Protecting Your Skin in Summer

Summer has arrived and beach weather is finally here in the Northeast USA.  There was an article about sunscreen last week in the New York Times that inspired me to write a post about sunscreen and skin care. I also just spent a weekend studying with Marnae Ergil about treating dermatological conditions with Chinese herbal medicine. So I guess I have skin on my mind.

The gist of the Times article was that we should be careful to select sunscreens that offer “broad spectrum protection”, that is they screen out UVA and UVB rays. Although there are some other helpful hints in the article, this news isn’t too earth-shattering. I think many of us have been using broad spectrum, sunscreens for years. A resource that I have found more helpful is the Environmental Working Group’s Guide to Sunscreen. The EWG is an amazing non-profit who, in their own words (which I agree with!):

 

“… is the nation’s leading environmental health research

and advocacy organization.  Our mission is to serve as a watchdog

to see that Americans get straight facts, unfiltered and unspun,

so they can make healthier choices and enjoy a cleaner environment.”

 

The EWG also publishes an incredible online guide called Skin Deep which rates and reviews the safety of all kinds of cosmetics, including: skin care products, hair care products, make ups, perfumes and oral care products. Their ratings are based on scientific research and they let you know if the research is high quality (or not) and if there are multiple studies that support the particular findings. If you are concerned at all about the products that you are putting on your body, I would bookmark this website and spend some time searching for the products that you already use. You might be surprised at what you find!