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Natural vs. Chemical Sunscreen, Part 1: Safety, Origin, and Efficacy

The title of this post alone suggests this inquiry is not a fair fight. Most of us would choose a so-called “natural” product over a chemical one. But when it comes to sunscreen, there is a lot more to it. For this post, let’s assume that a “natural” sunscreen is, in fact, “natural” as you […]

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Natural vs. Chemical Sunscreen, Part 2: The Recommendations

In Part 1 of this series on natural and chemical sunscreens, I covered the basics.  Here, we see that relatively minor shifts in priority between efficacy and potential health risks yield starkly different results in evaluating sunscreens.  To show this, I compared product recommendations from Consumer Reports and Environmental Working Group.  These two organizations consider […]

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Natural vs. Chemical Sunscreen: What’s Up With That?

What is a “natural” sunscreen?  What is a “chemical” sunscreen?  Does it matter? Is sunscreen safe? Is it effective? I got these questions a lot when practicing, and I continue to get them from friends and family. Over the next few weeks, I will be putting up a series of posts providing some insights that […]

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Getting “Some Color”

That is how I used to refer to tanning. Although I think skin cancer, particularly melanoma, merits significantly more attention than it gets in the media and in primary care offices, I would say that the vast majority of people, at least in this country, realize that the UV radiation is the number one culprit. […]

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Skin Cancer, An Oxymoron: A Rising Problem in a Progressive World

There is a phenomenon in our midst – as technology and knowledge advance, skin cancer rates continue to soar. How can this be? Several factors explain this, such as increasing temperatures, thinning ozone layer, tanning beds, and improved skin cancer detection and reporting. But, in my opinion, as disappointing as the global weather changes and […]

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The Basics

Ultraviolet Radiation  UVB rays are high energy and are responsible for sunburn, while UVA rays are lower energy, are more constant year round, penetrate glass, and cause premature aging.  UVA rays also depress the immune system and are more linked to skin cancer, especially melanoma, than UVB.  In fact, UVA rays are more damaging to […]

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Our Family of Hats

And this is just half of my family’s collection. Fashionably sun savvy – Goorin Brothers.  

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May: National Skin Cancer Awareness Month

As summer fast-approaches, not only do May’s flowers bloom, but the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays also intensify, and daylight hours extend. So, it is fitting that May is skin cancer awareness month. Because bottom line – UV, in high doses, is a carcinogenic to the skin. While skin cancer is the most common form of […]

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The Sunscreen Aisle

I’d like to preface this post by saying that I do a bit of ranting! The sunscreen aisle in the pharmacy, especially if it’s a chain store, reminds me of the cereal aisle – come to think of it, of any grocery aisle – with its sheer abundance of products. This means that we consumers […]

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Who’s Got Your Back?

When it comes to lathering on sunscreen, until my late 20’s, I often neglected to protect my back. According to the American Academy of Dermatology (the Academy), I am like most people in this way. It is like most things in life – out of sight, out of mind. We may only see our backs to the […]

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