Being a blue-eyed blonde of Irish, Scottish, and Norwegian descent living in sunny California, I use a ton of sunscreen. My skin is so fair that it's been charitably described as "porcelain", and less charitably so as "mozzarella". Mix in my DH's Irish, English, and German heritage, and our kids are doomed to also burn rather than tan in the sun without the use of sunblock. I slather it on them any time they'll be outside for longer than a few minutes.
So naturally, I was concerned when I saw an article on CNN.com that new tests show that 4 out of 5 sunscreens on the market don't adequately protect their users, including almost all of the best-selling brands.
I took a look at the website of the sponsors of the study, the Environmental Working Group to find out more information. So here are the top 10 most effective sunscreens according to the EWG report along with their unit cost according to a quick Google search:
1. Keys Soap Solar RX Therapeutic Sunblock. $7.93/oz. ($26.95 for 3.4 oz.)
2. TruKid Sunny Days Facestick Mineral Sunscreen. $16.67/oz. ($10.00 for 0.6 oz.)
3. California Baby Sunblock Stick No Fragrance. $25.98/oz. ($12.99 for 0.5 oz.)
4. Badger Sunscreen. $5.52/oz. ($16.00 for 2.9 oz.)
5. Marie Veronique Skin Therapy Sun Serum. $99.00/oz. ($99.00 for 1 oz.)
6. Lavera Sunscreen Neutral. $4.99/oz ($32.95 for 6.6 oz.)
7. Vanicream Sunscreen. $3.50/oz. ($13.99 for 4 oz.)
8. UV Natural Sunscreen. $10.59/oz. ($18.00 for 1.7 oz.)
9. Sun Science Sport Formula. $7.32/oz. ($21.95 for 3 oz.)
10. Soleo Organics All Natural Sunscreen. $9.61/oz. ($24.99 for 2.6 oz.)
Compare those prices with what I normally use: No-Ad Baby Sunscreen, which costs about $0.63/oz. ($10 for 16 oz.) This showed up on the EWG's "avoid" list. Wonderful. So just when our family is feeling the pinch from $4.55/gallon gas, skyrocketing grocery bills, and all the co-pays and cost-shares related to this latest pregnancy, now I'm supposed to shell out at least 5 1/2 times as much for sunscreen :-(
I think this is one of those things I'm going to just have to file under the category of "what I'd really like to do if we only had the disposable income to afford it".