Top Three Things To Consider When Choosing Your Sunscreen
Summer, summer, summer!
Memorial Day has come and gone, marking the official start of summer! We were extremely lucky to kick off the season in Florida at this fabulous spot celebrating a good friend’s wedding.
And as you probably could tell, summer is by far my favorite season. Warm temps, outdoor dining, sun, cool treats, sand, and the ocean – nothing beats it! People take on a different tone. They’re happy, more laid back and in the busy DMV that is definitely something to be celebrated. But as you’re packing up the picnic lunches and deciding on what toys to grab to the beach, you should also take into consideration how you’re protecting your skin. These are the three top things to keep in mind when choosing the best sunscreen for your and your family’s health.
1. Avoid spray sunscreens
Having the option to simply spray on your sunscreen seems like a easy, convenient way to get your skin protected but the cons out weigh the pros with these types of sunscreen. First the sprays make application more spotty, leaving certain places on your skin potential more susceptible to the sun. More importantly, the ingredients used in most personal care products on the shelves have not been tested for long term safety. These toxins are more easily inhaled with spray sunscreen affecting the lungs.
2. Choose “mineral” over “chemical”
Most sunscreens use the active ingredients oxybenzone or avobenzone. These “chemicals” are more easily absorbed through the skin, into the blood stream and are known hormone disrupters. They only provide protection against UVA rays and are easily broken down by sunlight which reduces their protection abilities. A better choice would be a “mineral” sunscreen that instead uses zinc oxide or titanium dioxide. These ingredients aren’t absorbed into the skin and aren’t affected by sunlight. They also block both UVB and UVB rays, protecting your skin from the most damaging rays. Overall a much better option!
3. Higher isn’t always better
Studies have shown that with sunscreens above SPF 50, there is no added benefit or increased protection associated with a higher SPF. In fact, it can add a false sense a security. You may think that you don’t need to use it as much or as often. SPF also only alerts you to a sunscreen’s ability to protect against UVB rays, not UVA which are the more damaging sun rays. Which is why choosing a SPF 30-50 “mineral” sunscreen over a SPF 50+ and reapplying often is recommended.
One of my top sunscreen choices is the Alba unscented, mineral sunscreen – leave me a comment and tell me about yours!
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