The Pool Owners’ Guide to Choosing Sunscreen

Long summer days are the best. You may be lounging by the pool for hours, getting your perfect tan while you watch the kids swim and play under the sun. But wait, it’s not the ’80s anymore, folks! Thankfully, our awareness of the effects of overexposure to the sun’s rays has increased dramatically in recent decades. So, protect yourself while you soak in the summer with quality sunscreen. Not all products out there give equal protection. Separate fact from fiction with this; the pool owner’s guide to choosing sunscreen:

What Does “Broad Spectrum Protection” Mean?

The law requires sunscreen bottles to list whether they offer “broad spectrum protection.” This means that they guard against UVA and UVB rays. UVB rays are the most commonly known, and any sunscreen you find will protect against them. However, UVA rays are also harmful at higher levels of exposure, so it’s important to choose a sunscreen that will shield you from both.

What Does “SPF” Mean and Why Does It Matter?

That “SPF” number on the front of your sunscreen bottle denotes Sun Protection Factor. Think of it as a multiplier; SPF 20 generally protects you from getting sunburned 20 times longer than if you wear no sunscreen. However, there is a point of diminishing returns. For example, SPF 60 only gives you an added 2-3% protection as SPF 30. The difference in price beyond SPF 30 is usually much greater than the difference in protection. A product with SPF 30 that includes zinc oxide as an ingredient may be much more effective than a product listed at SPF 60 without zinc. 

What’s the Deal with Zinc Oxide?

Zinc oxide is a natural ingredient that acts as a reflective barrier, or mirror, to the sun’s rays. Zinc is like your shiny shield that redirects those rays before they penetrate the skin. Choose a sunscreen with zinc oxide listed in the ingredients for maximum protection.

Developing Sun Safe Habits

No sunscreen is completely waterproof. Hence, the bottle is required to say water-resistant rather than waterproof. Use a water-resistant sunscreen if you plan on swimming. Just don’t forget to reapply every so often, depending on whether the bottle says 40- or 80-minute protection. 

Shade is your friend. A nice shady spot is essential for a long afternoon spent out in the sun. Wearing UV protective clothing is also an effective method of protection, especially for infants. 

At Backyard Oasis, we want you to enjoy your summer to the fullest. That’s why we provide you with the best information to stay safe and keep the good times rolling. We have amazing deals on inground and above ground pools right now, as well as pool maintenance services and accessories galore. Come by our showroom at 2200 US Hwy 190 W in Livingston, Texas to learn more! You can reach us at (936) 241-0585. Have a fantastic summer!