What’s with all the hype on sunscreen?

Yeah, it’s summer – slow to come here in the Philly area but it raged in with a 90+ degree 5 day heatwave over Memorial Day so we were all quickly reminded about the importance of sunscreen after spending time outdoors!  There has been a lot of hype and articles out lately about sunscreen, so I thought I’d share some of the resources and my thoughts.

Sunscreen Beach

I didn’t give sunscreen that much of a thought until I had a baby, and had to put sunscreen on him.  The first year, he was too little, they don’t recommend using sunscreen on them at all (which makes you wonder why…) and last year was the first year I had to really do my sunscreen investigation.  Turns out, there are a lot of unfriendly chemicals in sunscreen, kids are more vulnerable to these ingredients because they are smaller and have less sophisticated systems to remove the toxins – and 60% of whatever we put on our skin, is absorbed into our bodies, so it’s not just the spray that is inhaled when you are spraying yourself or you child (or from someone else spraying their child) it’s anything that you put on yourself too.

Sunscreen Kid

As a fair skinned person, I have been diligent about wearing sunscreen.  I’ve talked about this before on the blog too, but I did find that when I changed my diet and also started to focus on increasing my Vitamin D I noticed my tolerance for the sun increased…that I wasn’t getting as burned as fast or as easily.  Sunscreen is necessary for times when you’re going to be out in the sun for a long time, you can also cover up under shade, with a hat, and UPF protected clothes, as well as trying to plan around being outside during the strongest sun times of the day (10am to 2pm).  Sunscreen is another tool in your kit to help keep you safe and not get burned!

EWG Sunscreen Guide

Resources –

#1 Recommendation – Environmental Working Group (EWG) – 2016 Guide to Sunscreen – third party organization with the mission of educating and promoting safety, for food, products and more.  They also have a free app EWG’s Healthy Living App- download it!

Here are some recent articles that I’ve seen that were worth the read, ultimately you need to decide what is best for you and your family!

If you’re looking to order the Beautycounter sunscreen or sunscreen stick, you can order through me via the links.  Another great resources for many of the sunscreens in the EWG post and other resources is via Thrive Market – which I LOVE, you can get 10% off here.

What am I using?  I tried to make my own, homemade sunscreen but it didn’t work as well as I had hoped.  Right now I do a combination of safe, small doses of sun exposure (also to make some Vitamin D!) and cover up with UPF rated clothing.  I’m using the Alba kids sunscreen spray (which is a pump spray lotion, not aerosol), Kiss my Face sunscreen, Beautycounter sunscreen, and Loving Naturals sunscreen.  So far no burns!


About Laura Pappas

Laura Pappas is a health coach whose passion is achieving optimal health and fitness. Her health coaching approach helps busy people balance their lives, training, and food choices in a way that is easy and sustainable. She believes in the power of eating real, whole foods, avoiding processed sugar, and applying the principles of the Paleo Diet to modern living.

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