Not all sunscreen is created equal.
Therefore, it can be overwhelming to know which products you can trust and those you should avoid. Don’t worry! We’ve done the research for you. Keep reading for the attributes you should look for in high quality sunscreen.
SPF or Sun Protection Factor is a measure of sunscreen’s ability to prevent UVB from damaging the skin. Well, now you might be thinking to yourself, “What’s the difference between SPF 15 and SPF 50 sunscreen?”. Let’s break it down into the percent each SPF filters out:
SPF 15 – 93% of all incoming UVB rays
SPF 30 – 97% of all incoming UVB rays
SPF 50 – 98% of all incoming UVB rays
Difference in protection is minimal, but if you have sensitive skin, or your family has a history of skin cancer, an extra 5% can make a large impact. No matter if you are using SPF 30 or 50, no sunscreen can black all UV rays.
Broad spectrum is a term that is often synonymous with sunscreen, but what does it actually mean?
Two types of UV light can damage your skin – UVA and UVB. Broad spectrum sunscreen products protect you from both. The first can prematurely age your skin while the latter can cause your skin to burn (something we are all too familiar with). Personal care products being sold and labeled as broad spectrum sunscreen must be tested and meet the updated FDA standards on a regular basis. Make sure your sunscreen of choice is up to par.
Oxybenzone aka benzophenone-3, BP-3, and 2-hydroxy-4-methoxybenzophenone. Wow that’s a mouthful. So, why is it bad?
Environmental Working Group says the chemical oxybenzone is being added to nearly 65% of non-mineral sunscreens as documented in their 2017 sunscreen database. Oxybenzone is a chemical found in some flowering plants. However, it is now being commercially produced from benzoyl chloride with 3-hydroxyanisole. Research suggests that chemical sunscreens are absorbed through the skin and make their way into the bloodstream. EWG, among other toxicology experts, believe it is linked to hormone disruption and potentially to cell damage that may lead to skin cancer. Double check the label to ensure your sunscreen doesn’t have this toxic ingredient. Learn more at ewg.org
Reapply How Often?
– After 40 minutes of swimming or sweating
– Immediately after towel drying
– At least every 2 hours
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