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SolRx Sunscreen Blog

Is Exercising Outdoors Better for Your Health?

outdoor exercise better for healthIt’s the start of Summer here at SolRx. And while it may seem inviting to take our workouts outdoors, the intensity of the sun can be an adversarial element that makes indoor exercise more inviting.

Combined with energy-zapping heat, dense city smog, and an increased concern about carbon emissions, it can seem like a safe alternative to hop on the treadmill or jump in the pool. But at the end of the day, is indoor exercise actually better for one’s health?

In short, no. No it is not. There have been a number of studies that show exercising outdoors is actually better for your health. Combined with our passion in keeping you protected from the sun’s harmful rays, below we shed light on why outdoor exercise is better for your health.

Outdoor Exercise for Emotional & Mental Health

While it may seem obvious that outdoor exercise improves physical health, studies have shown that getting outside can also boost mental and emotional health. In fact, a study led by scientists at Stanford revealed quantifiable evidence that walking in nature could lead to a lower risk of depression.Outdoor Hike

The study discovered that people who went for a 90 minute walk in a natural outdoor setting (as opposed to those who walked in a high-traffic urban environment) showed significantly lower activity in a region of the brain associated with a key factor in depression.

According to Gregory Bratman of Stanford, more than half of the world’s population lives in urban settings, and that’s forecasted to rise to 70 percent within a few decades. Just as urbanization and disconnection from nature have grown dramatically, so have mental disorders such as depression. In turn, taking a hike may be the best prescription for depression.

Mood-Boosting Benefits of Sun Exposure

In addition to the physical and emotional benefits of exercising in nature, individuals can also experience a dramatic boost in mood by getting outside on sunny days. Sun exposure is one of the most potent ways in which we absorb vitamin D, which is vital for both physical and mental health. 

Studies have shown that exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet light triggers the production of serotonin, a hormone that lifts mood. Low serotonin is associated with depression – particularly seasonal affective disorder (a form of depression that’s often experienced during the winter months when there is less sunlight.) The same lull feelings from a lack of sunlight may occur in individuals who are constantly cooped-up indoors.

Enjoying the benefits of exercise and recreation means getting outside and active, but also feeling the mood-boosting effects that stem from exposure to sunlight. Just remember to use a broad-spectrum sport sunscreen to ensure you stay protected.

Exercising Outdoors to Combat Mesothelioma & Cancer

Mesothelioma is a devastating and incurable form of cancer. For patients diagnosed with mesothelioma it means facing mortality, in addition to adapting to changes in one’s physical abilities, relationships, and overall self-sustainability.

According to an article at, “all of this comes together to reduce a cancer patient’s quality of life and this can have a big impact on mental health. Cancer patients are at an increased risk for developing depression and anxiety and for experiencing stress, fear, and other negative emotions on a regular basis. It is important to be aware of this risk and to notice the signs of depression, either in yourself or a loved one, so you can get help and treatment.”

From medications to therapy, there are a number of tools to help fight the battle against cancer and seek relief from depression. However one of the most accessible and powerful strategies is to stay active outdoors and feel the effects of natural sunlight.

In any event, exercising outdoors is often better for your health than staying inside. Going back to nature, getting healthy exposure from the sun, and putting your body in motion can be the best form of therapy available. Just be conscious of the harmful risks at play when stepping out in the intense summer sun, and choose the right type of sunscreen to ensure you’re protected from both UVA and UVB rays.

Image by Sport Box

Fall Sports – Make Sure to Wear Sunscreen While Watching or Playing

Most people remember to use sunscreen in the summer – when you’re going to be spending hours in the hot sun watching baseball games or soccer, or biking, running, or participating in different physical activities, it’s easy. Once fall comes around, you may be less vigilant about keeping your sunblock container nearby. But just because the sunniest season of the year is over, it doesn’t mean you can stop wearing sunscreen to protect your skin.

Fall Sports - Make Sure to Wear Sunscreen

Photo Credit: Torsten Bolten

Weather Changes

It’s true that once the seasons turn, you’ll experience cloudier days and lower temperatures that won’t tempt you to be outside quite so often. But the truth is, the ultraviolet rays that can cause skin cancer are unaffected by year-round weather changes, and remain present and potent on cloudy days. In addition, there are conditions that takes place in the fall that may actually lead to an increase in your chances of getting a burn. For example, nice and snow are reflective and can bounce UV rays back at you.

Sporting Events

Fall sports such as football, baseball, soccer, tennis, field hockey, volleyball, and cross-country require you to be outdoors, sometimes for lengthy periods of time, whether you’re watching or playing. And there’s no guarantee that you’ll have shade to shield you from the damaging rays of the sun. You may have to dress warmly for some of these games, but the sun is no less dangerous. Other sports, such as skiing and snowboarding, can offer additional concern because the sun rays may be damaging at higher altitudes – and snow and ice are often a factor there.

