#sp “I can’t believe we used to…” There’s a lot that could end this sentence, but right now I’m thinking about baby oil. I can’t believe we used to slather ourselves with baby oil to go bake in the sun – and then some of us even added iodine to the baby oil for a “deeper” tan! Did you do this growing up?

While that baby oil may have worked to brown (or burn, ha!) in the moment, I have no doubt that it is now putting a “wrinkle” (or several!) into how we feel today! The sun’s powerful rays are the main cause (up to 80%) behind skin aging – including wrinkles, brown spots, loss of elasticity, spider veins, etc.

The good news is the damage done can be countered – but it does take work. As you can probably imagine, there are so many different options: lotions, prescription retinoids, lasers, and needles. All of these treatments have different levels of effectiveness, risks, and expenses. A dermatologist or esthetician can advise what may be the best course of action for your specific skin concerns. When in doubt, I always recommend starting with something simple, like regular Vitamin E oil, and then going from there.

The other way to stop photoaging in its tracks is to prevent more damage from happening. An SPF is a great start and combining it with sun-protective clothing with a high UPF is even better. The highest UPF you can get is 50, which means only 2% of UV rays are passed through the garment, wet or dry. It can be hard to find clothing with this level of technology while still looking fashionable, which is why I’m telling you about Coolibar. All of their items, for the whole family – everything from hats, shirts, swimwear, pants, gloves, etc. – are guaranteed to have a UPF of 50+, while still looking cute!

So while we may not be able to fully “erase” the damage done by things like using baby oil to tan (if only we knew better!) there’s a lot we can do now to add layers of protection as we continue to soak up the sun and keep up with our busy lifestyles.