A: Use a broad-spectrum sunscreen with at least SPF 30, and make sure it actually says “sunscreen.” The FDA disallows the term “sunblock” because “it implies block, and nothing is blocked,” says Dr. Cynthia Bailey, CEO of Advanced Skin Care & Dermatology in Sebastopol, California. The best bet is a full spectrum mineral sunscreen, such as zinc oxide, which uses metals to reflect the sun’s rays off your body.
Bailey also recommends wearing sun-protective clothing. You can buy T-shirts with zinc oxide built into the fabric, such as Coolibar, which offers a variety of clothing that screens UVA and UVB rays.
Take sun damage seriously, adds Dr. Sarah Villafranco, founder of organic skin care line Osmia. In case of sunburn, a cool shower or bath will soothe the skin. “After bathing or showering, follow up with a body oil containing lavender essential oil to soothe discomfort and reduce inflammation,” Villafranco suggests. “For more chronic damage, use vitamin A–rich skin care products, such as those with a base of rosehip seed oil, carrot seed oil or jojoba oil,” all of which promote increased cell turnover. And of course, if you ever notice multicolored or uneven moles, see a dermatologist right away.
Also, to make up for a lack of direct sun-to-skin exposure, consider adding a vitamin D supplement to your daily regimen.