LONDON — Celebrity skincare expert Scott McGlynn suggests that preparing your skin for sun exposure begins with drinking green tea. The 35-year-old claims that it can help prevent sunburn, citing a study which highlights the drink’s abundant source of plant polyphenols that protect the skin.
The 2012 report, “Protective Mechanisms of Green Tea Polyphenols in Skin,” looked at the ingredients in green tea and how well they block out the damage resulting from exposure to ultraviolet light (UVR).
“GTPPs (green tea polyphenols) have important antioxidant, immunomodulatory, and photoprotective functions. Their ability to modulate critical biochemical functions through topical and oral formulations makes GTPPs a promising candidate for chemoprevention and treatment of disease,” the researchers write in the journal Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity.
As the host of Celebrity Skin Talk, McGlynn is particularly attentive to his skin in hot weather and advises people not to forget their SPF sunscreen during upcoming heatwaves. In an online video post, he recommends spending only an hour in the Sun and moisturizing afterward. Scott enjoys using affordable products from budget supermarkets like Lidl and Aldi, with some items costing as little as $4.
“Instead of normal tea, have a green tea before you go in the Sun. It helps cool you and gets you ready for the Sun,” McGlynn says.
Scroll down to see 3 reasons why UV light is bad for your health
Being fair-skinned, Scott wears SPF 50 because he “burns like crazy” and recommends using SPF 30 or higher on the body. He also suggests wearing a shirt or staying under an umbrella while outdoors to protect the skin. The 35-year-old warns that people need to be just as cautious with their skin during a local heatwave as they would on a sunny vacation abroad.
“Because it’s British sun, people don’t see it as concerning. At the end of the day, it’s the Sun,” the skincare expert explains.
He emphasizes the importance of using SPF in addition to foundation and notes that sun damage can lead to premature age spots. After a day in the Sun, Scott also stresses the importance of moisturizing to hydrate the skin.
“When you’re finished in the Sun, moisturize the body everywhere. People forget about the chest down. You just need a thick moisturizer. It could cost $3 from Lidl, Aldi, or Boots. The Sun dries our skin out. After a bath or shower, when your body is still a bit damp, apply moisturizer then.”
Scott also recommends cleansing twice to remove SPF, using a pre-cleanser to strip away the SPF before cleansing again. He uses Dove soap, which costs about $0.65, for his body before using shower gel but warns against using soap on the face as it can be drying.
Having struggled with acne and spending his wages on luxury skincare products that “didn’t work,” Scott appreciates budget-friendly options.
“It’s not about the price tag,” the 35-year-old asserts.
Why is UV light harmful to humans?
Ultraviolet (UV) light is harmful to humans because it can cause damage to the skin, eyes, and immune system. UV light is a form of electromagnetic radiation with a wavelength shorter than visible light but longer than X-rays. It is divided into three types: UVA, UVB, and UVC.
- Skin damage: Prolonged exposure to UV light, particularly UVA and UVB, can lead to various skin issues, including sunburn, premature aging, and skin cancer. UVA penetrates deeper into the skin, contributing to aging and wrinkles, while UVB is the primary cause of sunburn. Both types can damage the DNA in skin cells, increasing the risk of skin cancer.
- Eye damage: UV radiation can also harm the eyes, leading to conditions like photokeratitis (a painful inflammation of the cornea), cataracts (clouding of the eye’s lens), and macular degeneration (damage to the retina that can cause vision loss). It is essential to wear sunglasses with proper UV protection to shield your eyes from these risks.
- Immune system suppression: Exposure to UV light can suppress the immune system, making it harder for the body to fight off infections and illnesses. This suppression occurs because UV radiation can alter the activity and distribution of immune cells in the skin, reducing the body’s ability to defend itself.
South West News Service writer Emma Dunn contributed to this report.