As promised, here's a few more tips and information in the world of sun protection to keep you from burning between graduations, celebrations, and your Memorial Day weekend ahead.
We all know we need some sort of sun protection, but with so many choices, it can be incredibly overwhelming.
Here is what we know: In the 1990's the term "sunscreen" became as much of a household term as "where's my pager," "talk to the hand" and "you go, girl." Unfortunately, since then, our rate of sun-related cancers have gone up, not down.
This is no coincidence. The majority of the population still assumes that with a high number on the label, one gets "more protection" or can "stay out even longer." The fact is, the SPF number only refers to the amount of UVB protection the product offers when there are 3 types of UV rays: UVA, UVB, and UVC.
The best way to remember? Think a very thick accent and say out loud to yourself, "You vill age, you vill burn , and you vill cook."
UVA- Age, Artificial sun (tanning beds)
UVB- Burning, Brown spots (hyperpigmentation)
UVC- Carcinogenic, Controversial (Ozone is believed to once break down these rays)
So here's the 411: Most store-bought sunscreens are exactly as they sound, a chemical-based "screen" that protects you from UVA and UVB like a sheer curtain diffuses direct light into a living room. If any of you had a grandmother like mine, you have memories of aluminum foil in the windows that reflected the light like a physical sunscreen does. Only physical sun protection reflects all ray types. Look for zinc or titanium oxides on the label, then imagine the sun getting reflected off your face by a million tiny disco balls. (Making it all that AND a bag of chips...)
Physical sun protection differs in many ways. It can be applied once a day to protect from "incidental exposure" and adheres well to the skin for longer exposure unless it is washed, buffed, or rubbed away. Physical sun protection minerals also even out skin tone, are naturally non-greasy and water-resistant. You still want to reapply any sunscreen if you are going for long periods of exposure. (Duh.)
If you're looking for a sun protection product with such superpowers, check out the newest arrival of Organic Mineral Defense SPF 30, a dust-on sun protectant in a pump-brush with an array of colors from translucent to bronze. For those that want SPF and moisturizer in one, there are options for every skin type.
May you have an amazing month and Memorial Day!