Skin sun spots, also called solar lentigines (solar lentigo if it is just one spot) are common. In my dermatology practice, I am asked every day by my patients to help them fade or get rid of their unwanted sun spots. There are a number of “tricks” and tips that we use to do this. Because sun spots are so tenacious, the best results come from an “all of the above” approach to controlling sun spots. That means using a combination of:
- prevention (to stop the development of new spots or darkening of existing spots)
- skin care products that fade existing spots
- procedures that help remove stubborn sun spots
Do all three and it may be possible to have sun-spotless skin!
This is the second post in my skin sun spot series. In the first post I explained what causes sun spots on skin. Click here if you missed it because to prevent sun spots you need to know why you have them in the first place.
Over the next three posts I’ll give you the details for my “all of the above” tricks and tips to control skin sun spots so you too can have “spotless” skin. I’ll start now with Step 1, Prevention:
How do you prevent skin sun spots?
By keeping UV rays off of your skin.
You do this by wearing broad spectrum sunscreen every day (365 days a year) on all of your exposed skin. As long as there is sunlight there are UV rays that will cause sun spots. Those UV rays come through windows and clouds, bounce up from the ground to get under your hat, or sneak into the shade. Only those parts of your skin covered by clothing don’t need sunscreen.
In my opinion, the best sunscreen to prevent age/sun spots is mineral zinc oxide sunscreen. Its protection is broad spectrum, reliable, and it lasts longer than chemical sunscreens. It is my belief that zinc-oxide-containing sunscreen is the most reliable type of sunscreen to protect your skin. To read more about why I prefer this active ingredient over all others click here.
To see all the zinc oxide the sunscreens that I recommend for my patients and that I use myself, click here. Some of my favorite sunscreens are:
“My favorite product from Dr. Bailey is Citrix Sunscreen.”
I love that it contains zinc and omits the chemicals. My 59 year old skin is still prone to acne and this does not cause my skin to break out. It also allows me to wear blush, bronzer and concealer without causing the make up to “pill up”. Helen I 6/13/14
Because you want to keep all UV rays off of your skin to prevent sun spots, you want to back up your sunscreen with everything you can. That means wearing a hat and sun protective clothing to keep even more UV rays from hitting your skin. Seek the shade and avoid being in direct sun when possible. Click here for more of my sun protection tips.
Yes, this is not easy to keep all the UV rays off of your skin but remember, it’s worth the effort because UV Rays = Sun Spots
What are the best skin care products to fade existing skin sun spots?
I’ll cover that in my next post.
What are your top questions and concerns about skin sun spots? Let us know by commenting below.
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Don’t miss the other posts in this series:
Post 1. What Causes Sunspots on Skin?
Photo attribution: Thanks and gratitude to © Laura Doss/Corbis