19 May, 2017
"This is why it's so important to choose a sunscreen carefully", says Trisha Calvo, Consumer Reports Health Editor.
The Trader Joe's and La Roche-Posay sunscreen were the only two products to receive a ideal overall score. This year, they reported that 20 of the sunscreens tested provided less than half the sun protection claimed on their label.
"Consumer reports does test it differently than they do in the lab when they're grading SPF".
Consumer Reports examined sunscreens for their the ultraviolet B (UVB) protection, ultraviolet A (UVA) protection, and then how much that level varied from the SPF, or sun protection factor, that was listed on the packaging.
Some of those mistakes are highlighted in new research published online today in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.
Researchers set up complimentary sunscreen dispensers at 10 information booths at the Minnesota State Fair, which typically draws more than 1.7 million attendees each August.
Myth: Skin cancer is not a common problem.
Tanning outdoors and in tanning beds can lead to contracting skin cancer, including melanoma. Most only did their face and arms.
Dr. Steve Xu, a dermatology resident at Northwestern, analyzed the top-rated one percent of Amazon.com's 6,500 sunscreens.
Twenty-six of those products - or 40 percent - failed to meet the three criteria.
Myth: Protecting my skin from the sun is time-consuming and not worth the trouble.
SPF levels only indicate the protection a sun cream offers against UVB rays, not UVA rays.
Through these articles, the Skin Cancer Foundation hopes to educate a wider audience on how they can lower their risk of acquiring this cancer by adopting a simple sun-protection routine, which includes regular application of sunscreen; covering up with clothing, hats, and sunglasses; and seeking shade in high sun.
Even when people get it for free, they still may not use sunscreen correctly because it requires more effort than other types of giveaways, said Dr. David Leffell, chief of dermatological surgery and cutaneous oncology at Yale School of Medicine.
For sensitive skin, choose a sunscreen with the active ingredients zinc oxide or titanium dioxide.
Although a parasol stops direct beams, it is no match for diffuse radiation - rays that have been scattered in all directions on their way to Earth, Texas researchers said. "To get the best possible sun protection, it's important to wear protective clothing, such as long-sleeved shirts and pants, and to apply sunscreen to all exposed skin, not just your face and arms".