Thailand is sunny year-round and as lovely as the warm weather and blue skies can be, it also means you need to be extra cautious about sun protection and skin care.
Always wears sunscreen that is SPF 30 or higher.
Sunscreen with SPF 30 offers protection against 97 percent of UV rays. Interestingly, the difference between higher SPF sunblock is minimal and can mostly be chalked up to marketing. For example, SPF 50 sunblock offers 98 percent protection.
Remember that sunblock isn’t just for sunny days.
The fact that you can’t see the sun doesn’t mean that your body isn’t being exposed to harmful UV rays. If you plan to be outside for prolonged periods, wear sunblock, especially on your face. Not only will this lower your risk of skin cancer, but it will also reduce signs of aging. All those fancy creams at the department store are no match for the power of good, consistently applied sunblock.
Reapply, reapply, reapply.
Putting on sunscreen in the morning doesn’t mean that you’re covered for the entire day. Especially during a beach day, remember to reapply every hour.
Take extra precaution when swimming.
You may not feel the sun while splashing around in the waves of the Andaman Sea off of Phuket, but that doesn’t mean that they aren’t there or you aren’t affected. Because of its reflective properties, the water actually amplifies solar rays. Be sure to wear waterproof sunscreen while swimming.
Stay indoors or in the shade around noon.
The sun in Thailand is harsh around midday. In order to avoid burning, it’s sometimes best to wait these scorching hours out.
Wear a hat.
A wide-brimmed hat is a simple, low-tech, highly effective way of keeping those UV rays off of your face. Even if you’re wearing sunscreen, pack a hat in your beach bag.
Get regular checkups.
Do you have a mole on your arm that wasn’t there before? An oddly colored spot that just showed up one day. It might be nothing, but it’s always better to err on the side of caution. Make sure you talk to a doctor or a dermatologist if you have any doubts. When it’s detected early, Skin cancer is one of the most easily curable forms of cancer.