Driving with the top down & why this Drives Dermatologists crazy.
Are you planning to go for a joyride in a convertible? Is this a daily pleasure or only a rare trip? If you are at all concerned about photoaging or skin cancer I would recommend keeping the top up, or at least following these recommendations for how to protect your skin while you are having a good time.
Make sure to apply your sunscreen every 1.5 hours, especially if you are sweating on a hot summer day. If you can wear a hat that is secure and won’t fly away this would be a great way to protect your scalp and upper face, or you can wear a scarf (this will serve to hold your hair in place as well). Third, I recommend wearing your sunglasses with UVA/UVB filter at all time to both protect your eyes from damage, but also to protect the delicate skin around your eyes to prevent premature wrinkles from forming.
I don’t mean to be a spoilsport, you can still have fun, just be mindful of the sun. While you are driving the wind blows on you and you sometimes don’t realize just how strong the sun is. The damage is cumulative over time and it is not necessary that you even get sunburned to have photodamage. If your car has sunroof openings with glass or just a mesh fabric cover, inquire the manufacturer as to what SPF rating it has.
Dr. Kally Papantoniou, MD, FAAD
Board Certified Dermatologist: Cosmetic & Medical
Advanced Dermatology Laser & Cosmetic Surgery
Mount Sinai Dermatology Clinical Instructor