Things I've learned since becoming obsessive about my skin
  1. This was going to be a list about my favorite sun protection products but it had too many disclaimers. So now it's its own list - product list to follow.
  2. There are two types of sunscreens: physical and chemical.
  3. Chemical sunscreens use chemicals (duh) to absorb sun rays into your skin.
    There's many chemical ingredients that go into these kinds of sunscreens. These may cause irritation to people with sensitive skin (though I have relatively sensitive skin and have found ones that work for me).
  4. Physical sunscreens deflect/block sun rays from absorbing into the skin.
    There are two ingredients used in physical sunscreens - titanium dioxide and zinc oxide. These tend to be thicker and harder to absorb into the skin.
  5. Many people think physical is inherently better than chemical because it doesn't absorb chemicals and sun into the skin, which might protect your skin from the sun but may have other negative side effects.
  6. Also people think chemicals are scary
    But I personally love modern medicine and the advances of science
  7. I feel comfortable using both types.
    I suggest doing your own research to determine what you feel is best for you.
  8. Of course, regardless of sunscreen type make sure it's broad spectrum and prevents against both UVA and UVB rays.
  9. Other notes:
  10. Below SPF 15 has been proven to not protect against melanoma.
    If you're concerned about melanoma SPF 30 is your best bet. Nothing above 50 has been proven to have a significant impact, and it's likely to be more irritable to your skin. In fact, the FDA is in the process of trying to limit SPFs to 50.
  11. Spray sunscreen is 👎🏽
    The FDA encourages them to not be used on children, as you cannot control the dosage the same way as when you slather it on.
  12. Makeup with SPF (over SPF 15, with broad spectrum protection) is 👍🏽
    But if you use enough to protect you, and only if you're minimally onside, e.g. commuting to work on the train in Chicago in January 😎. Otherwise you need the big guns.
  13. Ok now I can get to the good stuff in my next list!
  14. Here's me cowering in fear of the sun in my first post-surgery escapade to Austin, TX
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    Note: hat, sunglasses, long sleeved cover up, one piece, shade, loner selfie because all my friends were in the sun. Taken to send to my mom.