As temperatures rise and people spend more time in the sun, instagram is flooding with students sporting reddish tiger stripes. The perpetrators? Sunlight and ripped jeans.
Dermatologist and skin cancer specialist Dr. Maselis warns people against staying out in the sun too long. Maselis: “Though getting burned once doesn’t immediately cause cancer, each time your skin burns, it gets sligthly more damaged. That means the health risk increases.”
“One of the worst things people do is stay indoors during the winter, and then exposing themselves to a lot of sun suddenly”, the doctor says. He advises that students try to spend half an hour outside year round, then dial back on the tanning during the holidays. Maselis: “You also need to take into account that you sometimes end up staying outside longer, for instance if you happen to meet a friend when you’re riding your bike or when you’re trying to learn a particularly difficult topic when you’re studying outdoors.”
To avoid serious burns, the dermatologist suggests students seek out shadow whenever possible. Maselis: “Shadow is the strongest protection we have, after that, it’s clothes. When it’s warm, we leave a lot of skin exposed. Consider putting on a breezy cotton shirt anyway to protect your skin.” He also stresses the importance of sunscreen. “It’s the third best protection, but it’s important that you apply it regularly. People often forget to reapply it.” And if you’re wearing ripped jeans, don’t forget to put some sunscreen on that too.