Derm DMs: How Can I Protect My Scars From Sun Damage?
We all know how essential it is to wear sunscreen in order to protect our skin from sun damage. This is especially important if you’re dealing with scarred skin. “Just as skin typically gets darker, so can scars on your body because of UV radiation,” says New York City-based board-certified dermatologist and Skincare.com consultant Dr. Hadley King. Below, she explains what types of scars are more susceptible to UV damage and how to prevent their appearance from getting darker in the sun.
What Happens to Scars When They Are Exposed to the Sun?
Just as skin typically gets darker in the sun, so can scars on your body. While you should cover up and apply SPF 30 or higher to any area exposed to the sun, you should especially avoid sun exposure on new scars. “Freshly healing scars, particularly thinner ones, can be more susceptible to sun damage,” says Dr. King.
How to Potentially Prevent Scars From Getting a Darker Appearance in the Sun
First and foremost, protection from the sun is key. Dr. King recommends covering the scarred area, but if that’s not possible use a sunscreen with a high SPF like the La Roche-Posay Anthelios Melt-In Milk Sunscreen SPF 60. Apply a generous amount to the scar and completely rub it in.
While these methods can assist in preventing your scars from getting darker, they won’t be able to minimize the appearance of them. To help with the look of your scar, try the SkinCeuticals Advanced Scar Control, which has been clinically shown to help improve the appearance of new scars. We recommend applying this daily before sunscreen so you have multiple forms of scar protection.
Design: Hannah Packer