Choosing a sunscreen that won’t harm you or the environment

Keeping Kids Safe

(CNN Newsource) – The FDA has called for more safety data on some chemicals in sunscreen after researchers found some of those chemicals might be seeping into your bloodstream, but it’s too early to tell if there are harmful effects.

As they work to get more answers, what are consumers to do?

If you’re looking for an alternative to chemical sunscreen this summer, environmental groups say look no further than mineral or physical sunscreens.

They are a big hit with estheticians like Tiffany Bioski, who works at SkinReMEDI in Atlanta.

“Chemical sunscreens under active ingredients will usually have three to five ingredients at the top. They usually say things like oxybenzone, avobenzone, octinoxate. With mineral sunscreens, the active ingredients are generally titanium dioxide and zinc. Those are minerals that come from the earth,” she said.

The Environmental Working Group, a source that puts out a yearly guide to sunscreens, calls zinc oxide the “gold standard” when it comes to protecting your skin from harmful UVA and UVB rays.

“You can’t see it but when you put it on they’re like tiny mirrored scales on your skin, and the way that they work is when UVA and UVB rays hit them, they deflect. So there’s no radiating, there’s no sheath over the top, there’s nothing to break you out,” Bioski said.

Plus, as a bonus, it also can be good for your skin.

“Zinc is an active ingredient in most physical sunscreens. Zinc is also ironically the active ingredient in diaper rash cream. Diaper rash cream is anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal, anti-bacterial,” Bioski said.

But don’t just rely on sunscreens to avoid a dangerous burn. The best way to protect yourself when out in the sun is to keep covered and stay in the shade.

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