COLUMBUS (WCMH) — As the summer sun starts to heat up, skincare experts are reminding people that sunscreen is more important this time of the year than any.
And with so many different brands and types to choose from, one local expert offered tips on how consumers can choose which ones are most effective.
“Three of the most important ingredients to look at on a label would be to make sure they’re SPF 30 or higher, you want to make sure they are ‘broad spectrum,’ which means they block [both] UVA and UVB, and you want to make sure they’re water-resistant,” said Dr. Frank Morocco, a dermatologist with OhioHealth.
Experts also recommend a gentler brand of sunscreen for children.
“For kids, we also recommend they use more of a sunscreen that’s going to be sensitive, usually with mineral-based,” Morocco said. “Mineral-based sunscreens are more of a physical blocking sunscreen, which is going to actually block the sun instead of absorbing it like some of the chemical sunscreens.”
He added that the FDA is still studying the potential risks of sunscreens that absorb UV rays.
But what if you’re at the beach or the pool? Morocco said water-resistant sunscreens are best no matter what type of activity you are taking part in.
“Water-resistant is important just because of sweat,” Morocco said. “Because of water, even if you’re not around water, it can come off. So, water-resistant is very important. One of the most important things is to re-apply sunscreen every two hours. Just because it’s SPF 100 doesn’t mean it stays on longer than an SPF 30. So, again, reapplying every two hours is important.”
And whether you plan to spend an extended period outdoors or not, experts said daily sunscreen use can provide additional benefits.
“I recommend using sunscreen on a daily basis,” Morocco said. “Even if you’re not going to be out in the sun. Anything that’s SPF 30 or higher can help with facial aging and also with sun protection.”
If you’re a parent, Morocco stresses the importance of making sure that your kids are not allergic to sunscreen or any of the ingredients in a particular sunscreen.
If someone is allergic to sunscreen, Morocco said it is usually to the chemical sunscreens, in which he recommends a sensitive skin, mineral-based sunscreen. He also recommends avoiding the sun at its most intense point between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.
As far as the most recommended sunscreen brands, Morocco recommends brands that “have good science behind them” such as Neutrogena, Cerave, and Cetaphil.