Vitamin C and SPF, Your Best Sun Defense

Hi there! I just want to start off by saying thank you so much for checking out my blog. You could be doing anything, anywhere but here you are with me and this brings me so much joy. Also, I have some affiliate links listed in this blog. If you so happen to want to try these items out and you purchase it from this blog you will be supporting me so that I can keep doing what I love.

With the warm weather around the corner, I know that we are looking to ditch our winter clothes and are ready to enjoy some much needed sunshine. At least, I know I am. I’m looking forward ditching my winter gear and breaking out my summer outfits. Of course, this means more of my skin will be showing and of course exposure to ultraviolet rays from the sun. This is why my skin needs the best sun defense it can get.

Sun protection should always be a part of our skin care, no matter the season. However, in my personal experience I tend to see the most damage in the summer, when the sun is out for longer periods of time and I’m outside for longer periods of time. When I don’t provide my skin with the best sun defense, I risk the chance of creating irreversible damage to my skin. We should always be ready and willing to slather on that SPF in the morning and be ready to put it on again throughout the day. Truth of the matter is that SPF breaks down over time. In the summer it breaks down faster due to sweat, water activities, etc. We do so much outdoor activities that the thin layer of sun protection we offer our skin isn’t enough to last all day, unless we re-apply.

Black don’t crack?

As a Black woman, I was often taught that the amount of melanin present in my skin was enough protection. Unfortunately, that is not true. As much as being Black and being a woman is a privilege and a superpower, it is not enough to protect me from UVA and UVB rays. The damage that these two ultraviolet rays do can often lead to life threatening damage if not sun protection is not enforced quickly. The good news is that it’s never too late to get started.

But how damaging are UVA and UVB?

First off, let me start off by that there are many different types of ultraviolet rays. However, the ones you’ll hear the most about are UVA and UVB. That’s because they are the most damaging to the skin. Keep in mind that the skin is the largest organ in our body. It is one of the primary defense to our survival. When it repeatedly gets hit with UVA and UVB rays, our skin continuously becomes exposed to free radicals that cause oxidative stress to our skin.

UVA rays are known for playing a major role in causing skin cancers. They are able to penetrate the skin much more deeply and play a role in forming wrinkles in our skin prematurely via photoaging. They cause damage to collagen, elastin and other dermal structures. There are about 500 times more UVA rays than UVB rays.

UVB tend to play a role in creating sunburn. They also play a big role in causing skin cancers, including the one that shows up as a black mole on the skin, malignant melanoma.

Vitamin C+ SPF = Power Couple

This is why antioxidants are so important when it comes to sun care protection. SPF is great for offering your skin sun protection, but to really boost it’s efficacy, you may want to add an antioxidant. A topical antioxidant, such as Vitamin C is great for neutralizing free radicals that would otherwise wreak havoc on your skin. Vitamin C is also good for brightening the skin by blocking the abnormal production of pigmentation to even the skin tone and fade dark spots.

Your skin is only as strong as you allow it to be. A good SPF should be able to block the sun’s rays but it’s not 100 percent effective. Pairing it with a good topical Vitamin C serum is a great way to ensure that your skin stays as youthful as you feel.

Not all vitamin C serums are the same. In fact there at least 10 different topical vitamin C serum. Some are water based and some are not. Also based on your skin type and how sensitive your skin is you may find that your skin will become irritated by some serums. This is why it’s important to do your research and to listen to your skin. If you’re skin is irritated or shows sign of tenderness you will want to stop using it and go for a water soluble based vitamin C serum. You may find that you’ll want to use L-ascorbic acid as it is the most ready to use when applied to the skin. However, if you find that this version of vitamin C is too harsh on your skin, then magnesium ascorbyl phosphate may be the better option.

You will want to put your serum on first, let it dry then follow up with your moisturizer and then your SPF. Always apply your SPF last, no matter what your favourite influencer says. It will do wonders on your skin and you can safely enjoy the sun while you are out and about.

Few Things To Remember

When it comes to sun protection, here are a few things you want to remember.

