Anxious about Sun Exposure?
If you grew up during the early 2000s era of tanning beds, then unprotected sun exposure may cause you anxiety. You’re haunted by the idea of skin cancer and premature wrinkles—plus the memories of painful burns and awkward tan lines.
In recent years, scientific communities have raised alarm about the connection between sun exposure and skin cancer. Skincare companies are even including sunblock in their makeup products—to protect against premature wrinkles and damage.
But the sun has been providing energy to our species since the beginning. Is it really bad?
There is increasing evidence to show that moderate sun exposure is essential to our overall well-being.
Humans are natural creatures who thrive when exposed to natural things. We believe there’s a better answer to sun exposure—one that allows us to receive the healthy benefits of the sun without risking skin cancer or slathering our bodies in chemicals.
The Benefits of Healthy Sun Exposure
Think back to your childhood days. Remember when you ran barefoot in your backyard and built castles out of dirt? You spent all your time outdoors—never thinking about the effects it may have on your skin.
Did you feel healthier?
While we now spend most of our time indoors, plants and animals continue to thrive in nature. By changing our daily habits and our relationship with the sun to mirror our ancestors, we can reap the many benefits.
Healthy Sun Exposure Builds Strong Bones
Sun exposure and natural Vitamin D are associated with stronger bones and teeth. With regular sunshine, you may be less likely to experience cavities and brittle bones. You’ll feel healthier and more athletically confident, too.
Sun Exposure May Help Prevent Chronic Illnesses
People with low levels of Vitamin D have been shown to be more susceptible to chronic illnesses. Especially with the rise of autoimmune diseases, a little extra sunshine is a great way to boost your immune system naturally.
It Regulates Sleep Patterns
Raise your hand if your midnight Netflix sessions are getting out of control.
A good way to reboot your sleep patterns and regulate your circadian rhythm is to spend more time in the sun. Even fifteen minutes a day can drastically improve how you feel.
If your schedule allows, try adding a walk during sunrise or sunset into your daily routine. Working outside or sunbathing for a few minutes during midday is a great option, too.
It Increases Serotonin Levels
Those who struggle with depression and mood swings are likely to have low levels of serotonin. But in many cases, this can be reversed with a simple medical protocol that’s easy and free: sunshine!
Sun isn’t the only way to steady your emotions, and it shouldn’t be the only remedy you use to heal from depression and mood swings. But it is incredibly powerful—and easy to add into your daily life.
With careful sun exposure during the morning and afternoon hours, you may feel more alert, happy, and emotionally capable.
Chemicals Found in Drugstore Sunscreens
While drugstore sunscreens may help prevent painful burns, they contain a lot of questionable ingredients. Oxybenzone is a known hormone disruptor, and traces of benzene—a known carcinogen—were recently found in drugstore sunscreen brands.
While trying to prevent skin cancer, it’s possible that we’ve gone too far with our skincare products—and increased the risk of cancer due to chemical ingredients.
Should You Take Vitamin D Supplements?
Although Vitamin D supplements can be extremely helpful, these supplements may not absorb as well as we think. As with anything synthetic, it’s better to get your Vitamin D directly from the source.
When you choose the sun as your source, your body is able to regulate exactly how much sun you get—and use its own protective mechanisms and signs to tell you when you’re getting too much.
How to Protect Your Skin from Unhealthy Sun Exposure
While your body does have a natural way of protecting you from unhealthy sun exposure (aka tanning!), too much of a good thing can still be harmful. No one wants to spend their tropical vacation suffering from sunburn symptoms.
Here are some tips to help you regulate midday sun exposure, without turning to chemical-laden sunscreens.
Consider Your Skin Type
Skin type and ethnicity have a lot to do with your personal sun tolerance. Even within your family, you’ve probably noticed that some people are more susceptible to sunburns than others. Take a skin quiz to learn your personal sun tolerance. Use this information along with the UV index and time spent outside to determine whether or not to protect your skin.
Shorten Exposure Times
You may be able to get your body used to more sun exposure by shortening exposure times. If 45 minutes makes you burn, spend 30 minutes sunbathing every day until you’ve built up more of a tolerance. You can also go outside a few times a day for 5-10 minutes.
Wear Protective Clothing
Protective clothing is a natural way to fend off sunburns—and it’s not as uncomfortable as you may think. Wear a white cotton t-shirt and hat to keep your shoulders and face protected. You can also opt for an umbrella.
Trust Your Body
Give your body the benefit of the doubt. We’re incredibly intuitive beings, and our bodies send signals when they’ve had too much sun. Be aware of excessive thirst, tingling of the skin, headaches, and any other signs that your body may be ready to go inside.
Let Toups and Co Help Make Your Beach Days Memorable
For the days when you can’t avoid long-term sun exposure, we’re rolling out a new organic and all-natural sunscreen to help protect against painful burns.
With ingredients like tallow, non-nano zinc oxide, and olive oil, this organic sunscreen nourishes your skin and protects your microbiome while you’re out enjoying the heat.