How safe is your sunscreen?

When I was a child (back in the dark ages), we didn’t seem to worry so much about applying sun cream on our skin.  I remember many occasions on family holidays when I would end up getting burnt and sometimes being in rather a lot of pain!  As a red head, I was particularly susceptible and would feel envious of friends who had gorgeous tans (I just went red, my skin would peel and I’d be white underneath).
We are now much more aware of the damage the sun can do to our skin.  We understand that exposure to the sun will give us wrinkles, but we also run the risk of contracting skin cancer.
For the  majority of us, these facts encourage us to slap on the sun screen at the first sign of a sunny day, and we will always make sure we have a good supply for our
annual holidays (especially if it’s a beach holiday).  Surely if you go for a high factor (SPF 30 or above) with UVA and UVB protection, you are safe and fully protected.  But have you ever stopped to check the ingredients in your chosen products?
Since becoming a Tropic Skincare Ambassador I have learnt a great deal about what goes into the products we put on our skin and I have to say that it is rather scary!  Not only do most of the high street brands contain toxic chemicals, which can cause more problems for our skin than they resolve, we also wash those chemicals into the water supply every time we bathe, which eventually reaches our oceans. 
Susie Ma (founder and co-owner of Tropic Skincare, along with Lord Alan Sugar) has done extensive research into the chemicals in our skincare products, and the results are quite staggering. 
Looking at the sun care products available on the high street, a high proportion include an ingredient called Oxybenzone.  The primary function of Oxybenzone is to absorb UV light (this is what actually
blocks the sun from your skin), but it is a highly toxic chemical.  Research has proved that it doesn’t just stay on the surface of the skin, it also penetrates the skin and enters the bloodstream.  There is strong evidence that Oxybenzone is also a hormone inhibitor, associated with endometriosis in woman, as well as potentially causing skin allergies. 
Healthy coral                                                 Bleached coral
This highly toxic chemical is also affecting our oceans.  It is estimated that every year, between 6,000 – 14,000 tonnes of sunscreen ends up in coral reef areas from swimmers, contributing to the bleaching and poisoning of those reefs.

Switching to mineral based sunscreens (such as the Tropic Skincare range) can turn this around, for the health of our skin and our oceans.  Research by the Environmental Working Group (EWG), in the US, shows that there is no risk of hormone inhibitors or skin allergies.  They are also much kinder to our oceans.

So, what will you be putting on you and your family’s skin this summer? 

My advice would be to check out the ingredients in your current brand (it will probably be in Latin), and if it has toxic chemicals, consider swapping it for a mineral based sun screen.
There’s a great app you can add to your smart phone called ThinkDirty, which allows you to check the EWG rating on lots of skincare products – you can even scan the bar codes while you’re out shopping to help you make healthy, safe choices for your family.
Find out more about the Tropic Skincare range of mineral sun care products here.  EWG rating on Tropic Skincare is 0 (the lower the number, the safer the product).
Contact me to book your pamper experience, free facial or borrow box of skincare products.

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