May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month – Here’s Our Top Sunscreen Choices for Protecting Your Skin this Summer

The kickoff to summer is just a couple weeks away, and soon our weekends will be filled with sunny beach days and tropical cocktails poolside. While the month of May customarily marks the first sign of warmer weather, it’s fitting to also be Skin Cancer Awareness Month – an important opportunity to educate and spread awareness about the dangers of unprotected sun exposure. With more than five million cases diagnosed in the U.S. each year, skin cancer is America’s most common cancer – as well as one of the most preventable ones. With skin care being at the forefront of our business and a core foundation for beautiful skin, we cannot stress enough the importance of protecting your skin from harmful UV rays.

As we prepare for a summer of excursions (or relaxations) outdoors, now is the time to think about which sunscreens you’ll be reaching for to protect your skin this summer. From SPF strength to ingredients to look out for, Natural Elegance Beauty MedSpa owner and Physician Assistant Heather Parlett, PA-C breaks it down for you, as well as recommends some of her favorite formulas:

“When looking for a sunscreen, SPF does matter. I recommend at least an SPF 30 or higher for optimal protection against harmful UVA (Ultra Violet Aging) and UVB (Ultra Violet Burning) rays. UVA rays are longer rays that are associated with skin aging, while UVB rays have a shorter wavelength and are associated with causing skin cancers. An SPF 30 blocks 97 percent of harmful rays, while anything beyond that will protect against slightly more rays, but nothing provides 100% protection. Increase protection by sticking to the shade out of direct sunlight, as well as wearing protective hats and clothing.

I recommend sunscreens that offer multiple benefits while protecting against both UVA and UVB rays. Some of my personal favorites are Intellishade sunscreen by Revision for women and Daily Sheer Broad Spectrum SPF 50 by ZO Skin Health for both men and women. Intellishade sunscreen hydrates, brightens, protects and conceals utilizing antioxidants and anti-aging peptides. ZO Daily Sheer sunscreen hydrates while leaving a sheer finish, is water resistant and protects against not only UVA and UVB rays, but further protects against high energy visible light and infrared rays from our indoor lights and electronic devices.

Some ingredients to look for when choosing a good sunscreen are Titanium Dioxide and Zinc Oxide, which provide both UVA and UVB protection. Other active chemical ingredients are Octinoxate and Octisalate, which provide only UVB protection. For sensitive skin types, it may be best to avoid sunscreens with chemicals and stick with pure physical sunscreens utilizing Zinc and Titanium Oxides.”

– Heather Parlett, PA-C, Owner of Natural Elegance Beauty MedSpa.

*Both Intellishade and ZO Daily Sheer Broad Spectrum SPF 50 are available for purchase at Natural Elegance Beauty MedSpa.