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Photoageing is premature ageing of the skin due to repeated and excessive exposure to ultraviolet radiation (UV rays). It is extremely prevalent in Australia, due to the harsh climate and outdoor lifestyle. Photoageing can be characterised by the following visible signs of skin ageing:

  • Fine lines and wrinkles
  • Uneven skin tone or skin dullness and coarse skin texture
  • Loss of skin firmness or elasticity
  • Facial redness
  • Hyperpigmentation
Signs of premature ageing

Sun protection FAQS

  • The sun sends out different types of radiation that reach the earth –visible light that is seen as sunlight, infrared radiation which can be felt as heat and ultraviolet radiation (UVR), that we can’t see. Ultraviolet radiation can be classified as UVA, UVB, or UVC. The ozone layer absorbs some, but not all, of these types of UV radiation. UVA rays account for up to 95% of the UV radiationreachingtheearth’ssurface,andcanpenetratethrough clouds and glass. These UVA rays play a major part in photodamage and skin ageing, while UVB rays are the main cause of skin reddening and sunburn, damage which can lead to premature skin ageing.

     Both UVA and UVB rays have the potential to cause skin cancers. Skin cancer is a disease of the body's skin cells and occurs when skin cells are damaged by UV radiation penetrating the skin. UV damages skin cell DNA, causing cells to mutate and grow abnormally. If these mutant cells are not destroyed through the body’s own processes or other means, they will continue to develop into skin cancers.

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    Sun Protection Factor (SPF) is a measure of a sunscreen’s ability to prevent UV radiation from damaging the skin. SPF measures the amount of UVB radiation transmitted to the skin after sunscreen has been applied, compared to the amount of UVB transmitted to the skin without sunscreen. A sunscreen with an SPF of 30 provides 30 times more protection than if not wearing a sunscreen. A sunscreen with an SPF of 50 provides 50 times more protection than if not wearing a sunscreen.

  • Sunscreens work by absorbing most of the UV rays, and by also reflecting those UV rays away from your skin.


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  • People often confuse heat and UV radiation. When the outside temperature is cool it does not necessarily mean a less UVR. The ‘UV Index’ was developed by the World Health Organisation (WHO) to provide a consistent and international measure of the sun’s UVR strength. This is to ensure that everyone can be aware of when most to avoid the sun or to use extra protection measures.

  • Factors that affect UV levels

    The UV Index measures the strength of UVR and uses a numerical scale of 1 to 11+ to rate the strength of the sun’s UV rays. According to the scale, the higher the UV index level, the greater the strength of the sun’s UV rays, and the less time it takes for skin damage to occur – In Australia, the Cancer Council recommends sun protection be used if the UV index is 3 or above. If the UV index is forecast to reach 3 or above, the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) will issue a SunSmart UV alert. It can be found on the BOM website and the SunSmart app, as well as in all daily newspapers, news websites and mobile sites.

    Even with a low UV index of 2 or less, UVA rays are still present. Therefore, it is still recommended to use a broad spectrum sunscreen to prevent photodamage and premature ageing.

    Factors that affect UV levels
  • There are many misconceptions about how much and how often we need to apply sunscreen. Even when we are indoors, in the office, or running daily errands, a minimum of SPF 30 sunscreen should be applied on a daily basis after cleansing. This is because UVA rays play a major long-term term premature skin ageing and can even initiate the development of skin cancers. When outdoors, just three minutes without proper SPF protection is enough to cause UV damage. Sunscreen should be applied at least 20 minutes before going outdoors and reapplied every two hours, or immediately after swimming or working up a sweat. A minimum of 5ml (approximately one teaspoon) of sunscreen should be applied to each limb, plus the face, and ears.

When Science meets suncare

SunActive SPF 50

SunActive SPF 50+ range

The SunActive SPF 50+ range was formulated in Australia to provide high sun protection against one of the harshest world’s harshest climates. Ultraceuticals sunscreens are formulated, tested and manufactured in accordance with TGA guidelines.

Powerful Antioxidant Complex

The SunActive range contains a powerful antioxidant complex. Studies have shown that ingredients such as caffeine and Ferulic Acid are helpful in protecting against UV-induced skin damage.2,3,4

4 Hour Water Resistant

The research chemists at Ultraceuticals have engineered a film that has been tested to be four hours water resistant. 

Touch-Dry Technology

Features fast absorbing, touch-dry technology for a shine-free, velvet finish.

Ideal for the Whole Family

The SunActive range does not contain parabens, synthetic dyes or fragrances or benzophenone and can be used on adults and children alike.

References:

1) AS/NZS 2604: 2012 'very high'. 
2) Heffernan, TP. Kawasumi, M. Blasina, A. Anderes, K. Conney, AH. Nghiem, P 2009, ‘ATR-Chk1 pathway inhibition promotes apoptosis after UV treatment in primary human keratinocytes: potential basis for the UV protective effects of caffeine’. The Journal of Investigative Dermatology, vol.129 pp. 1805-1815.
3) Koo, SW. Hirakawa, S. Fujii, S. Kawasumi, M. Nghiem, P 2007, ‘Protection from photodamage by topical application of caffeine after ultraviolet irradiation’. British Journal of Dermatology, vol. 156 pp. 957-964. 
4) Lee, YS 2005, ‘Role of NADPH oxidase-mediated generation of reactive oxygen species in the mechanism of apoptosis induced by phenolic acids in HepG2 human hepatoma cells’. Archives of Pharmacal Research, vol. 28 pp. 1183-1189.

Complete spectrum sunscreen ingredients

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The development of complete spectrum sunscreen ingredients have been the latest innovations in sunscreen research. These ingredients absorb UV rays across the entire spectrum of UVA and UVB to provide a very high level of sun protection. One of the requirements for a broad spectrum sunscreen is for 90% of UVR rays to be absorbed up to 370 nanometres (nm). Complete spectrum sunscreen ingredients protect across the entire UVA spectrum up to 400nm.

Shop products designed to protect against UV damage

Whether your need everyday UV protection, or very high SPF coverage for an outdoor lifestyle, our award-winning suncare range has the solution.

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