As the Summer Heats Up, Cosmetic Dermatologist Channing Barnett, MD, Shares Tips about Sun Safety and Self-Tanners

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Barnett Dermatology co-founder and cosmetic dermatologist, Dr. Channing Barnett, provides tips on how to maintain a youthful complexion and ward off wrinkles and sun damage during these sunny summer months.

"For starters," Dr. Channing Barnett says, "avoid sun tanning, sunburns and tanning beds all together."

With the summer here, it is time to start showing some skin. Doctor Channing Barnett is happy to provide an assortment of useful information for people looking to enjoy the sun without damaging their skin.

“For starters,” she says, “avoid sun tanning, sunburns and tanning beds all together. “

According to Dr. Barnett, proper application and reapplication of sunscreen is very important. For the sun protection factor (SPF) to be achieved, she recommends an application of at least one ounce (a shot glass full) on the skin, and frequent re-application, especially after sweating, swimming or drying off with a towel. Apply sunscreen on infants 6 months of age or younger only when adequate clothing and shade are not available. To prevent sun damage that leads to premature aging and skin cancers, Dr. Barnett recommends using a broad-spectrum (UVA and UVB coverage) sunscreen of a sun protection factor (SPF) of 35 or higher. Chemical sunscreens (includes those with active ingredients ending with -ate, and -one) have a greater potential for more skin irritation. Titanium and Zinc oxide are inorganic active ingredients which physically block damaging UVA and UVB rays. They are typically less irritating and provide excellent broad-spectrum protection.

Dr. Barnett also suggests wearing sun protective clothing and hats, as normal clothing loses its protective ability when wet. A good pair of broad spectrum (UVA and UVB) coverage sunglasses is beneficial as well. It is always best to seek shade but, remember, one can still be burned from reflective rays and filtered sun through cloud cover.

Want the sunkist glow without the risk of developing sun spots? Sunless tanning products (self-tanners) will help achieve that bronzed look without exposing one’s skin to harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays.

While there aren’t any new amazing ingredients, there are a lot more products on the market giving much more cosmetically-pleasing results. People looking for a good, sunless tan can even choose a shade that best suits their skin tone. According to Dr. Barnett, self-tanners are, “much easier to use and the shades, of which there are many more, are more natural.”

When it comes to applying self-tanners, “rushing is the most common reason for uneven color,” stated Dr. Channing Barnett in Parenting magazine. “Make sure to prep your skin by showering, shaving and moisturizing, as self-tanners work better on exfoliated, hydrated skin.”

“It is important to note,” says Dr. Barnett, “that most sunless tanning products don't contain sunscreen, so that if you spend time outdoors, sun protection with sunscreen and sun protective gear still remains essential.”

Self-tanners are commonly sold as lotions, gels, creams and sprays that are applied directly to the skin. Additionally, professional spray-on tanning is available at tanning salons, regular salons and spas.

Contact for interview:
Channing Barnett, MD
Barnett Dermatology


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Channing Barnett
Barnett Dermatology
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