Best Tips When Choosing a Healthy, Effective Sunscreen

Let me share the best tips when choosing a sunscreen.  If you practice these tips you will have more youthful and radiant skin. These tips are healthy and more importantly effective for sun protection.

WHAT TO LOOK FOR

SPF 30

  • SPF 30 is most recommended by dermatologists.
  • SPF or Sun Protecting Factor is an indicator for protection from Ultra Violet or UVB ONLY. SPF does not protect against UVA. An SPF 50 only provides 1% more protection than an SPF 30.

Mineral based ingredients

  • Zinc oxide is a mineral ingredient that creates a physical barrier, and is the most broad spectrum ingredient protecting you from the UVB and most of the UVA rays.
  • Titanium dioxide is another mineral ingredient that creates a physical barrier.

Broad spectrum

  • Sunscreen products that protect against all types of sun-induced skin damage.
  • SPF 15” (or higher)

Water Resistant

  • Water resistance is an indication of whether the sunscreen allows 40 minutes or 80 minutes sun protection while swimming or sweating.
  • Manufacturers cannot label sunscreens as “waterproof” or “sweat proof” any longer.

HOW TO APPLY

  • Apply a dime size amount for face
  • Apply a shot glass amount for entire body
  • Reapply every 2 hours – sunscreen can degrade in the sun
  • Reapply after getting out of water – sunscreen can be removed when using a towel or it can rub off on clothing

AVOID:

  • Oxybenzone, a synthetic estrogen which can disrupt the hormone system when it penetrates the skin. 4
  • Vitamin A, which is listed as retinyl palmitate or retinol. Scientific studies indicate that tumors and/or lesions develop sooner.
  • Direct sun between the hours of 10:00 am and 2:00 pm if you are not wearing sunscreen. This is when UVB rays are prominent.
  • Do not use sunscreen with insect repellent. Buy a bug repellent separately if needed, and apply it first.

OTHER SUN PROTECTION MEASURES

  • Find shade.
  • Wear a wide brimmed hat – 3 inches or more in width.
  • Wear UPF clothing.
  • Enjoy the outdoors in early morning or late afternoon.
  • Don’t forget your lips or tips of ears
  • Wear sunglasses. UV radiation may cause cataracts.
  • Increase protection when near water, sand or snow, as UVA reflects off all three.

Image: Dreamstime, June 28, 2016

Sources: Skin Cancer Foundation, EWG, FDA

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