Battling the Day-Star
Last week, the FDA issued several new rules for sunscreen labels. These rules, which go into effect in 2012, hope to clear up confusion about SPF and better protect consumers from the sun’s damaging rays. The new rules will also prevent sunscreen manufacturers from using misleading terms such as “sunblock” and “waterproof” on their products.
This is all great. But the new rules won’t go into effect until next year. Plus, some believe that there could be serious adverse health effects from the ingredients in sunscreens. According to Consumer Reports,
Almost every tested sunscreen contains some ingredients associated with adverse health effects in animal studies. Oxybenzone and other endocrine disruptors may interfere with hormones in the body, and nanoscale zinc and titanium oxides are linked to problems such as potential reproductive and developmental effects.
Retinyl palmitate (look for it among inactive ingredients), a type of topical vitamin A, is an antioxidant that animal studies have linked to an increased risk of skin cancers. In skin, it converts readily to retinoids, associated with a risk of birth defects in people using acne medications containing them. As a precaution, pregnant women may want to avoid sunscreens with retinyl palmitate. 
More research is needed, but as of now, the proven benefits of sunscreen outweigh any potential risks.
This is all so confusing. You should heed the advice of the NYT — “The best advice to prevent UV damage is to stay out of the midday sun altogether and to cover up with clothing, a hat and umbrella during the rest of the day even if it is cloudy. Clouds do not block damaging rays.”
Coincidentally, I recently received a black Scala Collezione sunhat with sun protection of UPF 50. Kismet! If you have to go out in the daylight, this hat will serve you well.
I tried to incorporate some white into my outfit to match the hat. I’m in the middle of altering this E.C. Star black lace dress. I changed the neck line to get rid of a string tie, and I would eventually like to switch the outer white edging from white to black, but I’m not sure if this is even possible.
The half moons on the nails matched the rick-rack trim on the hat perfectly. Yay!