Interview with MDSolarSciences: Sunscreen Facts and Myths

Interview with MDSolarSciences: Sunscreen Facts and Myths

Wearing sunscreen is just the first step in a good sun protection regimen, but are you aware that you have a choice when it comes to choosing a sunscreen that fits your lifestyle and expectations? It can be overwhelming shopping for sunscreen in drugstores or online. That’s why UV Skinz has partnered with a few sunscreen companies that we believe uphold ethical standards and dependability when it comes to safe sun protection. One of those companies is MDSolarSciences. MDSolarSciences was founded by a prominent Dermatologic Oncologist, Dr. Robert J. Freidman. It was during Freidman’s dermatology practice that he noticed he was spending a lot of time curing what was mostly a preventable disease, skin cancer. The majority of patients were women coming in for routine exams and then finding out that things were more serious. He then realized he could make a difference. Freidman and 12 of his colleagues formed a scientific advisory council to formulate and innovate high-quality sunscreen for all skin types. Sunscreen by itself is good, but the real protection comes from being knowledgeable about what type of sunscreen you use, the UPF 50+ clothing you wear and continuing to educate yourself on sun-safe practices. Freidman’s goal is that people wear sunscreen, to raise awareness about the disease and eradicate skin cancer.

We don’t want to scare you—we want you to be outdoors, but we want you to protect yourself.

I had a chance to speak with the Vice President of Sales, Allison Cotaling, and she gave me so much amazing information that I would like to share with you. Allison passionately shared that MDSolarSciences always strives to make products with the highest effectiveness made with the least controversial and safest ingredients, while still maintaining a pleasurable texture that people would want to apply daily. (All of the information you will read has been compiled from my interview with Allison.)

So, why don’t people wear sunscreen daily?

  • Lack of education; there are still some misconceptions about when and why people should wear sunscreen. In reality, everyone (no matter your skin tone or color) should be wearing sunscreen on a daily basis.
  • They didn’t like the texture; our exposure to sunscreen in our childhoods may have scarred us. The thick strong smelling lotions and creams were not pleasant to apply, but times have changed and thanks to companies like MDSolarSciences we can enjoy wearing sunscreen.
  • Controversial ingredients they didn’t like; label reading is just as important with sunscreen as it is with food. Our skin is our largest organ and we should be protective and picky over it. Even so, there are certain ingredients you should look for. These will be shared below!

Not all sunscreens are created equal. There has been a lot of talk about what sunscreen ingredients are more effective and safest for our bodies and the environment. We will go through and learn more about mineral and chemical sunscreens and then compare the two.

It’s better to wear a sunscreen, than no sunscreen.


Facts about Mineral Sunscreens: 

  1. These sunscreens can only have two active ingredients, zinc oxide and titanium dioxide; in any combination.
  2. Mineral sunscreens reflect and deflect UV rays. They do not enter your bloodstream, rather they sit on top of skin and are a physical barrier on your skin like a shield of armor.
  3. There is absolutely no waiting when applying a mineral sunscreen because they are effective immediately upon application.
  4. These types of sunscreens are great for people with sensitive skin, compromised immune systems, women who are pregnant, or during post cosmetic procedures.
  5. Zinc oxide is also a known wound healer that helps with redness and inflammation of the skin.
  6. All MDS mineral-based products include 17% zinc oxide. It is the only ingredient that can cover the entire spectrum of UVA and UVB rays on its own–no other ingredient can do this job.

Facts about Chemical Sunscreen ingredients:

  1. Most ingredients approved in United States are chemical ingredients.
  2. Chemical sunscreens are like a sponge or an absorber. They need to be applied 30 minutes prior to sun exposure because these types of sunscreens need time to stabilize and absorb into the skin for them to be effective in providing protection for UV rays.
  3. If they are unstable when your skin is exposed to sunlight it causes the chemicals to break down and they will not protect you from the harmful UV rays.

Are chemical sunscreens bad?

This statement is not completely accurate. If you are using one you do want to be aware of ingredients, just like if you were to look at a food label. MDSolarSciences brings products to the market that are safe for people and the environment. MDS suggests that you should be a label reader and make an informed decision based on your lifestyle.

Keep in mind that there is no one chemical that can cover the whole UVA and UVB spectrum, which is why chemical sunscreens have multiple ingredients.


What’s the difference between UVA and UVB rays?

These rays are commonly known as the “burning ray” (UVB) and “aging rays” (UVA). What some people may not know is that 95% of the rays that affect the skin are UVA and only 5% are UVB.

The intensity of UVA rays doesn’t matter across the seasons; it’s the same level of UVA if you’re on a sunny beach or spending the day outside on a cloudy day. They penetrate clouds and glass, reflect off of sand, snow and other surfaces. Higher altitudes also receive more UVA damage.

UVB rays are tied to the seasons as they are more prevalent in June than in February. The UVB rays are monitored via the UV index. UVB damage is almost immediate, those rays are the reason you get a sunburn.

Both contribute to the formation of skin cancer. UVA damage is cumulative over time and goes deep into the dermis of your skin so that over time you will notice the effects of skin damage (fine lines and wrinkles) and skin cancer. The ozone is different today that it was years ago, it is much thinner now which also factors into the rise in skin cancer among 15-29 year olds.

Does SPF matter?

SPF stands for Sun Protection Factor which only relates to the level of UVB in a sunscreen product. It’s important to choose a sunscreen that is labeled Broad Spectrum to be protected from UVA and UVB rays. As a dermatologist developed brand, MDSolarSciences, suggests that we use a sunscreen with an SPF of 30, 40 or 50. Choosing a sunscreen with an SPF 30 provides 97% protection while jumping up to an SPF 50 provides 98% protection.

What should people know?

When sunscreens advertise with phrases like “all day protection” or “water proof”, it gives false security. Nothing is completely water proof or sweat proof. These type of products can last 40-80 minutes, but only if people are following the product guidelines. The shot glass full is misleading as well—we all have different bodies; different shapes and sizes. Apply enough sunscreen to cover all exposed parts of your body for full protection. The way we apply sprays, mineral-sunscreens and lotions also varies so read the product instructions carefully.

UV Skinz and MDSolarSciences want people to protect themselves. Wearing sun protection 365 days of the year is very important. We encourage you to become more conscious about the ingredients, pick a sunscreen that works for you and use it every day.

Your skin is like an elephant, it never forgets.