As the weather heats up, it is important to remember that sunscreen is an effective protective agent against damage from the sun’s powerful rays for all ages, genders, and skin types.
Sunscreen keeps your skin healthier in other ways as well. It protects sensitive skin against sunburn and it reduces the appearance of sun damage – discolorations and dark spots, sagging or leathery skin, and wrinkles. These protections help your skin maintain a more even skin tone overall.
Follow these basic guidelines, according to Dr. Natasha Mathias, when choosing and applying a protective product and other tips below that will help you and your family stay healthy this summer.
Sunscreen Products to Avoid:
- Zinc and mineral based products
- Titanium dioxide
- Retinyl palmitate, a form of vitamin A that is linked to sun sensitivity
- Oxybenzone, considered a hormone disruptor
Other Sunscreen Tips:
- Plan ahead and keep sun protection handy in the car or purse or diaper bag.
- Apply sunscreen even when kids aren’t at the pool or beach. Just a few serious sunburns can increase a kid’s risk of skin cancer later in life.
- Keep babies under 6 months in the shade, and use hats, protective clothes, pop-up tents, and umbrellas.
- Apply sunscreen generously 15 minutes before going outdoors and reapply at least every two hours. Reapply sunscreen after sweating, getting wet, or towel drying. Don’t forget to protect ears, noses, lips, and the tops of feet!
- Avoid aerosol sprays, as they provide inadequate and non-uniform skin coverage, and kids can also inhale the product.