By: Demitria Lyles
We’ve all been guilty of it on numerous occasions. We go out on a hot, summer day to run with the group, walk the dog, and sit by the pool. Yes, your BGR shirt keeps you cool during the run, you make sure you wear a hat while walking the pooch, and you’re sporting your new fabulous bikini poolside. But you forgot one thing: sunscreen.
As African Americans, we take pride in having wonderful skin tones and not aging as fast as many other races, but we often forget the importance of wearing sunscreen outdoors. Along with everything else in nature, the sun does not have a skin preference. It sheds rays of ultravioliet light and shows no remorse to our glowing, beautiful skin.
“While African Americans have extra melanin (a defense mechanism that helps the skin tan and protect us from harmful sun rays), that same melanin does not protect from all harmful UVB rays,” says Dr. Neal Schultz, a Manhattan dermatoligist. Harmful UV rays can speed up the aging process in our skin and can also cause skin cancer.
Pride yourself in being brown, beautiful, and having that extra layer of melanin! Preserve the sexy and preserve the skin! So, at least 20 minutes before you go out for a run or whatever the sun calls you out to do today, put on some sunscreen with a minimum of SPF 15. Your skin will truly thank you!