MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — There’s no question that sunscreen is the most important product when it comes to protecting your skin.
But selecting a product that is best for you can be overwhelming with so many options and variety of SPF levels. Dr. Jess Prischmann, a WCCO medical contributor, provided us with some tips on what to use and how much we actually need as we head out for the Fourth of July holiday.
So what is the most common misconception about sunscreen? Do we really need to wear it? Prischmann said most people realize they need to wear it to protect their skin, but the misconception is that sunscreen is really sun block.
“It’s really not. It doesn’t block out 100 percent of the sun’s UV rays. If you’re out on Lake Minnetonka and it’s a really bright, sunny day, you still get a tan and that should not come as a surprise,” Prischmann said. “You should still wear some protective clothing and a hat.”
Prischmann said the other misconception is that all sunscreen ingredients are created equal, and they’re really not. She said arguably the best sunscreen ingredient is zinc oxide. We tend to look at the front of a bottle of sunscreen for the SPF protection level, but we really should be looking at the back to see what ingredients are in it.
Prischmann said when you’re looking for a sunscreen, generally you’ll want something SPF 30 or higher.
She said a big trend in sunscreen is brands that have antioxidants.
“Antioxidants and sunscreen are like peanut butter and jelly, they just go together,” Prischmann said. “Antioxidants protect against the environmental damage that the sun causes.”
There are types of sunscreen for pretty much everybody out there, Prischmann said. If you need help finding one, consult a skin professional.