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Summer Sunscreen Protection

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With summer sun comes summer sun protection. While it’s fun to be out in the backyard, swimming in a pool or going for a hike, the sun emits dangerous ultraviolet rays that can be harmful to our skin. To stay protected, many of us use sunscreen to combat these rays and keep our skin healthy for years to come. From Good Housekeeping, here are ten sunscreen myths to help you make the right choices this summer season while enjoying the sunshine.

Myth: Sunscreen doesn’t expire.
Truth: Most sunscreen bottles have an expiration date because the chemical formulas can change over time. It’s a good idea to check the dates and get new sunscreen each summer season.

Myth: SPF 100 means you’re protected 100%.
Truth: No sunscreen offers 100% protection. A Sun Protection Factor of 30 offers 97% of UV radiation blocked, while SPF 50 offers 98%.

Myth: You need special sunscreen for your face.
Truth: SPF is SPF, so it’s okay to use a face sunscreen or regular sunscreen on your face.

Myth: If it’s cloudy, you don’t need as much sunscreen.
Truth: Even when cloudy, up to 80% of UV rays can reach your skin. So, treat cloudy days like any other sunny day, and wear your sunscreen.

Myth: Just coat your skin, and you’re good to go.
Truth: Don’t use a thin, quick coat of sunscreen. The American Academy of Dermatology says to rub on a shot-size glass (1 oz) of sunscreen each time you apply.

Myth: Store sunscreen in the car for on-the-go use.
Truth: Sunscreens should be stored somewhere cool and out of direct sunlight to prevent the ingredients from breaking down. It’s best to take the sunscreen out of the car and store in the shade or in a cooler when you’re outside.

Myth: It’s ok to rub sunscreen on when you’re already out in the sun.
Truth: A more effective application is to put sunscreen on about 30 minutes before sun exposure. This allows the ingredients to activate and begin to fully protect your skin.

Myth: Sunscreen & bug repellent combinations are okay.
Truth: The CDC says you’ll need to apply a greater amount of sunscreen more often than you would with bug spray, so it’s best to keep the two products separate. If you need both, apply sunscreen first, and then top with bug spray.

Myth: Spray sunscreens are as effective as lotion.
Truth: The American Academy of Dermatology says to use lotion or cream. While convenient, the spray can make it difficult to know if you’ve used enough and covered your whole body. They suggest spraying it onto your hand and rubbing it on yourself.

Myth: Getting a base tan will protect your skin.
Truth: A base tan may offer some sun protection, but Harvard Health says it would be equivalent to an SPF 3 or 4. Wearing your SPF 30 is a much better safeguard.

 Have a happy, fun and healthy summer!

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Comments

PATRICK E ROSZEL

Good article but you did not cover clothing that is manufactured to protect the wearer from the suns rays.

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