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Sunshine and Selfies: Why Sunscreen Should Be Your Summer BFF

Sunshine! It means beach days, barbecues, and that perfect summer glow. But hold on a second, before you soak up those rays like a human sunflower, let's talk about protection. The sun, while amazing for our planet, can be a little harsh on our skin.

That's where sunscreen comes in as your ultimate summer BFF! Think of it as a superhero shield, deflecting those invisible UV rays that cause sunburn, wrinkles, and even skin cancer. 

As the Mom of a Lifeguard, sunblock is an important item in our home.  This year, on a cloudy day, my son forgot to apply sunblock to his feet while sitting in the stand. The result was second degree burns and he was out of work for almost two full weeks! It was so painful and a learning moment for him.  Please pay attention to all the suggestions in this article so no one you love has to deal with a painful burn. 

Here's why sunscreen deserves a permanent spot in your beach bag:

Sunburn Slayer: Sunburn isn't just painful, it's a sign your skin is taking a beating. Sunscreen helps prevent that angry redness, keeping your skin happy and healthy.

Forever Young: Sun exposure can make you look older than your years. Sunscreen helps prevent wrinkles, fine lines, and age spots, keeping you looking fresh and fabulous.

Daily Defense: UV rays are sneaky as they're around year-round, even on cloudy days. Sunscreen is your daily defense, protecting your skin no matter what the weather throws your way.

Now, let's pick the perfect sunscreen for your summer adventures! Look for one labeled "broad spectrum" to block both UVA and UVB rays. SPF 30 or higher is your best bet, and don't forget to be generous with application! Slather it on all exposed areas 15 minutes before heading out – don't skimp on those ears and neck!

Sunscreen Savvy for All Ages:

Babies (Under 6 months): Limit direct sun exposure. Opt for shade, protective clothing and brimmed hats. If some skin is exposed, use a mineral-based sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher, after consulting your pediatrician. 

Young Children (6 months - Teens): Use broad spectrum sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher. Apply liberally 15 minutes before sun exposure and reapply every two hours, or more after swimming or sweating. Choose water-resistant formulas for active kiddos. 

Teens: Sunscreen can be a greasy hassle sometimes, we get it! Look for oil-free lightweight formulas that won’t clog pores. Remind teens about reapplication, especially after activities. There are also newer lotions that “feel” dry.

Adults: Don’t forget about yourself! Apply sunscreen daily, even on cloudy days. Consider different formulas for your face and body. Reapplication is key! 

Seniors: Mature skin can be more sensitive to the sun. Look for gentle, fragrance-free formulas with SPF 30 or higher. Regular skin checks are also important. 

Men vs. Women? Sunscreen is for everyone! While women may be more likely to use sunscreen regularly, men are also susceptible to skin cancer. There are many sunscreen options available for men, including lotions, sprays, and even facial moisturizers with SPF.

Sun Safety Beyond Sunscreen:

  • Seek shade during peak sun hours (around midday).

  • Rock a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses.

  • Wear lightweight, protective clothing.

By making these simple habits part of your summer routine, you can soak up the sun worry-free, keeping your skin healthy and your selfies looking flawless all season long!



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