sunscreen – what to look for & what to avoid

With summer coming to the US the shelves of sunscreen are appearing in many stores, and after the first spring burn many people are looking for a sunscreen to slather on to avoid another burn and to protect their skin.

Great idea!  It’s also a great a idea to become a label reader when it comes to choosing your sunscreen (it’s a good idea to read labels all the time).  Here are a few things to consider when buying sunscreen:

1.  Avoid insect repellent.   Some sunscreen formulations contain added insect repellent – avoid these.    Use safe, natural insect repellent if you need it, but I would avoid any sunscreen that has insect repellent on it’s label.  The reasons are many, mainly focused around safety and effectiveness.

2.  Avoid products that contain PABA, Oxybenzone, or Retinyl Palmitate.   There are too many questions that surround these ingredients, and there are good sunscreens that don’t contain them.

3.  Look for Zinc Oxide and Titanium Oxide.   These are mineral ingredients that have been used for a long time and have been proven to be both safe and effective.

4.  You shouldn’t put anything on your skin that you wouldn’t want to eat.   Your skin effectively absorbs products you apply and they enter your bloodstream.  Read the label and become informed about the safety and effectiveness of the ingredients.    Questions about the safety of many of the ingredients use in sunscreen products (and MANY cosmetics) are still not being adequately addressed in my opinion.

5.  The best way to avoid a burn is to limit your exposure to the sun during that 10am-4pm period – this is when you are mostly likely to burn.   Also consider using some of the new light and effective clothes and hats that can help shield from the sun.

6.  Moisturize and hydrate!   Drink lots of water and use a safe effective moisturizer like coconut oil.

Want to know more about anything mentioned in this post?  Let me know – leave a comment.

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