My Grandma is the first person I think of when I hear the term 'white bits', and it gives me such a giggle each time that I use it quite often in my social media posts. Partly as a reminder not to take ourselves too seriously through life, but instead to definitely take our skin health seriously when it comes to achieving a tan. I love nothing more than the heat of the sun: my ideal holiday checklist includes sunshine as the number one criteria. But as you also know I am all about safe, sunless tanning.

Fortunately, my skin tone does allow me to tan well even with plenty of sun protection, but I do take care in the sun due to all the moles and pigmentation I have. I have learned from my Grandma and family history with skin vs sun battles, that it really is worth protecting your skin well with a quality broad spectrum SPF to prevent skin problems later in life. Not to mention the ageing effect the sun has on our skin, but that's enough content for a whole other blog post!! 

My Grandma (now in her 80's) is a tall, elegant blonde lady and has always reminded me of Julie Andrews, especially her character as Queen Clarisse in Princess Diaries. She was born and raised in Chile, and spent her early adult life in Peru where she was married at 18. She had five children by the age I am now. Even the thought of one child scares me, I can't even imagine life with five! I digress. I will share more about her amazing life story another time as she is an incredible woman but for now I will stick to the topic at hand...

The doctors in South America thought she had a skin disease and proclaimed that they had never seen skin like this before: referring to her freckles! She didn't know much about the importance of SPF in those days, so over the years her freckles multiplied and grew, and have amalgamated into a full body tan... apart from her 'white bits' as she fondly refers to them, and will very willingly produce for you on demand! When she does, it's amazing to see the stark difference between her smooth plump white skin, unharmed by the sun, and the rest of her skin which spent years exposed to the sun.

I love these images of her from our wedding in Croatia, each freckle with a story to tell! Maybe she is the lucky one, as she doesn't have to bother with fake tan or make up ever. I wouldn't change a thing about her, but I am so glad she has passed on lessons about looking after your skin, as risking sunburn or having a skin health scare just isn't worth it in the long run. We have no excuse, especially when we have incredible tanning products available to us nowadays! 

Photo credit: Nina Photo Croatia @nina_nphoto

Jill McLeanComment