I didn’t know any better. Every summer, I lathered my fair and super sensitive skin kids up in the highest SPF sunscreens I could find to keep them safe in the sun. Turns out, I may have been doing more harm than good. Want to protect your family from the sun this summer?
Protect Your Family This Summer
My oldest daughter has very fair, sensitive skin. She struggles with eczema and irritation year round. In the Winter, the heater and dry air causes dry patches. In the Spring and Fall, her allergies causes eczema. And in the Summer, no matter how many sunscreens I tried, they all irritated her skin. We lived down the street from the beach, and this was the box of sunscreen in my garage. Guess which one is the least safe? You’ll be surprised… I certainly was.
Research Sunscreens at EWG
The Environmental Working Group publishes an annual report reviewing and rating sunscreens for safety. Many of the sunscreens you find on retail shelves at your local super market or pharmacy, especially those with high SPFs, in convenient aerosol sprays, and even those marketed as Baby or for children, contain toxic chemicals linked to hormone disruption and reproductive toxicity, organ damage, cellular changes, and cancer. They also cause skin irritation.
High SPFs are dangerous, because while they may protect against sunburn (UVB rays) for longer periods of time, they may be less effective against blocking just as harmful UVA rays. Convenient aerosol sprays often introduce additional harmful chemicals with the added risks of inhalation.
Active Sunscreen Ingredients
The active ingredients in sunscreen – the ones that protect you from the sun – come in two forms: chemical filters and/or mineral filters. The most common sunscreens contain chemical filters. And the most dangerous of these is oxybenzone. It causes high rates of skin allergy, and mimics estrogen when absorbed into your body, causing hormone disruption. It has been associated with endometriosis in women. Generally, the mineral filters, zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, are much safer, as they are not absorbed by the skin.
Additionally, many sunscreens, and personal care products more broadly, contain parabens. They are commonly used as a preservative, and also linked to hormone disruption.
I was shocked that the Aveeno Baby sunscreen was the worst rated of the bunch out of my box! Want to find the rating on your family’s favorite sunscreen? Look it up in EWG’s Skindeep Database.
Protect Your Family with Safer Sunscreen
So if all of those mainstream brands and high SPFs are bad, what should I be using? Beautycounter’s Protect All Over Sunscreen SPF 30. It uses zinc oxide as its active ingredient, and receives a 1 rating from EWG, placing it in their top tier of sunscreens rated for 2015. Their 2016 report will be released later this month.
Want to learn more?
Learn more about Beautycounter, its mission of safer, better beauty for you and your whole family, and all the personal care products you need to get ready for summer at my Spring into Summer Social, now through April 20th! Participate to earn a chance to win a Beautycounter Sunscreen Stick, great for face applications! All purchases over $50 will also be elgible to win the host rewards, up to 5 FREE products and 5 products at 50% off, depending on total social sales!
Beginning April 6th, I will be sharing my Beautycounter story, how it has saved my daughter’s skin, and is now used by our whole family. Because when you know better, you do better. I’ll also be sharing all my favorite must-haves for summer!
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