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Sunscreen FACT or FICTION!

By Emily Henricksen

presented by 


With summer around the corner it’s time to get our sun safety facts in order asap!   Team BCB recently sat down with Coppertone’s Dermatologist Partner, *Dr. Nava Greenfield, (@drnavagreenfield), to get the FACTS straight and weed out all the FICTION.

Fact or Fiction: Higher SPFs are Better?

It is true that the higher SPFs will provide more protection from the UV rays of the sun, but not by as much as you might think. An SPF of 30 offers up to 97% protection while an SPF of 50 offers up to 98% protection. 98% is better than 97%, but past the 95% point you can assume you are getting the protection that sunscreen has to offer, and if you are looking for more protection, you may want to try other methods besides sunscreen.

Fact or Fiction: You need UVA and UVB protection

Definitely a fact and Coppertone has products that offer both! UVA and UVB represent different wavelength spectrums of ultraviolet light and both those wavelength parameters cause damage to your skin. In fact, we are now learning that UVC and visible light can also cause damage, resulting in aging, to your skin and your skin may benefit from protection against other wavelengths of light as well

Fact or Fiction: People with darker skin do not need to wear sunscreen.

This is fiction. Although the likelihood and risk of developing a skin cancer is lower amongst darker skin tones, UV rays still cause aging and discoloration in those skin types. For that reason and others, it is recommended that all skin types protect their skin with sunscreen.

Fact or Fiction: Sunscreen alone will protect you when you’re outside.

Fiction. Although sunscreen is an incredibly effective method of UV sun protection, it is only one piece of the puzzle. Other measures such as a wide brimmed hat, protection clothes, and sunglasses are also important parts of sun protection. I never leave home in the summertime without my hat!

Fact or Fiction: You only need to protect the parts of your body that are exposed to the sun.

This depends on how the covered parts are protected. If you have thick, UV protective clothes on, it may be redundant to apply sunscreen to those areas. But often when we are outdoors, what we wear changes throughout the day. I always apply sunscreen to some covered areas as well, knowing that I may take off a layer of clothes as the day gets hotter.

Fact or Fiction: I am wearing a waterproof sunscreen, I don’t need to reapply after I go swimming.

Fiction: Waterproof sunscreen is formulated to provide better protection when in the water or sweating, but there is no sunscreen that will be as effective after a long swim. No matter what you put on in the morning, you need to reapply it after you go swimming.

Fact or Fiction: Kids under 6 months typically should not wear sunscreen.

This is true. Their skin is so sensitive at that age and sunscreens are typically not tested on babies so young. It is better to protect them with shade, hats, and clothes.  Although, once the baby does turn 6 months, I recommend using Coppertone Pure & Simple Baby Spray because it offers 100% mineral sun protection which is ideal for a babies’ gentle skin.

Fact or Fiction: Sunscreen Expires

Fact. Everything with preservatives has a shelf life. The sunscreen may not be as effective after the expiration date and should not be used.

Fact or Fiction: Lotions are more effective than sprays when it comes to sunscreen.

Fiction. The efficacy of sunscreen depends on the amount you use and how evenly you apply it. Whether it is in lotion or spray form matters less than the amount you apply to your skin, if you rub it in evenly and how often you reapply. If you like to stay active like me, try out the NEW Coppertone Sport Mineral Spray which offers 100% mineral sun protection that stays on strong through sweat, water, and heat.

Fact or Fiction: I don’t need to wear sunscreen on a cloudy day.

Fiction. Even when the sky is overcast, the damaging UV rays still penetrate the clouds and hit your skin. Your skin needs protection from the sun every day- no matter the weather outside. The UV rays also travel through windows so wear protection when driving in cars and sitting at home typing on your computer in a room with windows!


*Dr. Nava Greenfield, M. is a dermatologist practicing at Schweiger Dermatology Group. She is a dedicated and detail-oriented dermatologist serving the community of Brooklyn, NY. Dr. Greenfield obtained her medical degree from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University. Dr. Greenfield treats a range of conditions, and she is eager to help the wider community receive the care they deserve.


Stay tuned for more sun safety and be sure to tune in on Tuesday, May 18 for a special edition of Meet the Brands with Coppertone – live on Facebook!


THE CONVERSATION NEVER STOPS AT BUMP CLUB AND BEYOND! Stay tuned for more from the Bump Club and Beyond Team to help you prepare for and navigate your way through parenthood.  Make sure you’re following us on Instagram and Facebook  for more ideas as we navigate parenthood together. Looking for more from BCB?  Join the BCB Community (it’s FREE!) for access to exclusive discounts, webinar replays, free samples and so much more!  Information can be found here.

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