With the Charleston beach season approaching it is important to be up-to-date with the facts for 2013 sun protection and summer skin care. In 2011 the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) presented significant changes to sunscreen products. These changes were made in order to help us purchase the correct products for the protection we desire.
One of the most important adjustments was a stricter ruling on which products where allowed to present as “Broad Spectrum” on labels. Broad spectrum sun protection protects against UVA and UVB rays. UVA rays can prematurely age your skin, causing wrinkles and age spots, and can pass through window glass. UVB rays are the primary cause of sunburn and are blocked by window glass. If the products do not pass the broad spectrum testing they must now be labeled with “Skin Cancer/Skin Aging Alert: Spending time in the sun increases your risk of skin cancer and early skin aging.”
Another key update to labels is the time (in minutes) the sun block will protect you during swimming or sweating. Waterproof, sweat proof and the term sun block is no longer accurate. This will greatly help with knowing when to reapply to be sufficiently protected from the sun’s ray.
When applying sunscreen use enough to generally cover all skin that is not covered by clothing or not protected by UV shielded clothes (as we have mentioned before the sun’s rays can penetrate lower quality swimwear and materials). The American Association of Dermatology suggests, “Follow the guideline of “one ounce, enough to fill a shot glass”, which dermatologists consider the amount needed to cover the exposed areas of the body. Adjust the amount of sunscreen applied depending on your body size.” Make sure to apply AT LEAST a 30 SPF DAILY, and apply to dry skin AT LEAST 15 minutes before going in the sun.
We want everyone to enjoy our beautiful Charleston Summers, but to do it safely. When choosing sunscreen make sure to read the labels and choose the right one for your lifestyle and skin type. Germain RX offers a wide variety of Sunscreens for your specific skin type, including this wonderful Sheer Sunscreen for optimal protection with a hardly there feel.
And when preparing for a day out don’t forget about your lips! Lips are prone to skin cancer as well- purchase your chapstick with just as much caution and reapply often. 
Marguerite Germain