With gorgeous, sunny weather in full swing, it’s important to remember to wear sunscreen! Sun exposure can be helpful for many reasons such as encouraging a healthy sleep-wake cycle and positive mood, along with producing vitamin D, however, too much sun exposure may cause sunburn, premature skin aging and can even increase your risk of skin cancer.
Chemical sunscreens are often a popular option, however, a recent study shows that some of these chemicals like avobenzone, oxybenzone and homosalate are absorbed into the bloodstream and often found at levels higher than the safety limit set by the FDA. While we still need more research to determine exactly what this means for our health and safety, it’s likely best to avoid chemical sunscreens and use mineral ones instead. Mineral sunscreens are not absorbed into the skin as easily as chemical sunscreens and instead form a protective layer on top of the skin. Some of the ingredients that you might see on a bottle of mineral sunscreen include: titanium dioxide or zinc oxide.
Other ways you can protect yourself from the sun include:
- Limiting or avoiding sun exposure between 11am-2pm as this is when the sun’s rays are more likely to cause skin damage
- Wearing clothing that covers your skin such as long-sleeved shirts, pants, hats and sunglasses
If you would like help on choosing a safe mineral sunscreen, check out The Environmental Working Group’s (EWG) Healthy Sunscreen Guide. This comprehensive guide provides a safety rating for different types of sunscreen products and can help you in making a safe choice.
Have your fun in the sun and stay safe at the same time!