Time to think about sunscreen!
Spring is here and summer is rolling in quickly. Whether you are in the sunshine to play in the surf and sand or cheer on your favorite soccer player you might want to think about a few things.
Environmental Working Group (EWG) rates sunscreens every year for safety. Sadly, two-thirds of the sunscreens analyzed did not work well or contained potentially hazardous ingredients. Isn’t it sad we’ve slathered on sunscreens thinking we were protecting ourselves when in truth we make ourselves a melanoma magnet? Thank goodness for research and options. A little self education goes a long way to making safer choices.
Three Biggies to Avoid
• Oxybenzone – used to absorb ultraviolet light. Acts like estrogen in the body so it disrupts our normal flow of hormones.
• Retinyl Palmitate (aka: Vitamin A palmitate) – May actually speed up the development of malignant cells when exposed to the sun. Yikes!
• Fragrance – catch phrase for several potentially toxic chemicals. Two examples are parabens which are known to disrupt our normal hormone production and phthalates, a carcinogenic preservative, linked to liver and kidney damage as well as reproductive issues.
How to Choose Healthy Sunscreen
I like to think of my healthy sunscreen as a physical barrier to the sun not a chemical cesspool. Look for sunscreens that are broad spectrum protectors – meaning they will block UVB rays and some UVA. Ingredients like zinc oxide and titanium oxide are physical barriers that fit the bill. However, you want to steer clear of “micronized” or “nano” particle formulas to keep the reefs and oceans safe.
An inconvenient fact is that lotions are safer for you than the handy-dandy spray on sunscreens. I don’t like it either, but it is what it is. As I like to remind myself as I rub my sunscreen on – there’s a cost for everything and if I have to spend a little extra time rubbing in healthy sunscreen so be it!
Healthy Sunscreen Choices
I love Lemongrass Spa’s line of healthy sunscreens. I trust the label – no monkey business with semantics in labeling with this company. They have three great products to fit my family’s needs.
Sunscreen Sport Lotion – SPF 30 broad spectrum UVB/UVA protection. Natural mineral formula contains 22.5% non-nano particle Zinc Oxide. Gluten-free, Vegan and biodegradable. No PEGs, GMOs, fragrance, parabens or synthetic color.
Sunscreen Sport Stick – 100% all-natural ingredients with non-nano titanium dioxide (14.8%) and zinc oxide (7.4%). Convenient 1 oz clear push-up stick. Great for kids and adults for summer or winter outdoor sports. Comes in a tinted version too!
Sheer Minerals BB Crème – Powerhouse foundation containing moisturizing and anti-aging ingredients as well as SPF 15. The healing and repairing properties of avocado oil and fine line plumping effects of peptides are combined in the skin brightening “Beauty Balm” formula. Love it!
Safe Sunning Tips
The sun is not our enemy. Our lack of planning is. We need the sun to synthesize vitamin D so a daily dose of sunshine is healthy. But for those times when we’re beaching it – or soccer fielding it – for the day we need to have healthy, natural solutions to turn to. Consider my tips:
• Get your daily dose of vitamin D! It doesn’t take long, but it does a body good.
• If you know you’ll be out for longer periods of time cover up with clothing, hats or sun umbrellas or safe healthy sunscreen.
• Always protect your face. Our skin is thin here and easily damaged by the sun – think wrinkles!
• Load up on fresh veggies that are full of antioxidants. Yes, you can help avoid sun damage from the inside out!
The bottom line here is to enjoy the sun safely and with a little knowledge and pre-planning you will be ‘golden’ – pun intended!