What to look for when choosing a sunscreen
The weather has finally turned and we are loving it! But with the sunshine comes more time spent outdoors. It's so important to protect your skin from all of the elements, but no element is more dangerous to your skin health than the UVA/UVB rays of the sun.
Skin cancer is on the rise here in the United States and around the world. Luckily for us, it is also one of the most preventable cancers around. Just follow these steps:
1) Use A Minimum SPF Of 15 (30 if you are extremely fair, have a history of burning, or a family history of skin cancer).
For most people, 15 provides a good level of protection from the most damaging of rays. Bear in mind that the higher the SPF, the smaller the increased benefit: That means that SPF 30 isn't twice as strong as SPF 15. In fact, SPF 15 filters out 93% of UVB and SPF 30 filters out 97%, which is only a slight improvement.
2) Reapply EVERY 2 HOURS (more often if you've been swimming or sweating). While mosty people happily put on sunscreen when they're heading out, they are far less likely to reapply as necessary. The sunscreen degrades as it sits on your skin. This means that one application a day is not enough to keep your skin from burning, aging, or worse. Keep sunscreen in your purse/backpack/car/office - basically everywhere. That way, you will never be without it.
3) Use Mineral Based Sunscreens if you have sensitive skin. Those with rosacea, eczema, psoriosis, or other skin disorders that result in sensitivity should use mineral based sunscreens. Look for Zinc Oxide and Titanium Dioxide on the ingredients list. These do not absorb into the skin, rather they tend to sit in the very surface layers, reducing the possibilities of irritating your skin.
Please don't hesitate to ask Liz any questions about your skin and the sun this summer. She is here to help you stay healthy and safe!
- Elizabeth Quesnelle