May is Skin Cancer Awareness month, and we are always looking for the best ways to protect our family from unnecessary sun damage. So what type of sunscreen works the best? Below I’ll be sharing some great information that will help you to better understand the world of sunscreen!
Types of UV Rays
Understanding exactly what happens upon setting out for a day at the beach will help you determine what sunscreen is best. There are two types of UV’s, the first is UVA – this is the reason you may see darkening age spots, wrinkles or feel a bit sick after too much sun. UVA ray’s soak into the skin so deeply that it can actually effect your immune system. UVB rays are what cause you to sunburn.
Finding a sunscreen that can protect you from both UVA and UVB rays also known as Broad Spectrum helps to prevent tumors on the skin, Squamous Cell Carcinoma – which is a form of cancer, sunburn, age spots and wrinkles. Because companies aren’t required to offer protection from both UVA and UVB (yet), it’s a good idea to look at the ingredients.
What SPF Is The Safest To Use?
There is a common misconception that the higher the SPF, the better the protection. SPF is the calculation for how long it takes for you to get a sunburn while wearing the sunscreen, because it deflects only UVB rays the SPF number is not critical. What is important is if it’s a broad spectrum sunscreen or not. However, it’s been recommended by dermatologist to use a minimum SPF 30 or higher, especially if you’ll be exposed to the sun for a long period of time. If you plan on being outside for an entire day, SPF 50 is recommended.
Whether you use an SPF 30 or SPF 50 it’s a good idea to apply and apply often. When we’re enjoying outdoor activities it’s easy to sweat off your sunscreen so try to apply often if you’re running or playing sports. Finding a sunscreen that’s waterproof can help protect you during swimming where it’s very easy to burn, especially on the face, chest and shoulders. My best suggestion is to find a sunscreen that is SPF 30 or higher, waterproof and has broad spectrum protection.
How Else Can I Protect Myself?
In addition to a proper sunscreen, finding other means to protect yourself from harsh UV rays is important. Sun protection can be easy when you’re prepared. If going to the beach, try bringing a sun umbrella or tent. Escaping from the sun to some cool shade will make the day more enjoyable and the kids will thank you while eating their lunch. If you like to
exercise outdoors with activities like jogging or hiking, sun protection clothing can greatly reduce your risk of sunburn and cut down on sunscreen applications during your workout.
When it comes to sun protection it’s best to be proactive and prepared.
What’s your favorite sunscreen?