Over the last several weeks I have been writing this column filled with information about sunscreen. This topic in general has been a “hot” subject in the news for the last couple of years. There is tons of information out there regarding the protection of our skin from the obvious hazards of the sun, and plenty of controversy.

Over the last several weeks I have been writing this column filled with information about sunscreen. This topic in general has been a “hot” subject in the news for the last couple of years. There is tons of information out there regarding the protection of our skin from the obvious hazards of the sun, and plenty of controversy. The Environmental Working Group’s website offers a ton of information for someone who wants to do homework on sunscreen, along with a clear comparison list of the best sunscreens of 2010, a way to look up the sunscreen you already own and the Hall of Shame, which is the list of sunscreen that simply don’t cut the mustard with this watchdog group.

On the other hand there are several articles out there, including the Skin Cancer Foundations’ own website that offers a statement regarding the EWG’s 2010 reports. They don’t agree with the EWG’s report on retinyl palmitate (vitamin A). It’s complicated (just like the movie), but basically the EWG is using a government study to say that this ingredient can actually be cancer causing, and the opposition is saying the study might not be correct as well as showing concern that people will stop using sunscreen all together for fear that it will actually harm them. So, as usual I will suggest that you do your research and read information, from both sides before you make a purchase. I personally found it all to be very helpful.

One thing is completely clear to me. No matter how strict you want to be with your choice of sunscreen, it is still very, very important to protect our skin. Even if you don’t care about how you might look as you age, there are still important health consequences we will have to endure if we don’t protect ourselves while we are outdoors. So however you choose to do this, please just do it. I would hate for all of us to be wandering the earth years from now wrinkled and withered with hunks of skin and body parts carved off of us from skin cancer removal… Yuk!

Take the time now and by all means protect your children as well. We have come along way from slathering our bodies with a concoction of baby oil, iodine and something that smelled like bananas! So, mamma, I guess we are evolving a bit.

Have a beautiful day!