There are downsides to sunscreen: it can be greasy, it’s annoying to have to reapply, and from time to time people will try to scare you into thinking it’s dangerous. (It’s not.) But you know what the upside is? It’s actually sunscreen. Pills and DIY coconut oil recipes are not.
The FDA recently announced that it is cracking down on companies that market supplements as having sunscreen-like properties.
In other words, these are items that claim to be a sunscreen in a pill, and have names like Sunsafe Rx. Let's be very, very clear: sunscreen does not come in pill form, and supplements can't prevent sunburns or skin cancer no matter what the label says.
Here are some more things that, despite what you may read on the internet, are not sunscreen:
- A "good paleo diet"
- Sesame oil
- Coconut oil
- Chicken oil
- Homemade mixtures of oils, beeswax, and zinc oxide powder
- Diaper rash cream (Yeah, it has zinc oxide, but that's not enough to make it an effective sunscreen!)
- This "no sunburn slushie" made with carrots
- Any of the products that google suggests when you search for "sunscreen pills"
Until science actually invents a magical sunscreen pill, you can protect yourself from both sunburns and skin cancer by applying a real sunscreen, and by using the time-tested technologies of hats, clothing, and sitting inside in the air conditioning.
Remember to 'slip, slop and slap' this summer and stay hydrated in the heat!