Health & Wellness

Here Comes the Sun! Florham Park Native Shares Skin-Saving Tips


FLORHAM PARK, NJ - Hello Sunshine! In just a few weeks, you will be headed to the pool, the lake or as we say in NJ, "down the shore"! Have you thought about sunscreen? We should all be wearing it everyday but, we tend to put more emphasis on it during the summer months when we spend more time out in the sun and may even be tanning. As an esthetician, I teach people how to protect themselves from damage that is avoidable, but unfortunately, I spend most of my time correcting the damage that has already occurred.

Physical or Chemical Sunscreen

There are so many great choices out there for sunscreens. I personally recommend buying a higher quality, non-comedogenic type for your face (won't clog your pores) and something more cost effective for your entire body. Sunscreens are broken down into two categories; Physical sunscreens and Chemical sunscreens. Both varieties are effective, I believe it really comes down to preference. I suggest you try a couple and see what you like. Physical sunscreens are made with Zinc Oxide or Titanium Dioxide; they block the sun from reflecting ultraviolet rays away from the skin, they physically block your skin from UVA and UVB rays. Chemical sunscreens are made of carbon compounds that absorb ultraviolet rays so that they don't enter your skin. Common ingredients in chemical sunscreens are oxybenzone or octinoxate. When choosing a SPF, make sure to choose 30 to 50. I personally use 30 on my face everyday and 50 if I'm going to be directly in the sun.

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Makeup with SPF

There are so many great BB Creams available with SPF; I use Jane Iredale, Glowtime, it's an SPF 30. Some people like using a mineral powder for their daily make-up; Jane Iredale also has a Pressed Base and Loose Powder that both have a SPF 30. My favorite facial sunscreen is SkinCeuticals Physical Matte UV Defense SPF 50 and for my body I love SkinCeuticals Sport UV Defense SPF 50. In the organic category, I love Godess Garden Organic; they have an entire line of amazing organic SPF products. I also love Coola Suncare; they have SPF sprays that are scented one is Guava/ Mango!!! Coola has traditional and organic lines and they offer varieties for babies and adults. I have tried so many brands, it took me some time to find my favorites. I recommend these products everyday to my clients and I feel like they agree that these products are some of the best that are offered.

Don't bother buying SPF that is higher than 50 because the highest possible protection is really only 50. And a note for those with sensitive skin, you will probably do better with a Physical Sunscreen. Chemical Sunscreens have a higher incidence of allergic reactions than Physical Sunscreens. Sunscreens are the only cosmetics or health and beauty products that have to be regulated by the FDA. You can feel more confident that a SPF will deliver the protection you need because the manufacturing is so tightly monitored and regulated.

Cancer Prevention

The driving force behind sunscreen and The FDA is Cancer Prevention. One in five Americans will develop skin cancer by the time they are 65...we need to protect ourselves. One person in The US dies of Melanoma every 54 minutes. 86% of Melanoma is caused by the sun...we need to protect ourselves. A person's risk for melanoma doubles if they have had five or more sunburns...we need to protect ourselves.

As if cancer were not enough...the sun causes so much more damage. The sun causes premature aging, sagging of the skin and hyper-pigmentation. 72% of patients who visit a dermatologist are concerned about the spots on their face; those spots are sun damage. It takes 10 years for the damage you receive today to produce spots that appear on the surface of your skin. As we age, more and more spots appear and they are usually accompanied by irregular, skin cell growths called Actinic Keratosis. Actinic Keratisis offen leads to skin cancer.

Applying sunscreen is a small act that you will be grateful you took as you begin to age.


Leslie Joy Dammer was born and raised in Florham Park, NJ. She is a Licensed Esthetician and the owner of SkinLIV in Newport Beach, California.

Do you have any skincare questions, comments, concerns....please email Looking for more skin cancer info go to I personally recommend that all of my clients see a dermatologist once a year for a skin check. Early detection promotes the best outcomes and cure rates. I also make additional recommendations for a skin care regimen that promotes deeper skin protection and health. Change your skin. Change your life. ~Leslie

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