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Treatments that Require Limited Exposure to the Sun


Treatments that Require Limited Exposure to the Sun

Getting your daily dose of sunshine comes with a lot of benefits. It replenishes your body’s vitamin D supply, an essential nutrient that boosts the immune system and puts you in a sunny disposition, too.

On the other hand, it also has its downsides. In this article, we’ll discuss photosensitivity and what it does to your skin in particular, and known photosensitive cosmetic treatments that warn against direct UV light exposure to achieve the best results.

Let’s delve right in!

What Is Photosensitivity?

Woman with sunburn on cheeks

Photosensitivity is a heightened allergic reaction when your skin is exposed to UV light, whether naturally through sunlight or from a tanning bed. It manifests as itchy and red sunburn or skin rash (photodermatosis), which can also develop to eczematous (photodermatitis).

There are two types of photosensitivity reactions.

Phototoxic Reaction

It is triggered by a specific ingredient in a drug or skincare product or treatment administered either orally or topically. A phototoxic reaction can occur within minutes of exposure to UV rays, with symptoms only appearing on the parts of the skin that were exposed.

Photoallergic Reaction

It is caused by drugs, products, or treatment directly applied to the skin. It stimulates a cascade of an antibody attack that views sun exposure as a threat. Symptoms of this type of photosensitivity are much more severe and involve inflamed rashes, blisters, angry red bumps, and skin lesions that start days after treatment and UV exposure.

Products That Puts You At Risk to Photosensitivity

Close up shot of a skincare cream being applied to the skin

Several factors can make you photosensitive. Photosensitizers frequently cause photosensitivity reactions in drugs and skincare products.

The Skin Cancer Foundation has an extensive list of topical and oral medications connected to photosensitivity. The most notorious ones include certain types of:

  • Antibiotics (Ciprofloxacin, Co-Trimoxazole, Dapsone, and Tetracycline)
  • Antifungals (Griseofulvin)
  • DMARD (Hydroxychloroquine)
  • Diuretic (Furosemide)
  • Herbal Antidepressant (St. John’s Wort)
  • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or NSAIDs (Ibuprofen, Naproxen, Ketoprofen)
  • Antineoplastic (Fluorouracil)
  • Cholesterol-lowering drugs like statins
  • Retinoid (Tazarotene and Tretinoin)

Health Conditions Linked to Photosensitivity

Woman with hyperpigmentation on the face

There’s a long list of illnesses that predisposes you to hypersensitivity to harmful ultraviolet light. Exposure to the sun can exacerbate the existing symptoms of these diseases, which are commonly autoimmune diseases or inherited genetic disorders. Here are some examples.

  • Lupus
  • Psoriasis
  • Rosacea
  • Solar Urticaria
  • Pellagra
  • Chronic Actinic Dermatitis
  • Bloom Syndrome
  • Darier’s Disease

Photosensitive Cosmetic Treatments

If you noticed, the majority of the post-treatment care guidelines would warn against going outdoors without wearing sunscreen or covering the treatment site with protective clothing or a hat, in the case of the facial area. It’s because some cosmetic procedures can make your skin vulnerable to harsh ultraviolet rays and can lead to painful and unpleasant side effects.

Here’s a complete rundown of photosensitive cosmetic treatments.

Laser Hair Removal

Whatever hair removal technique you’re using, it puts your skin at risk to photosensitivity. It does not matter whether you are waxing, applying creams, or going through laser or electrolysis treatment to achieve flawless and hair-free skin. The hair follicles and the surrounding skin area are still raw and would be too sensitive to the scorching heat of the sun.We highly recommend that you cover up or skip any outdoor activity that can put you in a compromising situation before and after a waxing or laser hair removal procedure.

Chemical Peels

Are you doing an at-home or in-clinic chemical peel treatment? Either way, we would strongly discourage tanning or sun exposure for your sake. Chemical peels down old, dull layers of the skin to reveal a fresh new layer that is more radiant and youthful in appearance. It is made possible by the fast-acting acid ingredients that they contain, which also makes you sensitive to sunlight.

