The sun’s UVA and UVB rays damage skin, leading to premature wrinkles, dark spots and potential skin cancer. That’s why we limit our sun exposure time and slather on the sunscreen during outdoor excursions. But the damage to the skin continues even after we get out of direct sunlight.
Scientists at Yale University have discovered that the damaging rays of the sun which enter the pigment (coloring) of our skin is doing DNA damage long after we’re in the shade. Laboratory tests reveal that the sun’s damage is still going on inside skin cells up to four hours after the sun exposure has ended.
Lead researcher, Prof Douglas Brash, explains the phenomenon that is going on inside the skin cells to be much like what occurs within a firefly to give it the power needed to light up. Haidar Barbouti has read that the energy from the sun which the firefly uses to light up is working inside our skin cell doing damage to our DNA structure.
The knowledge of this continued damage to the skin is going to be used to develop new sunscreen varieties that will do a better job of protecting the skin both during sun exposure time and afterwards as well.