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Sun Damaged Skin

Sun Damaged Skin

What is Sun Damaged Skin and What Can You Do About It?

When the sun is shining, and the weather is warm, it’s difficult not to step outside. Exposing yourself to the sun does come with some health benefits. In addition to the synthesising Vitamin D, it can boost your mood, and make your bones stronger.

However, if you encounter too many UV rays, your skin is in trouble. Sometimes, those UV rays will confuse the skin’s cells, causing them to multiply faster and turn into a skin cancer. In other, less dangerous, instances, you’ll experience sun damaged skin and sunspots.

If you’ve ever experienced sunburn, the chances are you’ve damaged your skin. Sunburn places you at higher risk of sunspots, as well as uneven pigmentation. Over the years, too much sun will lead to wrinkles appearing. Such wrinkles occur because the same UV rays that cause your skin to tan also break down the proteins you need to prevent fine lines.

What is sun damaged skin and sun spots?

When medics in the cosmetics industry refer to sun damaged skin and sunspots, they’re talking about the uneven skin tone that’ll leave you looking dull and tired before your time. While it might seem a little paradoxical that the same process that makes you glow will also cause you to look dull, it’s an accepted medical fact.

skin sun spots
Skin Damage from the Sun

At the same time, exposing yourself to too many UV rays may permanently alter your blood vessels. As a result, some areas of your face will look redder or darker than others. In other words, you start experiencing pigmentation.

As you get older, the damage the sun has got worse. Sunburned skin will eventually lead to sunspots, which are dark spots that appear on the skin’s surface. Some medics will also refer to them as ‘liver spots.’

sunspot on skin
Close up of a Sunspot

Depending on how pale you are, sunburn may also cause you to experience more freckles. Although many people find them endearing, you might feel the urge to cover them up with makeup.

If you want to prevent blemishes and sunspots altogether, it’s best to avoid sunburns and take some preventative measures that’ll maintain your skin’s even tone.

Can you reverse the effects of sun damaged skin?

The medical community is continually investigating ways to reverse the effects of sun damaged skin. One answer is to make sure wear sunscreen and apply it every ninety minutes, or after you go into the water. While doing this won’t turn back the clock on the sunburns you’ve already encountered, it will prevent further damage.

If you do experience sunburn, applying a cooling agent such as Aloe Vera may reduce the damage. Aloe Vera has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, plus it contains plenty of enzymes that strengthen your cells. As such, if you do encounter sunburn, using Aloe Vera to soothe it may reduce the damage you experience as you get older.

Finally, too much sun exposure will dry your skin out. If you work in an outdoor setting or you’re going on holiday, there’s a couple of ways you can combat this:

  • Exfoliate twice a week to slough away dead skin cells
  • Make sure you stay well hydrated to stop your skin looking dull
  • Eat a diet packed with antioxidants to combat any free radicals that crop up

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Can you prevent sun spots?

There are plenty of ways to prevent sun spots, but we’ll explore the most obvious ones first so you can form a plan that meets your needs:

Wear a sunscreen with a high SPF

Make sure the SPF is 15, at least. If you have fair skin, seriously consider going even higher. To learn more, read here how sunscreen work.

Make sure you up, your hydration game during the summer

Drinking water is essential throughout the year. However, when it’s summertime and the sun is blazing, you need to hydrate on the inside and the outside. Carry a bottle of water around with you and use a moisturiser every morning and evening. By approaching your hydration from both angles, you’ll reduce the likelihood of sunspots forming.

Don’t forget the sunglasses

Sunglasses are about much more than looking amazing and keeping the glare from your eyes. They guard the area around your eyes too, reducing the risk of early wrinkles and sunspots.

Finally, if you are going on holiday, you might want to limit your tanning time. Sure, there are few feelings that beat coming home with an enviable glow. But, if you overdo it, you can look forward to sun damaged skin and sunspots when you get older.

Possible Treatments

If you’re already showing the signs of sun damaged skin or sunspots, there are treatments you can try. Such signs include:

  • Skin that’s looking increasingly tired and dull, forcing you to wear more makeup than usual.
  • Wrinkles that are settling in around your eyes and along your forehead.
  • Skin that’s redder in some areas than others.
  • Dark spots on your skin.
  • An increasing number of freckles.


  • Chemical skin peels for treating sun damaged skin and sunspots

    If you’ve noticed some of the above signs, there are treatments available. Your best option is a chemical skin peel.

    Also known as ‘Glycolic skin peels,’ chemical skin peels are applied to the face in the same way as a face mask. They contain a blend of acids that are safe to use on the skin when administered by a qualified doctor. After a short while, your doctor will remove the peel, revealing the new layer of skin underneath.

    While your Glycolic skin peel is settling in, it removes the layers that show signs of damage. Your body responds to this by producing more collagen and elastin. Unlike when you encounter an uncontrolled trauma, such as a graze, it starts to lay down collagen, elastin, and cells in an organised manner. As a result, the fresh layer of skin that grows afterwards will:

    • Look more youthful and glowing, allowing you to feel fresher and younger.
    • Have fewer wrinkles, as the glycolic skin peel encourages collagen to fill the gaps.
    • Will have a more even tone, as the new layers of skin haven’t encountered sun damage.
    • Will have fewer or no dark spots.

    In order to see the full benefits of a chemical skin peel, you might need more than one treatment. However, the number you need will depend on several factors.

How Can Rutland Aesthetics Help

As a doctor who has gained additional training in cosmetology, Dr Dhesi is passionate about treating sun damaged skin and sunspots. He’ll start your consultation by assessing the extent of the damage, before recommending how many chemical skin peels you need.

Before starting your restoration journey, get in touch with our team. Following a thorough consultation, you’ll be on your way to even skin tone, with fewer signs of sun damage.

*Please note that a medical consultation is required before having the treatment. Book online or call for an appointment.