Sunscreen, sunscreen, sunscreen! One of my most favorite products to talk about. Not only because of it’s anti-aging properties but also because of it’s incredible ability to keep us from getting things like hyperpigmentation and skin cancer!
That’s pretty awesome if you ask me!
So many choices…
The hard thing about sunscreen is that there are so many options out there. I mean, a TON! There is spray-on SPF, sticks you can rub on, creams, they can even be made into foundations and powders… all kinds of stuff! But the real question is, are they all equally effective?
Well of course not! That would be too easy right? Not only are they less or more effective depending on if it’s SPF 30 or SPF 50 but it also has a lot to do with the ingredients.
Types of Suncreen:
There are two types of suncreens.
Chemical: that are organic and carbon based.
Physical: are not organic or carbon based.
But does the difference really matter? Again, YES!
There are two kinds of Ultraviolet rays that affect us: UVA & UVB
UVA – is the harsher ray. It can penetrate through glass (yikes!) and is responsible for skin cancer due the damage it causes to the DNA as it penetrates the skin. It also induces pre-mature aging and has a large role in hyperpigmentation.
UVB – has a shorter wavelength but still does damage. This is the ray that is responsible for sunburn. It also plays a role in skin cancer and hyperpigmentation as well.
This hurts my soul a little bit but did you know that many SPF’s are only UVB protective? Chemical (organic) sunscreens usually contain octinoxate, octisalate, oxybenzone, and octocrylene. While Octocrylene helps a little with UVA protection, the others do NOT. They only combat UVB rays.
Physical (non-organic) sunscreens have ingredients that better protect against both types of rays. Such as: Titanium Dioxide, and Zinc Oxide. Zinc oxide has the most coverage for both UVA & UVB protection.
There is another ingredient that can be found in sunscreens – Avobenzone. Avobenzone is the one ingredient that solely targets UVA protection but not UVB. Protection from both is vital to keep your skin healthy and happy! So wear that SPF! And look for sunscreens with Zinc or Titanium Dioxide!
XO – Lori