Sunscreens by Consumer Reports

sunscreenWhen I was raising children and fixing up a house, Consumer Reports was an invaluable resource. I always was a member.  As soon as I had grandchildren, all of a sudden Consumer Reports became extremely relevant again.  My children were raising children and fixing up their homes.  I kept my membership.  You might consider getting a membership at Consumer Reports.

On the Today Show, Friday, May 24, 2013, sunscreen was discussed and the results of a Consumer Reports study on sunscreens were reported.  How timely.  Sunscreen is on my shopping list.  We are going to Disney with our grandchildren and need the best sunscreen.  This Grandma immediately went onto the online Consumer Reports.

Of course, the Consumer Reports tips are invaluable.

Bottom line

If you can’t find a recommended sunscreen, buy one that claims broad-spectrum protection, is water resistant, and has a claimed SPF of at least 40. We used to recommend 30, but given the performance of this latest batch, a claim of 40 makes more sense.

To use sunscreen properly and get the most protection from the sun, follow these tips.

Put sunscreen on 15 to 30 minutes before you head out into the sun. Most creams take more than 30 seconds to rub in.

For lotions, use at least 2 to 3 tablespoons to cover your body. For sprays, apply as much as can be rubbed in, then repeat.

 Reapply all sunscreen, regardless of its SPF, every 2 hours and again after you swim or sweat, since sunscreen can rub off or wash off during the day. (Some leave a residue on skin. Most sunscreens left stains that didn’t wash out of cotton, polyester, and rayon/spandex.)

 Limit your time in the sun, and if possible, wear protective clothing, a hat, and sunglasses.

 Check the expiration date. The FDA requires manufacturers to provide an expiration date or show that a product will remain stable (but not necessarily maintain its SPF) for at least three years. If you buy an undated sunscreen, mark the purchase date on the container and, to be prudent, toss it once it’s two years old.

 Don’t store sunscreen in a hot car-it may degrade faster. And skiers take note: Once frozen, sunscreens may lose effectiveness.

Before I go to the store, I now must clean out my cabinets of old sunscreen.  The results are a shock and will save me a lot of money.

Number one is Up and Up by Target, SPF 50, $6.94. Walmart is next with their Equate SPF 50 at $7.50.  Coppertone Water Babies SPF 50 at $11 is the top rated sunscreen for children! Walgreens Continuous Spray Sport SPF 50 at $8, Hawaiian Tropic Sheer Touch 30 at $11 and Coppertone Sport High Performance SPF 30 at $10 round out the top five recommendations.  California Baby SPF 30 is number six but at $20 is significantly more expensive than Coppertone Water Babies.

I am on my way to Target before they sell out!




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