  1. Always wear your SPF, LAST.
  2. Always re-apply your SPF, especially if you are out in the sun.
  3. Your SPF, should last 20 days if applied correctly.
  4. You do not have to settle for an SPF with a white cast. Nobody wants to look casket ready
  5. A vitamin C serum will boost your SPF protection
  6. A vitamin C serum is great for protecting your skin.
  7. Listen to your skin.

I hope that this blog was helpful. Let me know in the comment section below.

retinol, the skin saver

Hey there! Thank you so very much for checking out my blog. I really appreciate it. You could be anywhere but here you are with me. Just to let you know that this blog does contain some affiliate links, which I hope you will appreciate. If you so choose to click on these links you will not spend extra money but you will get some cash back with your purchase and for referring you I get some money too. It won’t make me an overnight millionaire but I will be able to continue providing you with some more content like this one.

The last time I wrote about Hyaluronic Acid and that did pretty well so today I thought I’d blog about Retinol as part of my #nablopomo challenge. Even though, I’m not a dermatologist I believe that the best data can be found through research and personal experience. Once we have said data, we should be able to share those findings so that you as a consumer can make the right choice for your lifestyle.

I have heard about retinol for a while but it wasn’t until a few of my favourite skin care influencers and dermatologists started talking about retinol that I began to pay attention. As a Black woman, I was always under the impression that since I was Black my face would not crack if I simply washed my face and applied a moisturizer. Then I got older and realized that the signs of ageing do not discriminate simply because I’m black. Also, I realized I needed more than a cleanser and moisturizer to deal with my seasonal temperamental skin.

On a whim I bought Retinol from The Inkey List. I wasn’t expecting much but I knew that I didn’t want to settle for whatever my skin decided to do on any given day. Also, the price point was really good and I got cash back on my Sephora purchase by using a cash back app called AMPLI so of course I was in.

Ampli is a cash back app that I use to get cash back on my purchases. If you sign up using the code AMPLI5 you will get $5 without purchasing a thing. That’s just for signing up. What do you think about that?

Let’s go back.

What is retinol?

Retinol is an alcoholized version of Vitamin A. It is often used to treat Vitamin A deficiency, but that’s not what we’re here to discuss. It is used in skin care to prevent wrinkles and take care of acne, which is right along my alley. More specifically, retinol is known to unclog pores, reduce acne breakouts as a result which therefore decreases acne scarring…because there are less acne appearing. It’s the catalyst to clearer skin so to speak. It’s also known for increasing the cell turnover rate which helps to show your best skin. If you’ve got some hyperpigmentation and/or dark spot, retinol might be a solution to try.

Some people may experience peeling and redness but that’s due to irritation which can be a side effect to retinol usage. Eventually, your skin will toughen up and build a tolerance to it. I personally did not experience irritation or peeling. Thank goodness.

I’ve just been using for a week so I haven’t really noticed much of a change to my skin, except for the hydration, and turns out that it can take up to 12 weeks to see the expected results. It’s also best to wear retinol at night to ensure that it’s not rendered inactive during the day. Not because of the sun but because we tend to do a lot with our faces during the day. As always consistency is king when it comes to long lasting change.

I bought The Inkey List Retinol Anti-Aging Serum from Sephora about two weeks ago. It comes in a white squeeze with black top. Everything about this packaging screams simple. It has no fragrance. The fluid itself has a gel like texture with a slight yellow tint. It’s quite thin for a gel-cream fluid. You don’t need a lot because a little goes a long way. I apply all over my face for an even finish right after using they hyaluronic serum. The serum has 1% retinol, 0.5% retinoid and squalane to hydrate and soothe.

Overall, I like it. The price point is perfect. The packaging is perfect. I can’t wait to see what my skin will look like.

Ampli is a cash back app that I use to get cash back on my purchases. If you sign up using the code AMPLI5 you will get $5 without purchasing a thing. That’s just for signing up. What do you think about that? There’s tons of places you can use it at not just Sephora. You should check it out.

Have you used retinol? How do you feel about it?