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Sunscreen 101: Sunscreens to Choose and Avoid

Sunscreen 101: Sunscreens to Choose and AvoidHello Summer! We all use sunscreen (hopefully)… so let’s talk about it.

Summer is here and as the days heat up we’ve all been taught to slather ourselves in sunscreen. Suddenly everyone is talking about the dangers of sunscreen and how it may not be good for our bodies. You may be wondering what the solution is – so we are here to help you break down the info and guide you on how to safely protect your skin from the harmful sun’s rays.

2 Types of Sunscreen

Physical Sunscreen: Works like a shield, by sitting on your skin and deflecting the sun’s rays.

Active ingredients like Zinc Oxide and Titanium Oxide.

Chemical Sunscreen: Works like a sponge, absorbing the sun’s rays.

Active ingredients like Oxybenzone, Homosalate, Octrocrylene, and Avobenzone.

Why the concern about ingredients?

When it comes to the chemical sunscreen, the ingredients appear to be absorbed into the skin. Recently as levels have been tested, and side effects have been re-evaluated, it been thought that the amount of the chemicals being absorbed by the body is at a much higher level than previously believed. Now, hold on tight, let’s not abandon it altogether.

Along with the increased absorption rates, some of these ingredients such as Oxybenzone are now thought to possibly contribute to endocrine disruption, and possible cancer.  Hormone levels, thyroid problems, and reproductive issues are the main cause of concerns along with skin and allergy irritations. Honestly though, I think we need more research before we can definitively come up with answers since many sources say yay and many say nay.

You see, skin Cancer is the most prevalent form of cancer in the US and continues to grow, and the suns rays continue to get stronger and stronger. So we really need to get serious about covering up (a hint to what’s coming next!).

What’s the solution?

Honestly, I recommend that people buy the natural zinc/titanium based products, and reapply more often than they’re used to… truthfully we do need more research. Chemicals are chemicals, so if we can reduce the amount of chemicals we’re exposed to that’s great.

Something that I have also found helpful (that avoids the entire conversation about chemicals), is choosing to use sun-protective clothing. Personally, I find that I don’t get burnt, and don’t have to worry about missing spots when I wear great sun-protective clothes; so here are some brands I love (sunblock and sun-protective clothing). But bottom line, WEAR IT! Even if it’s not the perfect type- some is better than none, but check out the products we love below.

Products we love!


Mott 50


Lily Pulitzer (on Amazon)

Sunscreen: (there are more!)

Babo Sheer Zinc Spray

Daily Defense Ursa Major

Alba Botanical – Sheer Spray

Where can you look for more info?

Environmental Working Group


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