Monday, July 6, 2009

Sunscreen smarts


Have you heard about the latest report from the Environmental Working Group that ranks 1,581 sunscreen products by efficacy and safety?

The bad news: Many of the most popular and affordable products had a dismal rating based on their lack of real protection or their inclusion of harmful ingredients such as oxybenzone. Of the 482 sunscreens tested, brands that rank in the "dangerous to use" category include most of the Coppertone products, as well as generic products from drugstores such as Walgreen's and CVS. Even my favorite brand, the Neutrogena Ultra-Sheer Dry Touch line, ranks in the middling range (mostly because it contains oxybenzone).

Yikes! So what's an outdoor lover to do? The best-rated products are, naturally, by far the most expensive. I'm going to buy some of these products -- such as the Badger SPF 30 -- for the most sensitive places on my body (e.g. face and chest), and continue using my favorite products for the rest of my body!

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