Light-Based Therapies

Laser skin treatments are often dismissed as photosensitive cosmetic treatments that temporarily increase your risk of hypersensitivity to ultraviolet light. The basis is that laser treatment targets the skin’s pigmentation, also known as melanin, and when your skin is tanned, it confuses the light and messes up your treatment. As a result, it triggers excessive production of melanin in the area and can cause side effects, such as hyperpigmentation or uneven skin tone.

Here at APT Medical Spa, we offer laser treatments that deliver dramatic positive effects and effectively address various skin issues, from acne, premature aging, and blemishes. These include:

  • IPL Lasers: treats brown spots and sun damage, rosacea, facial veins and capillaries, dull skin, uneven skin tone, and aging hands
  • Clear + Brilliant: treats brown spots and sun damage, melasma, enlarged pores, dull skin, and uneven skin tone
  • SkinTyte: a body sculpting treatment that can define various areas of the face and body.
  • BBL: is used to treat vascular lesions (telangiectasia)

Our laser treatments are generally safe. They are administered by licensed aesthetic professionals that are thoroughly trained to give you the best cosmetic treatment experience possible.

Photosensitive Cosmetic Treatments

Sun Protection Tips

In summary, light-based treatments and skin resurfacing procedures make you prone to photosensitivity. Should you shun these treatments altogether? Definitely no. The benefits of these photosensitive cosmetic treatments significantly outweigh the risks. Furthermore, it’s not necessary to postpone your appointments during the summer season.

As long as you seek treatment from a reputable aesthetician and stick to proactive skincare steps with emphasis on sun protection, you can count that you’ll get nothing but optimum results.

Check out these sun care tips!

1. Incorporate a sunscreen with high SPF into your daily skincare routine

Apply it on your face and other exposed parts of the skin, at least 30 minutes before going outside.

2. Limit your time outdoors

Don’t stay out under the sun for too long, even if you’re wearing sunscreen.

3. Consider your treatment when scheduling your social calendar

If planning a trip or exciting outdoor activities with friends and family, we suggest that you do it at a time when you have completed your photosensitive cosmetic treatments, and your skin has fully healed already.

4. Tell your doctor about existing conditions and medications during the consultation

We encourage you to be as detailed as possible during your visit with us to help us assess you to the best that we can and to prevent any untoward incident related to photosensitivity and other adverse effects.

5. Follow post-treatment care guidelines issued by your aesthetic physician

At APT, we give a list of do’s and don’ts for clients to follow after they go through photosensitive cosmetic treatments.

For more information on how to book a consultation, contact APT today!


Contact Us

Contact APT Medical Aesthetics now.

Contact APT Medical Aesthetics now. Whether you want to book a consultation, find out more about our services, or simply want to ask a few questions, we would love to hear from you!

    Location IconOakville
    APT Medical Aesthetics.

    1276A Cornwall Road,
    Oakville ON, L6J 7W5

    Monday – Friday: 9 am – 6 pm
    By Appointment Only
    Saturday – Sunday: Closed

    Phone - Icon(905) 849-8646

    Mail - Iconinfo@aptmedspa.com

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    Contact APT Medical Aesthetics now. Whether you want to book an appointment, find out a bit more about our services, or want to simply ask a few questions, we would love to hear from you!

    APT Medical Aesthetics Ltd. is world-class private complete skin care clinic in the Greater Toronto Area of Ontario, serving Oakville. We
    provide our treatments in a safe, trusting, comfortable environment. Our clinic is pleased to offer the most advanced and comprehensive skin care solutions
    including Botox Cosmetic / Dysport / Xeomin, Dermal Filler, Laser Skin Resurfacing to clients across Ontario.

    Contact us for more information or to book a free consultation appointment at our Oakville, or clinics. Our friendly team of beauty consultants
    and aestheticians are available Monday to Friday 9 am to 6 pm, Saturday & Sunday : Closed

    We are open weekdays for class sessions and by request.

    If you have any questions or concerns, please email us at info@aptmedspa.com

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