Consumer Reports tests sunscreens

Henrietta Strickland
May 11, 2018

SPF is a measure of how well a sunscreen guards against ultraviolet B rays from the sun - the chief cause of sunburn and a contributor to skin cancer.

Consumer Reports has released its annual list of the best sunscreens on the market this year ahead of the upcoming summer season.

Spending all day outside in the summer can be great, but sunscreen is needed to protect against sunburns, wrinkles and skin cancer.

The area where the sunscreen was applied was then exposed to UVB light and examined by experts for redness.

Consumer Reports recommends applying sunscreen 15 minutes before one heads out so that the skin can absorb it properly before it is exposed to the UV rays.

Here are the top 4 sunscreen lotions based on Consumer Reports' findings. If you're looking for a sunscreen containing mineral ingredients, thinking they contain fewer chemicals - shop carefully!

Consumer Reports tested 73 lotions, potions, and sprays and found you can't necessarily believe everything on the labels. But what about water resistant sunscreens? As for water resistant sunscreens, don't make the mistake of thinking that water-resistant means waterproof.

The report warned consumers about claims on sunscreen bottles, including "sport", "dermatologist recommended", and "natural" or "mineral", that are not regulated by the FDA.

The report also pointed out that one should use about an ounce of lotion/spray to cover the entire body, including the often-overlooked areas such as the ears, upper back, back of the hands, and the top of the feet. So when you get out of the water, you have to reapply. "You want to aim for an SPF of 40 or above and you want to reapply about every two hours if the skin is dry, and more frequently if you're getting wet". If you're wondering if that old half used tube of sunscreen is still good, Consumer Reports says sunscreen is formulated to remain effective for at least three years. Check the expiration date. And if the environment is on your mind, be mindful that sunscreens with reef safe claims may not be as environmentally friendly as you think. "Every sunscreen is tested at the lab in the same way - and we use sunscreens we buy off the shelves, the way a consumer would".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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