Tank tops. Shorts. Sundresses. What else are you and your kids donning in the mornings? Right, it's summer, more heat, less clothing...which means more exposure to those harmful rays. Standing in front of all of those bottles of sunscreen, well, it can be rather daunting. The numbers, the different claims...what's best for your skin and that skin of your kiddos? Here's a mini round-up of some guidelines to think about as we head into sunscreen season!
-- Reapply....do it!! Reapply more often than you think you need to. You have to reapply every two hours, even if you haven't gotten wet. And though the bottle may say water-resistant, that doesn't mean waterproof. Sweat, pool water, sprinkler drops all wash away that coat of lotion. Add in some towel-drying-off, and you've completely removed anything you may have applied just an hour ago.
-- Give it time to soak in. This means applying before you are at the pool or beach. Good rule of thumb? Do it at home, before you head out the door.
-- What's a good number? At least 30 some docs say, while others go for 60. Whatever number you use, the same rules apply in terms of applying every two hours and more so when in the water.
-- The rays don't need sun. Even in cloudy weather, you can get skin damage. Those UV rays go through anything...they are stealth, you can't see them, folks. So when your shoulders are exposed with that strapless maxi dress, you are exposing them to UV rays, even when it's overcast.
-- Put on enough to cover your body. Really. Start at the top of your body and work your way down. And, yes, you may go through more than one bottle a season, maybe even two. If you are using the same bottle as last year, you definitely need to use more (and toss that old one - sunscreen does expire).
-- Think beyond the bottle for protection. You and your kids need hats, light layers, and sunglasses to truly protect your skin and keep it healthy. Beach umbrellas and shady areas are your friends, my friends!
What kind of sunscreen do you like? What number do you use -- 30? 40? 60?