Sun: 7 good-looking gestures


1. Protect yourself from blue light

With a wavelength between 400 and 500 nanometers, blue light is part of visible light. Why are we talking about it so much now? Because our dear smartphone and computer screens, on which we spend more and more time, emit it, and that’s not very good news for our skin. “It’s the same thing as for UVB: we receive it every day, however their dose becomes really problematic when we expose ourselves on the beach to the summer sun. Every day, we receive blue light through visible light, but, facing screens for hours and at a close distance, we take a much stronger dose,” underlines independent cosmetologist Lionel de Benetti. The harmful effects of this intensive exposure have been measured via lab tests on cell cultures. “This light at 470 nanometers creates oxidative stress that alters cell membranes and leads to degeneration of the cell’s metabolism,” says the scientist. Clarins research has also shown that blue light decreases the presence of two essential defense enzymes: the antioxidant GSR enzyme decreases by 68% and the detoxifying GSTM1 enzyme decreases by 54%. The result on the skin is an acceleration of aging, in particular the appearance of spots that blur the evenness of the complexion. To protect against this, the UV and anti-visible light sunscreen option is not necessarily the best option on a daily basis: wearing a chemical filter all year round is not necessarily necessary. “On the other hand, notes Lionel de Benetti, studies have shown that an antioxidant cocktail, in particular based on niacinamide (vitamin B3), tocopherol (vitamin E) and vitamin C could protect the skin from cell damage caused by this radiation. » Slipping a serum or a combination of complementary serums under your daily care is a good way to preserve your skin, as is the application of make-up with protective active ingredients. And as soon as the sun shines on sunny days, you put on your city screen, with anti-UV filtration, anti-blue light and, ideally, an anti-pollution action.

2. Shield pollution

Like solar radiation, it causes inflammation and oxidative stress. Cell metabolism is damaged, which impacts the quality and radiance of the skin. It was also discovered that the presence of heavy metals in atmospheric pollutants could participate in the creation of stains. The niacinamide, tocopherol, vitamin C cocktail is also of interest here, since it reinforces the self-defense capacities of the skin. “Pollution particles pose an additional problem, that of unbalancing the skin microbiome,” underlines Lionel de Benetti. Beneficial bacteria for the skin are broken down, leaving room for non-beneficial germs to grow. In order to prevent this phenomenon, we rely on products with prebiotics, which allow the good bacteria to resist. And, as soon as you plan to spend time outdoors (cycling, terrace therapy, walking or running in the park, etc.), you make sure to apply protective makeup and/or your city screen.

3. Adopt a high index in summer

When exposed to the sun, protection is essential. It’s a question of health, because UV rays, as we know, are harmful to the skin and responsible, among other things, for an acceleration of ageing. We therefore bet, as much as possible, on an index of 50, we apply a generous quantity of cream without fear of a whitening effect – the new formulations are now often invisible –, and we renew the dose very regularly during the day (ideally every two hours) during exposure and after each swim.

4. Select broad-spectrum sunscreens, but not only

To offer maximum protection to the skin, it is essential that the products filter or reflect UVB, UVA but also long UVA, which penetrate deep into the skin, altering its structure and its immune system. A good sunscreen should also provide strong antioxidant action, as oxidation is one of the major consequences of sun exposure. At Clarins, this protection, which supports that of sunscreens, is provided by a blend of six plant extracts. And if you have opted for a “simpler” sunscreen formula, you can always reinforce the shield effect by slipping a serum with targeted antioxidant molecules underneath, the famous trio of vitamins B3, C and E.

5. Choose the right textures

What is the best protective product? It’s the one you want to apply and reapply. If it stays in the bag, it is of no interest: “We work on various sensorialities to adapt to different needs, explains Marie-Hélène Lair, director of responsible innovation at Clarins. For example, athletes and men prefer non-greasy textures that are resistant to water and perspiration, while fans of idleness want soft textures that are pleasant to apply. To develop our different textures, we have a lab dedicated to sensory analysis. A panel of experts, trained regularly, significantly evaluates the sensory parameters of our formulas. And this is how you can opt for sprays, fluids, dry-touch creams, even hybrid textures such as gel-in-oil, oil-in-mist… We are also working hard on spreading the product to ensure perfect homogenization of the sunscreen molecules on the skin and good stability over time of the protective film,” adds Marie-Hélène Lair. Just as much as the quantity of cream applied, it is the uniformity of the film and the absence of “holes” which guarantee solid protection.

6. Consider high-dose hydration

This is an important factor in the idea of ​​protection, because it makes it possible to reinforce the barrier effect of the skin and thus to have better resistance to aggressors. However, in summer, in addition to sun exposure, swimming accelerates skin dehydration. “NMFs, the ‘natural moisturizing factors’ which bind water coming from the dermis like sponges, are partly dissolved by water”, explains Lionel de Benetti. The parade? Do not neglect the use of moisturizing products, in the evening as after-sun, on the face and body, and in the morning as a serum. Molecules to track: fragmented or low molecular weight hyaluronic acid, the only forms capable of penetrating deep into the skin, and active ingredients such as filaggrin which stimulate the production of natural NMFs.

