I am increasingly becoming aware of the importance of a good quality sunscreen for multiple reasons. Having recently moved to Australia from Canada where the sun does not hit as harshly on the skin, being seriously pale in complexion due to the Irish in my family (Thanks!) and simply wanting to be more health conscious overall with protecting my skin. I thought this could be a little bit of a useful read for those of you who share my thoughts on wanting to be health-conscious when comes time to protecting yourself from those rays.
Let's uncover some key differences between mineral-based and chemical-based sun protectors.
As my research on this topic is not yet extensive, we will simply cover basics in terms of these two types of sunscreens for today. Below are some key characteristics and differences between each sunscreen type.
- Are not absorbed into the skin and reflect UV rays for broad-spectrum protection
- Do not degrade when exposed to UV rays
- Effective immediately upon application
- Absorb UV rays into the skin and contain potentially harmful chemicals. (Refer to this link for a list of all potentially harmful chemicals)
- Can degrade when exposed to UV rays
- Require a 20-minute waiting period to be effective
The most commonly used mineral-based sunscreen is zinc oxide. This mineral sunscreen protects against the entire spectrum of both UVB and UVA rays, which cannot be said of the other sunscreens.
As far as I know, I have always used a chemical-based sun protector. I have simply never taken the responsibility of properly researching which sunscreens to avoid and which to use. But the more I read and research on these, the more it is becoming evident which are the best options. I am in big need of going to my local chemist and stocking up on new sunscreen for the hot season ahead.
Here is a great article which relates perfectly with what we have discussed above when relating to which sunscreen products to use in order to keep your skin and the environment safe and healthy. Also, let's not forget their are chemical-based sunscreens which are highly toxic to our sea life and destroying our coral reefs. In the above link, you will also find key brands which operate under strict guidelines making sure to be environmentally friendly in preserving our oceans.
There is SO much out there in terms of information good and bad so it can quickly become overwhelming to research such things on our own. Take it one piece of information at a time, one product at a time and don't hesitate to speak to your local pharmacist or doctor about which sunscreens are best available to us. Now that summer has officially begun, let's be responsible and protect our skin for today and the future.
FYI. Did you know that Le Tan has zinc sticks of various colours? Sport your favourite colour on your body when playing your favourite beach sport and start a trend!