July 27, 2023

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I feel like we all have obsessions. We all have something that we are extremely passionate about. We all have something that can fuel something inside you that you never thought possible. I have a few of those obsessions. But a really big one, as some would say, is my obsession with sunscreen. I am the girl who always has sunscreen and always asks you if you have your sunscreen on. Education on sunscreen is so important to me. I have to tell you the things I’ve seen, the things I’ve heard and the things I’ve learned in my many years of experience as an Esthetician. 

Helping to educate my clients on why sunscreen is so important on a daily basis is an obsession that I am okay with having. Every person that I can save from sun damage or skin cancer then I have done my job. So to my family, friends and even strangers who have come into contact with me, I don’t feel bad for educating you on sunscreen. I feel like I am doing my job as an Esthetician and as an educator of this community. Yes, I am very passionate about sunscreen, Yes, I get on peoples nerves about my sunscreen obsession, Yes, I will ask you (even if I don’t know you) if you are wearing sunscreen, Yes, I will scold you if you burn your skin and tell me that you didn’t apply sunscreen all day long. Yes, I will be that “mean” girl who chases you with a sunscreen bottle, but please know that it is my duty, it is my job and it definitely is my PASSION! 

The UV rays are so strong that they can penetrate through clouds and fog. So just because it’s a cloudy or a snowy day, that does not mean that sunscreen shouldn’t be worn. Your skin is still being damaged by the B rays, which are the Burning rays. Skiing in the high country is something that I feel like I have to educate sunscreen on the most. The UV rays will reflect off the snow and cause sun damage to your skin. Have you ever seen that person who has the perfect goggle mark? That is sun damage. Living in Colorado, We love being outside, but that doesn’t mean that you need to forget your sunscreen. Living in Colorado, we are closer to the sun. We are hiking and skiing at altitudes up to 14,000 feet. Your skin is now super exposed under these harsh conditions and altitudes. So it is important to always remember your sunscreen and of course drinking plenty of water. 

I have seen severe sun damage.I have seen women and men be very self conscious of their sun damage. Sun damage is darkening of the skin. This is caused by harmful UV rays. It’s an unevenness of the skin. This is sometimes a condition that is hard to conceal for women, even with makeup. I have seen the skin’s elasticity begin to loosen because of over exposure to the sun. I have seen the “leathery” effects of their skin that some men and women have. I have seen dark spots on the face, neck and hands. And I have seen the effects that this has had on my men and women clients.

I have heard my clients say that they are trying to reverse the damage from years ago, before we really knew the effects of the sun. During this time, these men and women had the goal to be as dark as they possibly could. I’ve had clients tell me that they used to lay on the roof with baby oil on their body. As an Esthetician, You should hear my insides screaming when I am told this. But my job is to help them. My job is to reverse the effects that they did to their skin. My job is to educate them on proper protection for years to come. 

I recently had a client who I have seen for several months for regular Facials and leg waxes. Every four weeks, I would get to the back of her legs and always notice this one spot that was very dark in color. It concerned me. I would always express my concern to her and tell her that it was imperative that she see a Dermatologist. Every time she came back in, my first question to her would be, “did you schedule an appointment for a Dermatologist”? After several of these times, she finally said, Yes, that she had gone to see a Dermatologist. She said the one on her leg was fine, but they found one on her arm that they wanted to send off. She waited 3 weeks and went back. The next time I saw her, of course, I had to ask what was going on. They had removed it, and it had come back as Melanoma. She was surprised with my shock and seemed to not understand that Melanoma is the deadliest form of skin cancer! She told me that she would have never gone had I not seen the one her leg, which turned out to be nothing, but it got her to the Dermatologist. 

Why am I so passionate you ask, why do I care so much?? Potentially saving a life is huge to me. It’s the whole reason I do what I do. It’s the whole reason I love my passion. 

So yes, I may be strict when it comes to sunscreen but please know that it is because I care about your skin. Your skin is truly my passion. 

There is a reason that I am known as the “Sunscreen Queen”! I want you to protect your skin, I want to help educate you on how best to protect your skin and make you aware of the potential damage that you are causing to your skin. 

For my women clients, the sunscreen that is in your makeup is NOT ENOUGH sunscreen. You still need to apply an SPF of 30 or more under your makeup every day. 

For my male clients, don’t forget to apply sunscreen SPF of 30 or more daily to your face, neck, ears and head.  Men over 50 are more likely to become diagnosed with Melanoma skin cancer. Protect the largest organ of your body. 

Have you seen the picture of the truck driver who never wore sunscreen and on the left side of his face (the side always exposed to the sun) it looked at least 20 years older than the right side of his face?? Google it….The results will shock you. 

Sunscreen is important. Sunscreen will help to keep your skin younger looking, Sunscreen will protect you from skin cancer. Yes, I may get made fun of for chasing people around with sunscreen (I don’t really chase them!) I may get made fun of for constantly being the “Mother of the Group”,  I may be the girl who is constantly speaking of the importance of sunscreen to all I come into contact with. But just know, I may be the girl who saves at least one human life from my education, my passion for skin care and my concern for human well being and for that, I am thankful. I don’t know who you are, but seriously PUT YOUR SUNSCREEN ON!! 

About the Author Ansley Reese

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