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jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Sunscreen on 05/29/2011 07:26:46 MDT Print View

Got this from some environmental group, but I've also heard it other places


Sunscreens prevent sunburn but there's no consensus they prevent cancer or aging - maybe you're better off not wearing sunscreen.

You need 10 minutes of exposure several times a week to get vitamin D.

Best thing is to wear shirt/hat/pants.

Titanium and Zinc oxides provide the best protection with less chance they do harm. I've tried these but don't like them because they come off when you get sweaty and make a mess.

Avonbenzone is better. Oxybenzone may be more harmful.

There are a couple chemicals that may be better, used in Europe, not permitted in U.S.

FDA has not made any official regulations - for 33 years.

drowning in spam
(leaftye) - F

Locale: SoCal
Re: Sunscreen on 05/29/2011 07:31:01 MDT Print View

I got the Badger brand sunscreen based off of their report and I hate hate hate it. It smells odd, it's sticky and never blends in.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: Re: Sunscreen on 05/29/2011 07:48:26 MDT Print View

"I got the Badger brand sunscreen based off of their report and I hate hate hate it. It smells odd, it's sticky and never blends in."

+1. I stopped wearing sunscreen. I use some zinc oxide on my nose when warranted, but nothing other than that. Instead I've gone to wearing pants and LS shirts exclusively.

Ken T.
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: All up in there
Re: Sunscreen on 05/29/2011 08:39:52 MDT Print View

+1. I stopped wearing sunscreen. I use some zinc oxide on my nose when warranted, but nothing other than that. Instead I've gone to wearing pants and LS shirts exclusively.

+1 more. Don't forget a good hat.

jeffrey armbruster
(book) - M

Locale: Northern California
stop using sunscreen? are you kidding? on 05/29/2011 10:43:49 MDT Print View

Here's what my surgeon said: you don't mind if I just carve into your face for an hour with this scalpel, right? To remove your early stage cancerous melanoma? Because the other option is to let it spread. And once it does there is no treatment. My doctors have all agreed, this was caused by sun exposure starting 20 years ago or more. I was lucky. And now I don't care if my titanium sunscreen is yucky--are you kidding me?-- I wear it. And a hat.

Edited by book on 05/29/2011 10:50:14 MDT.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: stop using sunscreen? are you kidding? on 05/29/2011 11:15:39 MDT Print View

No, not kidding. That's why, as I said, I wear long sleeve shirts and pants. And of course a hat with attached 'cape' to cover my neck. I feel pretty safe.

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: Sunscreen on 05/29/2011 11:22:43 MDT Print View

"In an accompanying editorial, Phyllis Gimotty, Ph.D., and Karen Glanz, Ph.D., of the Center for Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine wrote: “To our knowledge, the trial’s findings are the first to provide strong evidence for a reduction in the incidence of invasive melanoma after regular application of broad-spectrum sunscreen in adults…. It is unlikely that another trial of comparable scope and rigor will be conducted in the foreseeable future.”

Furthermore, they wrote, although “the question of its efficacy with respect to melanoma prevention should no longer deter scientists or clinicians from recommending sunscreen use,” effective skin cancer prevention should also include avoiding exposure to ultraviolet rays, using clothing to shield skin from the sun, and performing regular skin self examinations.

“This study provides important evidence regarding the role of sunscreen use as part of a range of sun-protective behaviors that effectively reduce risk of melanoma,” commented Margaret Tucker, M.D., of NCI’s Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics."

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: Re: Sunscreen on 05/29/2011 12:03:07 MDT Print View

Speaking of someone that has had to deal with skin cancer (me), what Doug mentioned is correct. Long pants, long sleeve shirt and a hat that not only covers your noggin but one that also cover the back of the neck. I still will apply "some" sunscreen on areas that might get more sun. Prevenive care is very important. Please don't mess around with is dangerous

d k
(dkramalc) - MLife
skin cancer on 05/29/2011 12:12:50 MDT Print View

I've worn shirt/pants/wide-brimmed hat for the last 15 years or so while hiking (but usually no sunscreen on my face when wearing hats). Last year I had a skin cancer removed from alongside my nose. It left a deep hole a bit bigger than a pencil eraser next to my nose, which the surgeon covered up as best she could with a larger triangular flap that she cut from below that hole. So now I have a triangular scar next to my nose, about 3/4" long. If this sounds like your idea of fun, by all means go without sunscreen.

Needless to say, I've added sunscreen to my daily routine whether or not I am wearing a hat (though I feel like I'm closing the barn door after the horses have gotten out). Hats do not keep all the sun off your face when it isn't high noon.

Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
Neurtogena sunscreen on 05/29/2011 19:40:43 MDT Print View

Consumer Reports says (and I concur from experience) that Neutrogena sunscreen is teh most effective UVA/UVB sunscreen available. Their sunscreen, in SPFs to 70, has nanoparticles of screening agents and remains longer on your skin.

BUT, like all other cream sunscreens, you need to "slather it on" for it to be most effective.

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: Neurtogena sunscreen on 05/29/2011 21:41:11 MDT Print View

Neutrogena SPF's have gone up to around 100 or so. Their use of oxybenzone is what the EWG doesn't like so they don't get a good rating from them.

I've been using Neutrogena for several years and like it okay. The Badger sunblock looks interesting.

Edited by jshann on 05/29/2011 21:42:12 MDT.

Willie Evenstop
(redmonk) - F

Locale: Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem
Sunscreen on 05/30/2011 01:38:25 MDT Print View

I've been happy with kinesys sunblock.

jeffrey armbruster
(book) - M

Locale: Northern California
sunscreen on 05/30/2011 10:23:45 MDT Print View

I always thought that if I didn't get burned I was fine. Apparently cancer-causing sun rays don't necessarily burn your skin. The water-proof sunscreen that I was just barely using didn't block the full spectrum of rays. Now I know. For the stuff to work, you have to use titanium/zinc based sunscreen and really slather it on, as others have said. And re-apply. I used to think that this was a bother. Cancer, death, scar tissue is a bother. Applying sunscreen is a breeze.

Edited by book on 05/30/2011 10:26:27 MDT.

sunsreen on 05/30/2011 11:54:34 MDT Print View

Do some research...

Since sunscreen use became widespread about 20-25 yrs ago, skin cancer in the developed countries where sunscreen is used frequently has increased exponentially.

Skin cancer incidence in lesser developed countries that dont have high sunscreen use has stayed flat, no increase.

What is not known is why. It is possible that sunscreen itself contributes to skin cancer. The chemical compounds used create free-radicals when they absorb uv radiation, which may damage cells and start cancer.

Or, possibly because of sunscreen, people spend time in the sun they shouldnt. They have short-circuited their bodys early warning system (sunburn) which tells them to get out of the sun.

In any case, overall sunscreen really doesnt do anything to lessen skin cancer. There is NO basis in the data for that belief.

Wear long sleeves, long pants, good hat, etc and limit sun exposure.

drowning in spam
(leaftye) - F

Locale: SoCal
umbrella on 05/30/2011 12:10:36 MDT Print View

I'm surprised no one mentioned an umbrella.

Erik Danielsen
(er1kksen) - F

Locale: The Western Door
RE: Martin on 05/30/2011 19:45:28 MDT Print View

A third possibility is that severe burns and vitamin D deficiency (which most of the western world suffers, if they know it or not) are the real cancer risks and getting a healthy amount of sun exposure every day, not enough to burn severely (if at all), providing plenty of vitamin D, is the best way to avoid skin cancer.

Slathering a bunch of potentially carcinogenic chemicals on your skin and then baking them under UV rays that undoubtedly break them down into all manner of additional maybe-bad chemicals strikes me as an approach that should be HEAVILY tested by science before canonizing it as health gospel. It really hasn't been, unfortunately. Marketing, of course, couldn't care either way.

We did spend millions of years exposing most of our bodies to intense sunlight on a pretty regular basis. I know someone's going to see this and think (or post) "yeah and they lived about 30 years," but if that's the case then you'd probably benefit from delving deeper into your biological heritage. Too big a can of worms to open yet again into a thread on a different topic.

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Re: umbrella on 05/30/2011 19:49:01 MDT Print View

A. I have my hands on two trekking poles
B. An umbrella is NOT going to cover myself
C. Read option B

Sorry I will not go there. I have my coverage down pat.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Sunscreen on 05/31/2011 01:55:31 MDT Print View

Long sleeve shirt, pants, and hat are probably the best combination.

Bears might like the smell of you sunscreen too. :)

jeffrey armbruster
(book) - M

Locale: Northern California
sunscreen on 05/31/2011 10:15:36 MDT Print View

You can lead a horse to water but you can't make him (or her) put on sunscreen. Good luck with your "sunscreen causes skin cancer" theories. I'm sure that the military-industrial-sunscreen complex has all the doctors and researchers in their pockets.

Linda Vassallo

Locale: Eastbay
Sunscreen on 05/31/2011 11:55:13 MDT Print View

In addition to hat, long sleeves, long pants, and a hat with wide brim and neck coverage I also use Solumbra hand covers. These covers are light weight and cover the backs of my hands and wrists (protects my hands when using trekking poles)while causing no restrictions in hand use. They are not gloves and are held in place by 3 loops on their under-surface. Here is a link to the web page...

Edited by eastbayhiker on 05/31/2011 20:20:35 MDT.