It’s Labor Day and you have probably had a fun filled weekend. But are you doing everything you can to protect yourself from the sun?

On this holiday, you may want to do something exciting like go out to the beach or lay out under the sun before the fall comes into full season.

Just like how June 21st marked the official start of summer, Labor Day still carries the summer sun. And it’s natural to want to have hot fun for this extended weekend! However, too much sun can be harmful to you causing your skin to look dry, wrinkled, blotchy, and leathery; even worse, the sun’s most serious threat is skin cancer! One way to protect yourself from the sun’s UVB and UVA rays is to always wear sunscreen. Choosing the right sunscreen and understanding how to use it can help reduce skin damage.

For protection against UVB rays, The American Academy of Dermatology recommends that you choose a sunscreen that states the following on the label:

  • Broad Spectrum
  • SPF 30 or Higher
  • Water Resistant or Very Water Resistant

For protection against UVA rays, take a look at the ingredient label and make sure one of the following is listed:
Ecamsule, avobenzone, oxybenzone, titanium dioxide, sulisobenzone, or zinc oxide.

There are also organic, or natural, sunscreen options that work just as well. The component to look for in these is zinc oxide. Natural sunscreens with zinc oxide are a good option if you have skin problems, allergies, or opt for a natural product. Just make sure it is SPF 30 or higher and you are ready to be out and about.

The use of sunscreen brings up the common question of blocking Vitamin D. [Harvard Health has found that while sunscreen prevents sunburn by blocking UVB light, few people apply enough sunscreen to block all light, and use it irregularly to make an impact on vitamin d absorption.] – While interesting tidbit, unsure if to include.

The American Academy of Dermatology recommends that an adequate amount of vitamin D should be obtained from a healthy diet that includes foods naturally rich in vitamin D, foods/beverages fortified with vitamin D, and/or vitamin D supplements. Vitamin D should not be obtained from unprotected exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation. So don’t be afraid to apply and re-apply sunscreen, as needed.

Please see the attachment for more sunscreen information.

Remember to “Be Smart. Wear Sunscreen!”

By Cindy Lopez