Are you ready for the great outdoors?

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Summer is in full swing, and while many of us are doing everything we can to spend time outdoors, there’s a good chance you’ve forgotten something crucial: sunscreen! I get just as excited as anyone to enjoy warmer weather, but this year I’m making a point to focus on skin care and always wear sunscreen. Here’s why:

-The ozone layer is depleting, meaning we’re being exposed to more and more harmful UVA/UVB rays.

  • In the last 30 years, there have been more diagnosed cases of skin cancer than all other cancers combined! Skin cancer is on the rise, and sunscreen decreases your risk.
  • Prolonged sun exposure just isn’t necessary; most people will get enough vitamin D with normal outdoor activities of 5-30 minutes per day, twice a week.
  • Wearing sunscreen every day prevents brown spots, discolorations, and slows down aging skin.

I’ve also been glad to see that brands are taking this seriously, too. I recently stopped by Target and was overwhelmed with all the sunscreen options. The thick white lotion that always left a residue no matter how much you rubbed it in is no more, and in its place you can find lightweight creams, sprays, gels, and sticks. There’s something for everyone, and at a variety of price points. Personally, I’ve chosen to use a moisturizer containing SPF 30 and a great lightweight foundation with SPF 45.

Regardless of the sunscreen you choose, here are some extra tips to protect your skin from the sun year-round. Limit your time outside between 10am and 4pm when the sun is strongest and reapply every 2 hours. Some medications may make skin more sensitive so read your labels, and always choose one that is broad spectrum, water resistant, and at least SPF 30. See you outside!

If you think volunteering with Habitat is right for you, please call 717-545-7299 or email volunteer@harrisburghabitat.org Construction sites are open weekly Wednesday through Saturday from 8am to 4pm and are a great opportunity for a couple of friends or a bigger group. Habitat’s experienced construction team will teach you any skill you’ll need during your volunteer day, and also provide all the tools and necessary protective equipment. Hope to see you on site soon!