For your skin to enjoy polo as much as you do, it needs the right sunscreen.

Summer, sunshine, polo. What could be more enjoyable? But for your skin to survive the heated matches on the polo field unscathed, you should take care of it correctly. This is explained by Andrea Weber, Head of the BABOR Research and Innovation Centre, in an interview with the editor of Polo Luxury & Country Life Magazine, Birgit Hügli Herrmann.

Ms Weber, please describe the basic care necessary to optimally protect your skin while on the polo field?
The important aspect is sunscreen with UVA and UVB filters. UVA and UVB rays can cause irreparable harm to your skin. The particularly high-energy UVB rays create sunburn and age spots, while UVA rays penetrate deep into the epidermis and are the main culprit for the skin’s ageing and long-term damage such as skin cancer. UVA and UVB filters reduce the UV radiation penetrating the skin.

Why is there different skin care for men and women?
Men’s skin has more hair follicles and therefore more sebaceous glands. That’s why it often looks greasier. It also has a thicker dermis and better interconnected fatty tissue. Men should apply a light day care cream, but should use the same sunscreen as women.

How long before a match should one apply sunscreen?
You should wait until the product has been absorbed completely. Always apply ample sunscreen and distribute it evenly.

Does perspiration, so ample on the polo field, influence the sunscreen? How frequently should you reapply sunscreen?
Sunscreen does not fully protect from damaging radiation, but extends the time it takes to cause damage. Example: Sunburn usually occurs after 10 minutes. At protection factor 30, it would now take 5 hours for you to get the same sunburn as after half an hour without sunscreen. However, this “extension period” should not be exploited to the maximum. Reapplying sunscreen will not extend protection, merely maintain it. So reapplying sunscreen is mandatory when perspiring during polo.

What does one do after the match? Showering with cold or luke-warm water and then immediately applying After Sun Care?
As enticing as it may sound, it is not sensible to take a cold shower directly after sunbathing. The body first has to cool down. Then take a luke-warm shower, as overly cold water is “shocking” for both the skin and the circulation! To regenerate and calm your skin, use After Sun Care or moisturising ampoules. Light textures such as fluids or serum are particularly pleasant.

Any other suggestions for spectators when it comes to sunscreen?
Spectators should use sunscreen even when sitting in the shade. After all, the skin is still exposed to almost half of direct sunlight. The recommended protection factor depends on the skin tone and where one is sitting. When watching a polo match by the sea or in southern countries, you will need a higher factor. Apply the protection filter on the skin first for it to optimally develop its protective effect. If you use a sunscreen product before applying make-up, leave it to absorb fully.

Should female spectators rather apply a tinted day care cream with protection factor instead of make-up?
Female spectators don’t have to do without make-up as long as the product has a high protection factor. We recommend compact make-up with sunscreen. It’s practical and the protection factor is easily replenished.

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