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Bee Safe in the Sun

June 30, 2012

While you have doubtless heard this before, it is time to talk about that annual summertime topic: sunscreen.

A lot of us enjoy the appearance of a summer tan; unfortunately, that summer tan increases your chances of developing skin cancer, which is expensive to treat, and continues to crop up once it appears, and of developing wrinkles more quickly.

So here are a few tips and tricks regarding sunscreen to keep in mind while enjoying the weather outside:

Purchasing:

  • Sunscreen with very high SPFs probably do not actually provide very much additional protection. There actually probably is not much point in buying sunscreen with an SPF higher than 30.
  • According to the Environmental Working Group (EWG), it is better to use a lotion, rather than a spray or powder sunscreen.
  • The EWG also recommends purchasing sunscreen with active ingredients (zinc oxide, titanium dioxide, Mexoryl SX, and avobenzone).
  • Make sure to get waterproof or water resistant sunscreen, even if you do not plan on going into the water, since you are likely to sweat if you are outside in the sun.
Application:
  • Make sure to put your sunscreen on at least 15 minutes before going outside.
  • Even waterproof sunscreen should be re-applied every 2-3 hours.
  • If you are going outside for extended periods of time, even if it is not excessively sunny outside, you should still put on sunscreen, because there is still the possibility of suffering sun damage.
Making sure to purchase and use effective sunscreen is a great start to protecting your skin outdoors, but sunscreen cannot provide 100% protection, and should ideally only be a part of your skincare regimen.

The information in this blog post uses information gleaned from the following sites: LA Times, About.com,  EWG’s Skin Deep, & skincancer.org.

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