The Importance of Sun Safety

The UV rays that may damage your skin cells are UVA and UVB rays. UVB rays are the ones that lead to sunburn; you may not feel any of the symptoms of UVA exposure until your skin starts to show wrinkles and dark spots. You need to protect from both types of UV rays with a water-resistant, broad spectrum sunblock because your lifetime exposure to the sun determines whether you’re at risk for skin cancer, so reduce your exposure as much as possible. Avoid sunburns, because that increases your risk immensely. Stay in the shade and cover up if that’s possible.

The bottom line is, you must protect yourself from the sun not just in the summer, but all year round. You’ll still see quite a bit of sun in the fall, and you may still be out and about for long periods if you’re playing or watching sports. Be smart and keep that sunblock, such as SolRx SPF 44 Dry Zinc Sunscreen, on hand, even if it looks dreary out there.

Back to School – Is Sunblock on Your Kid’s School Supply List?

Is Sunblock on Your Kid’s School Supply List?

Photo Credit: Leon Weber

Believe it or not, summer’s almost over. This means it’s time to buy fall clothes and shop for items on your school supply list – pencils, tissues, markers, glue. Is sunblock included? 

Well, it might not be. These days, many school lists are geared to the general student population, as kids often share their supplies with one another, and sunblock is usually a more personal choice. In addition, it’s not really a direct educational aid. But it’s still something you should send to school with your students, and make sure they have on hand.

The Importance of Sunblock

You certainly understand why you have sunblock on hand throughout June, July, and August. The sun is strong, and your kids are hopefully spending a lot of time outdoors. They need protection from those UVA and UVB rays, the ones that create sunburn and age skin prematurely, making them at risk for skin cancer later in life. It’s hot, so they may sweat, which means a water-resistant formula would be best to protect their more sensitive skin. Remember that any amount of tanning on your child’s skin can represent cellular skin damage, so protecting them from the sun is key.

School Days

It’s easy to forget that your kids will be outside and exposed to the weather on school days. After all, you don’t see them, and you have other things on your mind – work, taking care of other children, home projects, classes. But they will have recess, and they may eat lunch outside (depending on your climate and school’s situation), and the walk or bike to and from school may also take them along sunlit sidewalks and open areas with little shade. They may spend time outside during gym classes, waiting for the bus, and on field days as well. The SolRx SPF 35 Sunscreen comes in a 1.5oz bottle with a carabiner handle for easy access.

Unseen Dangers

Putting sunblock on can be a hassle, especially when it comes to squirming children. But it’s important, if your kids will be outside, to make sure they are always wearing sunscreen, and try to encourage them to reapply during the day (we know this is hard!). Even in winter, and on cloudy days, the sun can be dangerous. The sun’s rays can sometimes penetrate through clouds quite well, depending on their type, thickness, and deepness through the atmosphere, and the UV effect can be even stronger on the earth’s surface as a result. In the winter, UV rays reflect off snow and ice and bounce right back onto skin, so the sun can affect your children more than you realize all year round – no matter what the weather conditions.

We can’t control every moment of our children’s days once they enter school, but we can give them the tools to help themselves. That’s really what education is all about, right? Although your school supply list might not include sunblock, you should slip a container into your kids’ backpacks and make sure they’re truly ready for school this fall – in all the important ways.

Sunscreen for Lips: 5 Reasons Why You Need to Wear It!

Don’t skip the lips, Wear Lip Sunscreen!

Sunscreen for LipsA recent study found that more than 60 percent of sunscreen users don’t protect their lips with a lip sunscreen or lip balm with SPF, but there are many reasons you should wear sunscreen for lips! Here are just a few of the key benefits of sunscreen for lips:

1. Skin Cancer

The media loves to scare you with dire warnings about your health, but in this case, it’s for real. The lips area is ripe for skin cancer, including two of the most common ones – basal and squamous cell carcinoma. If you protect your lips with a lip sunscreen with SPF, you can protect from cancer.

2. Sunburn

The thinner, more delicate skin on your lips is very susceptible to damage caused by UV rays. You know how painful a bad sunburn can be, so do yourself a favor and avoid it!

3. Hydration

Wind, sun, and sea can cause unsightly effects on your lips, such as dryness and chapping. Using lip balm with sunscreen helps keep your lips hydrated and kissable.

4. Healing Benefits

Often, there are additional side-benefits to using sunscreen for lips. The formula includes sunscreen and can help repair redness, cracks, and other issues. It’ll seal in moisture and protect from dry and cold air, as well as sun damage.

