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What do you do to mitigate sun damage that you caused in your youth?

By September 26, 2008 - 10:02am
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Come on, baby boomers. You know who I'm talking to! We "laid out" with tiny bikinis and baby oil to magnify the effects of the sun. We lived in a world where "tan" was still a synonym for "healthy-looking," and we did a lot of damage to our skin along the way.

Before the dangers of suntanning were well-known, many of us spent our summers in the sun, sunscreen-free. We'd spend days at the pool or the lake, and by the end of the summers our moms couldn't tell if we were really that tan, or just plain covered with dirt.

Now that I'm older, I haven't tanned for 20 years, and I try to wear sunscreen whenever we're outdoors or at the beach or the lake. But I still worry about the damage I caused to my skin back then. I see rows and rows of lotions and moisturizers on the market now for reversing sun damage, and was just wondering if anyone has had results they would like to share?

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I am a gen x-er also and never really tanned at all. I was a goth in art college and wore white zinc cream on my face! Thanks heavens for that "loopy" phase, as at 38 I have very pale, smooth skin and very little wrinkling.
I still keep out of the sun...and that was hard in southern California, though I recently moved to the bay area and it is definitely cooler and less sunny overall here!
For any little freckles, I have an occasional photofacial. You can see what it is and how they perform it here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0FuxdDyl_eY
It is non invasive and pretty much painless. I might have one of these every couple of years and besides this I use a good sunscreen by Kiels and a nice moisturiser at night. I never ever lie out!

June 1, 2009 - 12:50pm

My olive skin tans easily. My daughter has that fair, Asian skin that looks pretty, but sunburns easily. I have to force her to apply the sunscreen before we head out for our training runs.

My grandfather lived with skin cancer from age 30 until he died. Although he did what he could to maintain a good quality of life, imagine having to wrap yourself up as tight as a mummy against the sun! I'm a Baby Boomer-Bikini Beach Bunny, lol! Fortunately, zinc oxide was the status symbol among my crowd, and skin care was important even back in my day, so I think I'm doing okay. The freckling, well...

September 26, 2008 - 6:45pm
HERWriter Guide

Great question!

I was very guilty of tanning!

I'm not a Boomer, I am a Generation Xer! But even teens now are abusing the sun - we just don't seem to get it, when we're young! This is because we can't see the damage yet - it's only in our 30s and 40s and beyond that we realize that summers in the sun would have been much better if we had been slathered in sun block!

Now that I'm in my 30s (I stopped tanning at age 33) I protect myself all the time, use good moisturizers and pretty much pray to the Sun Gods that I don't end up looking like a leather purse when I'm older!

I grew up in a country that is beautiful - because it rains all the time! So when I finally had hot summers to enjoy in my 20s, I ignored advice and lay out all summers for nearly a decade. I even did the tanning beds too.

Hopefully by stopping when I did and taking good care of myself now, I will have escaped the major damage. Looking at my mother's side of the family - the women have amazing skin so I'm also hoping the Gene Gods are equally kind!

September 26, 2008 - 12:14pm
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