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How to Use Sunscreens Correctly (Hint, you probably aren’t!)
July 16, 2019
By Admin

The summer sun has arrived, and so has the need to review your sun-safety habits. 

Consumer Reports’ Best Sunscreens of 2019 ratings is now available, along with helpful articles about different ingredients and tips for safe use. 

Consumer Reports (CR) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to unbiased product testing, investigative journalism, consumer-oriented research, public education, and consumer advocacy. Every year, CR tests and provides ratings on sunscreen. 

In recent years, CR has raised concerns regarding the accuracy of specific sunscreens’ indicated sun-protection factor (SPF), and safe use of spray sunscreens. When determining what sunscreen to use, 211 LA recommends utilizing the CR ratings to identify the safest product.

Once you have selected the best sunscreen to use, it is important to review the product’s recommended use information for the proper amount and frequency of application. In order for sunscreen to be effective, you must continue to reapply throughout the day, with the recommended best practice being to apply sunscreen every two hours.

While sunscreen helps protect you against the harmful effects of the sun, sunscreens are not 100 percent effective. It is always a wise idea to cover up if and when you can, and avoid alternative sunscreen products such as towelettes, shampoos, body washes, SPF wipes and insect-repellent combinations - they are frequently not applied enough to provide protection, and if they are they may increase your exposure to other harmful chemicals. 

When going out in the sun, remember these tips:

-Use enough sunscreen - a fingertip-sized blob won’t do. A teaspoon-sized blob to properly cover your face and neck.

-Reapply sunscreen - sunscreens need to be reapplied every two hours.

-Wear a hat, sunglasses, and long sleeves -  this can significantly reduce the areas that are exposed to the sun, in particular areas around the eyes that are common spots for skin cancer.

-Seek shade - can also reduce the areas that are exposed to the sun.

-Don’t rely on makeup with SPF! - Be careful relying only on moisturizer or makeup with SPF - people generally don’t use enough for it to be effective - they should be used with a sunscreen to make sure you’re protected. read more

Sunscreen Glossary:

-SPF 15- blocks 93% of UVB rays

-SPF 30- blocks 97% of UVB rays

-SPF 50- blocks 98% of UVB rays

-Broad spectrum- means the product contains ingredients that help shield the skin from ultraviolet (UV) A and B. Any broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher will help to protect from skin aging and skin cancer. 

-Water resistant- means the sunscreen has been tested and will maintain its SPF levels for 40 minutes while swimming or sweating.

-Sport-marketed sunscreen- marketed to people who want a sunscreen that stays during outdoor activities but this term is not regulated by the FDA.

-Baby or kid-marketed sunscreen- you often see this label on sunscreens designed to be less irritating to young skin.