Air travel is a part of almost everyone’s life today. Whether it is for work or a leisurely holiday, most of us find ourselves comfortably seated at 30,000 feet. But what many of us don’t know is that air travel can cause skin tanning. This has implications for mature skin that we may not be aware of.
UV Radiation is stronger, closer to the sun
At 30,000 feet above sea level, we are closer to the sun’s harmful rays. In fact, the UV levels are approximately twice that of the ground. Sun damage is the number one cause for premature aging. Also, for every additional 3000 feet increase in altitude, there is a 15 percent increase in the intensity of UV radiation.
Flying causes tanning
Being exposed to higher levels of UV radiation causes tanning.Skin tanning is caused when a brown pigment called melanin is produced in the body. There are two kinds of radiations, UVA & UVB. UVB radiation damages the upper layer of the skin and prolonged exposure leads to skin burns. UVA radiations more harmful as they penetrate deeper into the skin and lead to premature aging.
Cabin windows don’t protect you against UVA rays
The cabin windows on an airplane can block UVB rays, but minimally filter the more harmful UVA rays.These result in tanning, spots, premature aging and wrinkles.Studies have shown that an hour of flying with the sun beating down on you is equal to 15-20 minutes on a tanning bed!
Different landscapes have different UV reflection intensity
Think you are safe flying through cloud cover with no sun in sight, or over picturesque snowfields? Not quite. Thick clouds and snow-covered areas can reflect up to 85 percent of UV radiation. So unwittingly, you expose your skin to this harmful radiation for extended periods of time leading to irreparable skin damage.
People often commit the mistake of underestimating the power of sun damage to their skin.As skin matures, it needs more care. Simple steps can aid mature skin to retain its elasticity and stay younger longer. UV protection during a flight is a necessity. Remember to always carry a broad spectrum (UVA+UVB) with minimum SPF of 30, good quality sunscreen.Remember to always love the skin you are in and stay Beauty Eternal.