Monday, June 6, 2011

Everybody's Free (To Wear Sunscreen)

Photo by pullip_junk.
I’ll be the first to admit it – I’m bad at sunscreen.

That’s not entirely true. I’m bad at putting sunscreen on my shoulders and back at least once a year, which means once a year I get more sun than I should. I’m trying to be better at this, but it’s an uphill battle!

You don’t need me to lecture you on the reasons why you should use sunscreen. But maybe you’re thinking about buying one and you want to know which one would be best for you. Well, there I can help you out. I’ve been looking into it and here’s what I found!

The Environmental Working Group has a great sunscreen guide that outlines which are the best... But here's a little round-up of the best and worst!

The Best:
  • Alba Botanical Sun Mineral Sunscreen SPF 30
  • Aubrey Organics Natural Sun Sport Stick Unscented Sunscreen, SPF 30
  • Kiss My Face 100% Natural Blue Sun Stick, SPF 30
The Worst:
  • Banana Boat Sport Performance Active Max Protect, SPF 110 ("The letters SPF mean “sun protection factor” and refers only to protection against UVB radiation, which burns the skin. It has nothing to do UVA radiation that penetrates deep into the skin, accelerates skin aging and may cause skin cancer.")
  • Elizabeth Arden – Eight Hour Cream Sun Defense for Face, SPF 50 ("Even though sunscreen makers like Elizabeth Arden can add stabilizing additives to slow down the pace with which the cream breaks down in sunlight, this product simply does not last for hours and hours on the skin.")
  • Coppertone Water Babies Sunscreen Lotion SPF 70+ ("This Coppertone sunscreen is one of more than 20 sunscreens with the word “baby” in their name and the chemical oxybenzone on their ingredient lists. Don’t buy them. Plenty of safer products are available.")
Keep in mind, I'm not a health expert! I'm just passing this information along to you. When you do apply sunscreen, here's how to do it right!

Here's hoping you have a burn-free summer!


  1. Is it just me, or does applying sun screen mess up nail polish?


  2. I find I'm super careful to get the kids covered and once I get that done I've run out of time, running out the door to take my walk to school. I really must get more dedicated to getting it on me as well.

  3. @Kym - some of the emulsifying ingredients used to dissolve the blocking agents in sunscreen can also dissolve the kinds of acrylic chemicals used in nailpolish and fake nails. So: yes, sunscreen does mess up nailpolish! Higher SPFs tend to be the worst culprits.

    @Jes - Any recommendations on sunscreen for sensitive skin? I am allergic to *something* in many brands of sunscreen, and can only apply hypoallergenic-non-comedogenic-oil-free-benzophenone-free varieties, otherwise my skin turns red and tingles and burns. This is especially troubling when makeup companies put sunscreen in foundation or lipgloss but do not label accordingly!