The weather is fair, the days are warming, and oh how good it feels to be out in that sun soaking up the Vitamin D.
The latest research about soaking up the sun and wearing certain types of sunscreen can be harmful according to Environmental Working Group studies. You can access their guide to the best and worst rated screens here.
Oxybenzone is the one ingredient that is still up for debate, and since 2007 EWG has seen a rise in mineral sunscreens which are safer alternatives.
As a skin therapist and makeup artist, I get to see a lot of sun damage, including my own from sun bathing in LA as a teen. Not listening for a second to the warnings from my parents and elders about what happens if I burn too much. Now at 33, I am enlightened and prepared. Not only does the big SC (skin cancer) concern me, but struggling with melasma for the last 13 years also keeps me diligent. Having a raccoon ring of brown spots around your eyes to cover up on your wedding day like I did is no fun. Thankfully I was able to improve the discoloration with natural oils that contain citrus extracts for brightening, but looking back, how I wish I could have avoided it all together.
Sun protection for me comes in three ways. First defense, my skin care. I love zinc oxide in my makeup because it works as a block rather than a chemical screen, that absorbs the UV rays into the blood stream. The second is my wide brimmed hat. It's lovely and effective at keeping direct sunlight on my face. The SPF Scala Wide Brimmed Hats are my favorite because of the little wire that allow you to adjust it not only to block the sun, but in adorable angles. When I'm not wearing it, they are made to collapse and toss into your tote. The third is continuous spray sunscreen like the one we carry from Acure.
This one is Zinc Oxide based, has NO scent!!! Eureka!! and is water proof up to 80 minutes. When I see people get out their continuous spray screen at the beach I usually run to the water, so I don't have to inhale the plume of chemical fragrance that irritates my throat. I tested Acures last summer and fell in love!
Having my own little one, I pack a floppy hat for her to take to school and put this 100% Pure Baby SPF 30 sun screen stick that won't sweat off while she plays.
Depending on your skin type and wether you burn easily, you can spend up to 20 minutes in the sun and get a good dose of vitamin D without worry, however any more than that and the risk for sun damage rises quickly.
One of my closest friends recently had a skin cancer spot removed, and still has the scar to show for it right on her forehead. Three of my neighbors have had spots, my dad, my hairstylist, even I have my own spot on watch by my dermatologist near my temple! The removal of these spots is no small matter and can easily change the landscape of your face.
Having a big hat and sun protection as a matter of habit can help with avoiding potential issues down the road and ensure your skin stays beautiful!
Do you have a favorite hat, or sun protection method. Leave your comments, or post a photo! Happy Spring!