7. Cheating with tinted or self-tanning products

To avoid altering the freshness of your skin by intensive exposure and to look good when you come out pale in winter, cheating is recommended. Two options arise. The self-tanner, for the face as the body, today without risk of error, in particular when one adopts the drops to add to a moisturizer. For those who want ephemeral on the face, sun powder remains a very good option, provided you have a light hand. The make-up artist Gucci Westman explains her method to us: “I recommend a matte powder, and not iridescent, to create a very natural and authentic sunburn effect. Using a brush, sweep the powder in a horizontal motion over the cheeks, eyelids, forehead and temples: wherever the sun is likely to strike naturally. You can add a veil on the neck and collarbones to have a more harmonious rendering with the face. “For the choice of shade, we stay close to your skin tone: no question of opting for a dark brown tone when you have fair skin. Today, the variety of shades on offer allows everyone to find their custom fake tan.

Should we be afraid of chemical filters?

Chemical filters are regularly suspected of being harmful to health, notably via an endocrine disruption effect. What is it really? Françoise Audebert, from the French Federation of Beauty Companies (Febea), enlightens us: “At the end of 2020 and in 2021, the Scientific Committee for Consumer Health (independent), showed that benzophenone-3 and octocrylene filters were safe at the concentration levels used in cosmetics. Other molecules are still being analyzed, but these are filters that are no longer used. All of them also pass drastic checks in extreme conditions of use. “We maximize the risk by evaluating the harmlessness for daily use all year round, which is not the reality of the use of sunscreens, which are rather seasonal”, underlines Françoise Audebert. Between exposing your skin to UV or filters, you should not even hesitate, the dangers of UV are clearly proven.

Sunglasses and the Sea, reconciliation?

In recent years, sunscreens have been accused of polluting the seas and harming the health of corals. “The subject is complex, because the studies that have set fire to the powder are in reality unreliable, with in particular concentrations of filters that have nothing to do with those present in the environment. We do not know today with complete certainty if sunscreen products impact corals and in what way,” underlines Françoise Audebert, scientific and regulatory adviser to Febea (Federation of Beauty Companies). The sector is carrying out numerous studies to see things more clearly, and the labs are testing their formulas by partnering with marine biology laboratories or oceanographic research centers. This is the attitude of Clarins in particular. “A lot of work has also been done on the biodegradability of the formulas”, explains Marie-Hélène Lair, director of responsible innovation. The goal: to leave no trace of our swimming in the water of the seas and oceans.

photo credit: Arno Cauchois

Our sunny selection

By Lauriane Seigner

1. TAILORED. ADD A FEW DROPS TO YOUR FACE OR BODY TREATMENTS AND, IN FOUR TO EIGHT HOURS, THE TAN IS RISE. SELF-TANNING DROPS, ST. TROPEZ, 30 ML, €36. 2. SUNBURN. AN ULTRA-FINE AND FUSIONAL POWDER, AVAILABLE IN TWO INTENSITIES, TO BROWN THE COMPLEXION WITH AN EXCEPTIONAL NATURAL. AS A BONUS, IT CONTAINS CARE INGREDIENTS. BEAUTY BUTTER POWDER BRONZER, WESTMAN ATELIER, €72.90. 3. NOMAD. IN CASE OF EXTREME SUN, A STICK TO HAVE IN YOUR POCKET TO PROTECT EXPOSED AREAS (FACE, EARS, NECK…). SUN STICK SPF 50, DEW, 12 ML, €12.90. 4. THE ALLY OF SUMMER DAYS. A GLOBAL SHIELD TO FIGHT AGAINST UVA AND UVB, BLUE LIGHT, POLLUTING PARTICLES… BUT ALSO INDOOR POLLUTION AND POLLEN. UV PLUS [5P] ANTI-POLLUTION, CLARINS, 30 ML, €44. 5. ULTRA-SENSORY. A SUSPENSION OF OIL DROPS IN AN AQUEOUS GEL, WHICH CAN BE APPLIED ON WET SKIN EVENLY AND WITHOUT TRACING. SUN BODY GEL-IN-OIL SPF 50, CLARINS, 150 ML, €30. 6. SOFT. TO SLIP UNDER ITS CREAMS, A NON-GREASY FLUID THAT FILL UP WITH HYDRATION WHILE REINFORCING ANTIOXIDANT DEFENSES AND SOOTHING IRRITATIONS LINKED TO ATTACKS. ESSENCE 27, COSMETIC 27, 50 ML, €95.



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