In 2018 Consumer Reports rated 73 sunscreens for their ability to protect our skin.  Sunscreens may help reduce the frequency and severity of tanning and burning, thus reducing the risk for skin cancer and signs of aging over the long term.  Consumer Reports testing found that 24 of 73 tested sunscreens offered less than half the degree of protection advertised on the container. Products labeled “mineral sunscreens” and “natural” with only titanium dioxide or zinc oxide were less likely to work as well as chemical sunscreens containing products such as avobenzone.  Recommended sunscreens are published on


            Shake bottles prior to use in order to mix the ingredients.  Then apply approximately one teaspoon of lotions to each body surface 15-30 minutes before going outside.  Finally, reapply all types of sunscreen every two hours when outside. 


            Please use sunscreen in conjunction with other proactive steps that minimize tanning and burning.  For example, consider purchasing hats, clothes, and swimwear made of fabrics that block ultraviolet light.  Companies such as Coolibar, SunGrubbies, Sun Precautions, and LL Bean sell effective and stylish versions of these items on the internet.  Please also consider avoiding intense sun whenever possible to reduce the likelihood of tanning and burning.  Implementing a comprehensive plan may provide your greatest hope for avoiding skin cancer and signs of aging.