Many of us are passionate about taking care of skin - and there are numerous products and healthy living techniques that can benefit this incredibly important part of our bodies.

It can give the world an impression of how old we are, the state of our health and perhaps our lifestyle, so it's little wonder we worry about how it looks!

One fact remains however, and is always worth bearing in mind. If you head out into the sun without the right protection, it could badly hurt your skin, no matter how much care you take of it the rest of the time.

The British Skin Foundation's Hermione Lawson has discussed sun protection recently. She was quizzed on what people are able to do when it comes to protecting skin if they're going outside for lengthy periods.

She advised protecting skin using loose clothes. One item she recommended was a wide-brimmed variety of hat.

Fashion is something many of us feel is important when it comes to clothing - but there are also feature you might want to look for in a sun hat.

For sun protection, ideally your hat should cover the back part of the neck as well as your ears. Ms Lawson said these were: "two places that are frequently missed when applying sunscreen to the head."

So what sort of sunscreen should you opt for? The BSF recommends one that is SPF (sun protection factor) 30 or over. It should also have five or four stars when it comes to UVA rating.

"In general you need to reapply every couple of hours," she advised. "However, you should bear in mind that you may need to reapply more often as sweating and general contact may cause the sunscreen to come off. It may be worth carrying a small bottle around with you so that you don't get caught out," Ms Lawson advised.

And protection from sun is needed in the UK, as well as overseas. "When people think of sun protection, they often just think of holidaying in countries traditionally hotter than the UK," commented Ms Lawson.

"However, within the summer months the UV index in the UK can often be high or very high, and so it is not uncommon for people to burn within the UK," she warned.

Burn and you could face peeling skin, red-looking skin and hot, sore skin. Whether you make an extra special effort to take care of your skin or simply wash with soap and water, this won't be something you want. And neither, of course, is the added skin cancer risk that burning can bring with it.

"By allowing yourself to burn, you substantially increase your risk of developing skin cancer. In fact just one episode of sunburn before the age of 20 can double your risk of skin cancer in later life," said Ms Lawson.

Even if we know all the advice about skin care and the sun, we might not always follow it. Don't let that happen anymore. Make a good move this summer, and do all you can to protect your skin.