How to Avoid Sun Damaged Skin

Most of us love the feeling of the sun’s warmth on our skin on a beautiful summer day; but as great as it can feel to relax at the beach, skin fully exposed, the sun is not your skin’s friend. Without adequate sun protection, your skin can suffer significant damage and be at risk for a number of issues such as premature ageing, skin cancer, pigmentation and more. In fact, exposure to the sun and ultraviolet light is the cause of up to 90% of the visible signs of ageing.


Rain, hail or shine – you can still suffer from sun damage. Every time you step outside, and the sun touches your skin, you are at risk. Sun damage can present in a variety of ways throughout your lifetime, including:

  • Unusually dry skin: the sun can cause the skin to lose moisture and its natural oils, leading to a flaky, dry and wrinkled appearance.

  • Actinic keratosis: small, scaly patches of skin that have a red, pink, yellow or brown tint.

  • Sunburn: skin injury that occurs immediately after sun exposure that results in painful redness and blisters.

  • Photoaging: premature ageing caused by the sun that presents as coarse wrinkles, rough skin texture, increased fragility and blotchy pigmentation.


Our skin is made up of three layers; the epidermis, the dermis and the subcutis/hypodermis. The dermis contains fibres that give the skin a youthful, firm appearance including collagen and elastin as well as nerves, blood vessels, sebaceous glands and sweat glands. Unfortunately, UV radiation can cause damage to these elements. UVA and UVB waves cause damage by affecting the skin’s DNA which leads to cells in the dermis producing melanin in the epidermis to prevent further damage. So, if you think a tan is healthy, think again. That sun-kissed glow after a day at the beach is really your skin attempting to prevent damage. You’re always better off opting for a spray tan.

UVB rays are generally responsible for sunburn, whereas UVA rays contribute to photodamage and the premature ageing that accompanies it. This is because UVA rays can travel deep into the dermis and damage collagen fibres, leading to abnormal production of elastin. The overproduction of elastin often leads to the production of enzymes called metalloproteinases. These enzymes can degrade collagen, lead to the formation of wrinkles and contribute to the appearance of leathery skin.


Photodamage is a result of continuous sun exposure throughout your life and is related to a variety of skin issues such as skin cancer and premature ageing. The good news is that damage caused by the sun can be prevented with appropriate protection and skincare. You may have heard it before, but we’ll repeat it. It is essential to wear sunscreen every day. Unless your foundation or moisturiser has an SPF with 30+ or higher, wearing additional sunscreen under your makeup is a must if you are going to be spending a lot of time in the sun.

Sunscreen is actually the best weapon we have against skin ageing for a good reason. Research has found that regular sunscreen use can keep photoaging at bay for significant periods of time. Preferably, choose an SPF 30+ or higher such as DMK Soleil Defence SPF50+. DMK Soleil Defence SPF50+ is a broad-spectrum sunscreen that helps to protect against both UVA and UVB damage. Made in Australia, it is specially formulated to protect against sun damage, without clogging pores. It is a fantastic choice for everyday wear as it nourishes the skin while at the same time blocking the sun.


If you are experiencing signs of sun damage, you might be wondering, what now? Getting onto a DMK skin revision program with the right Home Prescriptives is an excellent place to start. By consulting with a DMK Skin Technician, you will get a specialised treatment plan and home care that is right for your skin type and addresses your areas of concern. Some of our favourite home care products that can help with signs of sun damage include:


  • A sophisticated serum that helps stimulate collagen production, DMK’s Direct Delivery Vitamin C helps to suppress pigmentation, brighten dark spots and regenerate healthy skin. Vitamin C is an antioxidant and is a must to help protect and heal the skin from damage.


  • Featuring beta-glucan, a stimulator of the Langerhans cells which initiates the immune and reparative functions of the skin, Beta Gel is a must for your beach bag. Beta Gel is excellent for traumatised skin, including sunburned skin as it incites the feedback loop that triggers the synthesis of new collagen and helps reduce the appearance of wrinkles. To help heal sunburn, apply Beta Gel within 20 minutes of being sunburnt.


  • Formulated with a powerful blend of vitamin A’s to help to regulate cell proliferation, the flow of oil and prevent cell degeneration, Revitosin is a sun-damage essential. Vitamin A helps to rejuvenate the skin by promoting the growth of healthy cells and inhibiting the growth of unhealthy ones. It is fantastic for revising signs of sun damage and ageing.

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