpredictable side. The only thing you can be really sure of is that it’ll be hot and sunny. Or rainy. Or windy. Or freezing cold. Or humid (stranger things have happened). Still, whatever the weather, you can relax — because you’re on holiday.

The same can’t be said for your skin, however. It’s doing its job even when you’re not doing yours — and coastal living can be extra-tough on it. So, you know, don’t take it for granted when you’re beside the seaside.

‘While sea water, sand and sun are the ingredients for an exciting and memorable holiday break, they are also the elements that can wreak havoc on your skin,’ says Dr Howard Murad, leading dermatologist, pharmacist and founder of Murad skincare, whose products and treatments can be found in Yorkshire salons.

To begin with, Dr Murad suggests looking for suncare products with added antioxidants, because these can help protect against free radical damage and can increase the efficiency of your SPF (sun protection factor); plus he believes in intensifying your natural sun protection from the inside with pomegranate, which contain polyphenols like ellagic acid. ‘I have conducted clinical trials that show roughly a 25 per cent improvement in SPF when pomegranate is added to a diet,’ reveals Dr Murad. In fact, eating well generally can save your skin, he insists; so while you’re at the beach, satisfy your hunger pangs by snacking on healthy foods. ‘A handful of walnuts will help satisfy your daily cell-hydrating omega-3 fatty acids which helps attract water to dehydrated cells and connective tissue. Apricots contain high amounts of Vitamin A. Vitamin A normalises the production and life cycle of skin cells.’

Dr Murad also stresses the importance of wearing sunscreen and protective clothing. ‘When in the water or relaxing on the sand, remember that they will reflect the damaging rays of the sun, which can increase your chance of sunburn,’ he says. ‘Whether out in the sun or on the beach, always be sure to wear sunscreen and reapply every hour.’

In fact, whenever you’re spending long periods of time outdoors, whether the sun is shining or not, SPF should be your daily defence against UVA (which ages skin) and UVB (which burns), says Shula Starkey, founder of ARK Age Aware Skincare.

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‘A primer with SPF30 is an ideal way to build sun protection into your daily routine without compromising your make-up,’ she says. Shula also underlines why extra hydration is essential when holidaying by the coast.

‘The effects of salt, wind and sun are extremely drying on the skin,’ she says. ‘To ensure your skin stays plump and soft add a serum underneath your usual moisturiser.

‘To keep the skin on your body smooth and soft, pack a body brush and brush skin every morning before you shower with long strokes working towards the heart.’ And because long coastal walks often bring hot sunshine one moment and gale-force winds the next, Shula always keeps a facial mist in her rucksack to refresh, cool and spritz on hydration.

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