Is There a New Way to Prevent Sun-Damaged Skin?


shutterstock_109248602Along with the changing seasons comes warmer weather and more fun in the sun. Although there are already many effective ways to protect your skin from sun damage, newly introduced sun products may provide an additional means of sun protection to the standard lotions and creams.

Sunscreen Supplementation

Bobby Awadalla, a Greek-born dermatologist, has released the “sun-protective drink” UVO, which is comprised of several types of vitamins that the company claims to help protect skin. This cocktail of vitamins purportedly helps the skin’s natural pigments to absorb UVA and UVB rays. Product directions say to drink UVO 30 minutes before getting into the sun for best results.  The product label also claims the product can soothe skin after over-exposure and that drinking the product daily can aid “beautification” and help repair long-term sun damage.

Similarly, Heliocare is a daily supplement that is taken orally and is recommended as an adjunct solution for sun protection. The active ingredient is an extract derived from ferns that aids sunscreen in keeping the skin young, healthy and free of sun damage.

Sun Protection Best Practices

While it is understandably tempting to consume a refreshing beverage or take a daily capsule instead of applying messy lotions and creams, the ability of these products in protecting the skin has not been evaluated by the FDA, and they are not recommended as the only means of sun protection.

Protecting your skin from UVA and UVB rays is critical to preventing skin cancer and keeping your skin looking young and healthy. Applying sunscreen prior to heading out in the sun, wearing a sunhat and cover-up and forgoing the tanning bed for some sunless self-tanning lotions are all still the best practices for sun protection.

As a final word of caution, it’s best not to solely rely on the latest fad over tried and true methods of sun protection. When in doubt about the best ways to protect your skin, always double check with your board-certified dermatologist.