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Do You Know the Difference Between UVB and UVA Rays?

By June 10, 2010March 8th, 2011Blog, Laser Hair Removal

Do you know the difference between UVB and UVA rays?  UVB rays are considered the “tanning ray”  and are strongest in the summer when the earth rotates closest to the sun.  This ray will penetrate the epidermis, which is the top layer of our skin, and has about the same thickness of a silk scarf.  UVB rays stimulate the melanocyte cell to produce more melanin, which is the pigment in our skin.

UVA , often regarded as the “safe” ray, is now known to be even more harmful than UVB rays because UVA rays are the same strength regardless of the time of year. It doesn’t matter how close or how far the sun is.  These rays go through clothing, car and office windows and hats. So, a good sunscreen of SPF 30 or greater with UVA, UVB protection should always be used.  You should apply your sunscreen 20 minutes before going into the sun.

Various types of UV rays

Courtesy of

Because sunlight regulates our biological clock and provides essential vitamin D, common sense should be used in determining amount of sun exposure.  As far as laser hair removal is concerned, I have to take into consideration the amount of sun exposure you have had to determine if you can qualify for treatment.  So if you are interested in continuing laser treatments this summer, please be sure to avoid the sun as much as you can and use SPF 30 or greater.  Also, sunscreens with high amounts of zinc oxide are going to be higher quality, and a better protector.

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