If you're like me, you may have mixed feelings about summer.
The good: BBQs, beach chairs, fizzy drinks, friends.
The bad: Looming potential of getting scorched by the summer sun.
Previous sun sins
My childhood and teenage years were filled with numerous sunburns and over-exposure.
I wince when I think back of hours spent in the pool without sun protection. There's not much I can do to change the past, but there's a TON I can do to protect myself today.
Before launching into methods to protect ourselves from the sun, there are benefits of getting some exposure -- like Vitamin D!
Vitamin D performs a plethora of functions in the body:
- Promotes calcium absorption from our food in the small intestine and increases calcium levels in the body
- Alongside Vitamin A, helps aids immune system, skin health and eyesight
- Alongside Vitamin K2, deposits calcium into our bones
- Alongside magnesium, maintains calcium balance and aids in muscle contraction and relaxation
There's a balance between too much sun and not enough sun. Once we get our 10-15 minutes, it's time to lather up!
Trash the Toxic 'screen
These chemicals are also found in common drugstore sunscreens. Sunscreens with the ingredient oxybenezone or “-benzone" are associated with biochemical and cellular level changes including endocrine disruption, allergy/immunotoxicity and organ system toxicity.
The active ingredients in a chemical sunscreen work by absorbing the rays rather than blocking or scattering them.
My favorite Non-toxic Sunscreen
Zinc-based, mineral sunscreens are an effective, non-toxic alternative to chemical sunscreens because the zinc sits on top of the skin and acts as a physical barrier to scatter and reflect the UVA and UVB rays.
Here are my favorites:
This stick is small and fits in my tiny purse. I use it on my face, arms and décolleté when I've either forgotten to apply sunscreen, or I've been out in the sun for a while and need a sunscreen refresher. It's kid-friendly and great for kiddos who don't love to be lathered in lotion sunscreen. It contains organic coconut oil and acai fruit oil to help hydrate the skin. The best part -- it has an EWG rating of 1 (which is like the toughest teacher in school giving you an A on your final paper).
I wear this sunscreen nearly everyday under my foundation. It doesn't even feel like I'm wearing sunscreen -- no white residue, no telltale smell. It's like a hydrating lotion and I feel confident in wearing it everyday because I know I'm not placing hormone-disrupting chemicals on my skin! Just like the stick, it has an EWG rating of 1!
Sunscreen should be our last tool for sun protection. Here are some other ways to stay protected from the sun:
- Wear clothes & a hat
- Find shade
- Plan activities around peak hours. Go outdoors in early morning or late afternoon.
- Wear sunglasses!
Interested in more non-toxic skincare products?
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