We purchase sunscreen for one reason and one reason only. To protect our skin from the harmful UV rays that cause sunburn and potentially skin cancer. But what if your sunscreen is not protecting you at all, but actually damaging your skin over the long haul? Let’s review what we have learned over the last few years about UV sun protection.
It’s in…EWG’s 2010 Sunsreen Report just in time for summer!
Since the Environmental Working Group (EWG) released the results of a major study on sunscreen back in 2009, thousands are left wondering where to turn for trusted natural sunscreen protection. According to this study, out of 1,767 brand name sunscreens on the market during the summer of 2009, EWG found that 2 out of 5 offered inadequate protection from the sun or contained ingredients and chemicals with huge safety concerns.
Most of us purchase high SPF sunscreens for a trip to the beach, a sun filled vacation, or even a day by the pool to protect our skin and especially our children and babies skin from the dangers of the sun. While SPF sunscreen products may block UVB rays protecting you from that nasty sunburn and some skin cancers, the FDA does not require companies to block UVA rays in their products. So, what’s so bad about the UVA rays we have been soaking up our entire lives?
According to EWG, UVA rays penetrate your skin more deeply than UVB rays and are linked to skin aging. You know….skin sagging, wrinkles, and age spots to name a few. The verdict is still out about the link to skin cancer however with more and more people using sunscreen than ever before, shouldn’t skin cancer rates be declining?
In addition to NO UVA protection, many sunscreens contain dangerous ingredients. The biggest culprit, oxybenzone, approved by the FDA is an active ingredient in sunscreen and a known hormone disruptor. So now we are slathering our bodies with dangerous chemicals to protect our skin. Another reason to switch to a natural sunscreen.
If you are someone who always thought you were protecting your skin by using an all day moisturizer that advertises SPF protection, think again. Even if you find one that provides decent protection from UVA rays (it must say so on the package), applying it once in the morning is not going to give you all day protection. Just as sunscreens state that you must reapply often, the same goes for your moisturizer.
As more and more of the public is being educated about proper sunscreen protection, companies are responding however, the UVA protection is still just not good enough. A new 2010 report is just around the corner and we can only hope that more companies have improved their sunscreens over the last year. After all, if sales decline because the public is switching to natural sunscreen products and even those with better UVA protection, companies will really start to take action.
It’s in….the new EWG 2013 Sunscreen Report. (new and updated for 2013!)
So how do you find the best sunscreen for your family?
- Read the EWG Sunscreen Report and download a free sunscreen guide.
- Look for a sunscreen with at least SPF 30.
- The best sunscreen will have at least 7% zinc oxide.
- Sunscreens with avobenzone, mexoryl, titanium dioxide, and zinc are best for UVA coverage.
- Make the switch to an all natural sunscreen without harmful chemicals.
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