Choosing the Right Sunscreen
Ready to enjoy the summer sun but overwhelmed by the endless varieties of sunscreen? Follow our simple guide to selecting the right products for you and your skin!
Sunscreen is key to protecting your skin from cancer, burns and signs of aging, and can be easily incorporated into your morning routine. Most liquid BB creams and foundations include some sort of SPF component, which is fine for the winter months. However, once you’re spending more time outside during the summer, dermatologists recommend using an additional sun protection product.
What to know:
Chemical: Contains ingredients that absorb the sun’s UV Rays and convert the radiation into heat energy.
- 1. There are really only two types of sunscreen out there.
Physical: Contains ingredients that deflect and scatter the rays before they penetrate your skin
One is not better than the other and most new formulas will contain a bit of both. Be on the lookout for ingredients like PABA and oxybenzone, as they can be irritating to those with sensitive skin.
- 2. Be wary of high SPF.
The number on the bottle stands for Sun Protection Factor, but despite what most people think, the higher the number does mean you‘re getting a higher level of protection. Choose a sunscreen in the range of SPF15-SPF50. Studies show that anything above SPF50 doesn’t offer superior protection.
- 3. Get the right coverage.
UVB rays are the cancer-culprits, but did you know UVA rays can be just as harmful? UVA rays do not burn your skin. Instead, your skin absorbs the rays on a much deeper level, leading to wrinkles, discoloration and loose skin!
Pick a sunscreen that combats both UVB and UVA rays with a product that says “Broad Spectrum.”
What to look for:
Sensitive Skin: If you have sensitive skin or skin conditions such as rosacea, stay away from chemicals like para-aminobenzoic (PABA), dioxybenzone, oxybenzone, or sulisobenzone.If you have skin irritation or allergies, avoid sunscreens with alcohol, fragrances or preservatives. Try one of the broad-spectrum skin screens designed for children. They’re usually much more gentle.
Water Resistance: If you know you’ll be in and out of the water, or even just working up a sweat, pick a sunscreen that’s water resistant. No sun protection is water proof, but water-resistant formulas will allow you to reapply less often.
Children: The physical sunscreens zinc oxide and titanium dioxide tend to be found in sunscreens for babies and children. Also, since getting children to use sunscreen is half the battle, try spray sunscreens. They are just as effective!