Picking the ‘right’ sunscreen isn’t as important as avoiding these 6 mistakes

Picking the right sunscreen is essential for skin protection, but avoiding these six mistakes can significantly improve its effectiveness.

Sunscreen alternatives: Many chemical sunscreens are absorbed into the bloodstream, prompting a safety review by the FDA; mineral sunscreens made from zinc oxide and titanium dioxide can provide a safer, non-irritating alternative.
* Mineral sunscreens physically block UV light and are better for sensitive skin.

Proper sunscreen application: Applying enough sunscreen is just as important as its SPF; skimping on application is a common mistake.
* Apply the equivalent of a shot glass (1.5 ounces) of liquid sunscreen to cover both body and face; reapply every 2 hours.

Make no assumptions: Higher SPF sunscreens don’t last all day and need frequent reapplication.
* Reapply even high SPF sunscreens every 2 hours, especially if swimming or sweating.

Be prepared for cloudy days: Clouds block only 20% of sunlight, making sunscreen necessary even on overcast days.
* Store sunscreen in cool, dry places; avoid hot car trunks or glove boxes.

Additional sun protection: Use hats with broad brims, sunglasses with 100% UV protection, and UV-protective clothing.
* Sunscreen is recommended for all ages and skin tones, except for babies under 6 months old.

View original article on NPR

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