You live in Texas and you’re probably going to need sunscreen this summer. The sunshine in Houston averages about 204 days a year, and we are inclined to spend more hours outdoors in the summer than other months.
We’ve heard the statistics, and the risks, of melanoma for years, and by now you should be aware that physicians recommend you apply some type of protection against the harmful rays of the sun before going out. Dr. Rajani Katta is a Houston dermatologist and a clinical assistant professor at Baylor College of Medicine. “The best sunscreen is the one you are actually going to use,” she counsels, recommending an SPF of 30 or higher. “A lot of people may apply it very diligently in the morning, but they may not realize how quickly that protection wears off.” She suggests reapplying every two hours for maximum effectiveness. “My personal preference for most patients is lotion, because I think it’s easier to monitor where you are applying it. With sprays, I’ve found that sometimes some people will miss areas,” she says, pointing out that the legs, especially the backs, are places that can be missed. A new report by the Environmental Working Group cautions that 73% of sunscreens aren’t as effective as advertised.