My maternal great-grandparents were Irish; my sons and I have inherited every once of their Irish skin…yep we are as pale as pale could get with out actually being albino. We burn, peel, and are still pale. That coupled with my paternal grandfather having skin cancer as well as several friends and co-workers has made me the sunscreen fanatic.

Before every run and before playing outside, everyone gets lathered up with sunscreen. With the recent changes in federal law regarding sunscreen labels, I thought it would be a great time to write about the best out there while we’re in the height of summer. However, I came away almost more confused than I was before the new laws. I would always go with the highest SPF I could find and usually stuck to the “baby” friendly labels so the whole family could use it.

We had been using our local grocery store’s (HEB) brand, HEB Solutions Sunscreen labeled for kids, SPF 70+, tear-free, waterproof, and sweatproof. While looking for a replacement we selected the same brand, labeled for baby, sensitive skin, SPF 60 broad spectrum, and it’s supposed to dry as a powder, thus not leaving you with the greasy feeling. I thought that would be a good thing…no…it’s not a good thing. It doubles the application time because you really have to work it across your skin, it has a wonky smell to it, and when you do start to sweat, you get a nasty residue on your skin. Let me be greasy from now on!


Two articles I did find somewhat helpful are ASK THE EXPERT: Would it be better to use a product that combines insect repellent and sunscreen, or two different products by Pierre George, MD and How to Choose the Best Sunscreen – and Use It Well by Renee Despres. My take-away is that something is better than nothing, don’t skimp on coverage, and reapply frequently.


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