Sun Sun Sun!

New Englanders have been complaining about the winter forever.  Even friends of mine in far off lands have commented to me on our struggle against the fluffy white.  Attractive happy woman joying in beautiful summer day.

Not anymore folks! The sun is out in Massachusetts and we’re soaking it up. We’re out in force, filling up the parks and playgrounds, riding bikes, hiking, and playing in the ocean well before we really should. The sun makes all the difference here, and I think we do spring better than anyone- we deserve it, right?!

Yet heading out into the sun can be complicated.  On one hand, the sun is a source of much-needed vitamin D and generally makes us feel good.  On the other hand, folks can easily burn when it gets strong enough.  While burning isn’t good for anyone, some sun exposure is great for health.

In order to limit burning, I suggest getting early season sun so that your skin has a base tan during periods of low intensity.  As the sun gets stronger, limit sun exposure to the mornings and late afternoons always avoiding the sun midday.

Yet it’s hard to avoid burning at the beach and light-skinned folks can have a hard time even on a normal afternoon.  For those situations I recommend either clothing and sunscreens where your clothes don’t cover.  Please remember, not all sunscreens are made equal!  Remember that your skin is not a barrier and so anything you put on it goes directly into your body.  I suggest putting nothing on your body that you wouldn’t/couldn’t eat.

Fear not- you don’t have to make sunscreen yourself, rather there are several brands that fit the bill. The place to go is the Environmental Working Group (EWG).  They’ve done a great job vetting the hundreds of brands out there, and they’ve ranked them all.

Here is a list of the brands that meet the EWG criteria.

Here is a list of brands that you should definitely avoid.

Do you research and enjoy those great outdoors!

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