Sunscreen Shopping

Tuesday , 26, June 2012 2 Comments

While planning for our trip this summer, I researched to find the best sunscreen for the kids.  I like to check the EWG (Environmental Working Group) Skin Deep Rating to narrow down which sunscreens to buy.  The EWG list changes every year so I check the website every year before I buy sunscreen to make sure that what I buy is the safest and most effective for my kids.  According to EWG, most sunscreens offer poor sun protection and include lots of toxic ingredients.  In order to choose an effective sunscreen without exposing your family to harmful chemicals, read the ingredients list and don’t just rely on the claims on the labels – they are often misleading.  Here are some guidelines from EWG to choosing a safe sunscreen:

  • Avoid oxybenzone.  Look for zinc oxide, titanium dioxide, Mexoryl SX, or avobenzone (3%).  Oxybenzone is a hormone disruptor and a skin allergen.
  • Avoid Vitamin A (retinyl palmitate).  According to EWG’s website, retinyl palmitate causes skin lesions and tumors to develop more quickly when applied to skin in the presence of sunlight.
  • Choose SPF 15-50.  SPF values above 50 do not offer much additional benefits and are misleading.
  • Use lotions only and avoid sprays or powders.  The tiny particles from sprays and powders may not be safe to inhale.
  • Choose Water-resistant for the beach or pool.

Also, don’t forget to follow basic sun safety tips:

  • Cover up, wear a hat, and/or stay in the shade
  • Avoid midday sun
  • Wear sunglasses
  • Use sunscreen everyday

Here are some good sun safety tips from EWG.

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2 Comments
  • Rachel says:

    This is a great resource, Chan! How about a ‘how to put sunscreen on a squirmy 8 month old’ post? 😉

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