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When sunlight can ruin your skin procedure

When sunlight can ruin your skin procedure
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Having cosmetic procedures comes with after-care recommendations, with one in particular being more important than most: protection from sunlight. Some procedures require no sun at all allowed on the skin for a while afterwards, since the UV rays can cause complications. The main issue is pigmentation – splotches of discolouration in the treatment areas.

High-risk procedures for sun-induced after-damage include chemical peels, lasers, and light-based procedures – hair removal, blood vessel treatments, pigment lasers, and any form of resurfacing. Low-risk procedures include injectables like muscle relaxants and dermal fillers, though sun protection is still advised.

Your dermatologist will insist upon sunscreen, particularly immediately after your procedure. You will likely be given a tube as part of your aftercare; its importance cannot be understated. The last thing you want is to forget your sunscreen, have a lovely afternoon in the sunshine, and find that your face has developed pigmented patches that you can’t get rid of without a lot more treatments. This is the worst-case scenario, but it can happen if you are not diligent.

How long do I need to be hypervigilant about sun for?

Complete sun protection is advised for at least one week after most cosmetic procedures, but this will be extended if your treatment downtime was longer, or if you had several treatments.

How to be hypervigilant post-treatment?

  • Don’t go into the sunlight where possible (including areas of high reflection such as near the water)
  • Avoid sitting near windows, including in cars
  • When you do head outside (even between the car and house), put SPF50+ sunscreen on at least 15-20 minutes beforehand
  • Wear a wide-brimmed hat
  • If the sun is unavoidable, consider delaying treatments until after summer/sunny periods (like holidays)

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