5. Other Lip Stuff Won’t Do

Maybe you think a dab of lip-gloss will tie your outfit together wonderfully. It might look good, but it doesn’t add any protection from harmful UV rays. In fact, dermatologists believe the shine of lip-gloss actually focuses UV rays on your lips. So don’t do that anymore. Or at least layer a protective lip sunscreen beneath your favorite shade.

Sunscreen for lips often comes in the form of lip balms with SPF, which is great because it means we get moisturizing benefits along with the sun protection. In fact, we get all kinds of benefits, other than the most important – protection from skin cancer – so break out that lip sunscreen. And use it.

SolRx WaterBlock®: The Preferred Sport Sunscreen of Triathletes

Triathlete Sport Sunscreen

Photo Courtesy of

Why Do Triathletes Love SolRx Sport Sunscreen?

SolRx is proud to say that it’s a brand preferred by sports and surf enthusiasts around the world, especially amongst triathletes. Why do triathletes love our product so much? It’s a result of our broad-spectrum, water resistant formulation that doesn’t block pores – which assists in increasing endurance.

SolRx Resists Sweat and Water

One of the reasons SolRx is preferred by triathletes is that our WaterBlock sunscreens are so good at resisting water, including sweat. In fact, AMA Labs developed a tough test to gauge SolRx’s effectiveness despite 8 hours immersed in water – and this test later became an industry standard. The result: SolRx sunscreens work at a nearly full SPF rating over that period of time underwater. They won’t sweat off into your eyes, irritating them, or wash away. Thus, SolRx’s patented WaterBlock system is effective in keeping the sun from damaging skin despite water, ice, snow, and sweat.

SolRx Protects from Sunburn

UVA rays cause aging and cell damage, while UVB rays lead to burning and even blistering. But in addition to causing long-term damage to your skin, sunburn can be painful and distracting. Even a slight amount of sunburn means that your body has to compensate and use up energy to fight the damage. This, in turn, negatively impacts endurance.

In addition, enflamed skin can lead to faster dehydration. SolRx’s sunscreens, simply because they’re so good at what they’re designed to do: help triathletes feel their best and perform their best, whether they’re training for their first event or doing an Ironman.

SolRx Lets Your Skin Breathe

SolRx sunscreens are non-comedogenic, oil-free, and paraben-free. This means our sport sunscreens don’t feel sticky when they’re applied and protect the skin without clogging pores. More importantly, they don’t clog your pores. Clogged pores don’t allow your skin to “breathe” properly – skin is less effective at removing toxins, sweat and oil, and at absorbing moisture it needs. This leads to the very real possibility that you might overheat, especially when participating in high-energy physical activities. SolRx formulas help break down the excess oils on your skin without stripping your skin cells of the necessary moisture and nutrients they need to keep your body in peak condition.

The fact is, SolRx is preferred by triathletes and coaches because its protective yet breathable qualities lead to more endurance, better performance, and safer conditions for your body and mind. If you’re a competitive athlete or just a for-fun weekend warrior, give yourself an edge with SolRx sport sunscreen!

Is Sunscreen on Your Back to School Supplies List?

Back to School SunscreenFor many of us, August is bittersweet, marking the end of summer vacation but offering exciting possibilities of a new school year. As parents and students embarked on the annual ritual of back-to-school supply shopping some may have been surprised to see a certain item included on the list: sunscreen.

In recent history there has been much debate over some school districts, and even some states, banning sunscreen from their schools. Most states require that parents sign a consent form to allow children to bring sunscreen to school, but only just recently the state of Oregon lifted its all-out ban on sunscreen.

Now we’re starting to see a new trend. Yes, many school districts are asking children – particularly younger kids who play outside during the day – to come to class with their very own bottle of sun protectant. Some schools suggest that the student apply sunscreen prior to arriving at school in the morning.

No matter what your school’s policy may be, we encourage the daily use of sunscreen. This great habit will help prevent your child’s skin from unnecessary damage and skin cancer.

Here are a few helpful tips when choosing the right sunscreen for your little scholar:

Make sure it’s broad spectrum sunscreen

SPF just refers to UVB protection and doesn’t account for UVA protection. The UVB rays are what causes sunburn, and UVA rays cause a lot of the damage associated with skin cancer and aging.  Interestingly, your child may be exposed to UVA rays even while sitting in class, because UVA rays are able to penetrate windowpanes that haven’t been treated with a UVA blocking formula. For a full explanation of broad spectrum sunscreen, head here.

Find the best water resistant formula you can

SolRx’s patented WaterBlock® technology has been proven to stay on for up to 8 hours fully submerged in water. What this means is that when your child is sweating during recess the sun protection won’t wash away.  Make sure to do your research, because you don’t want to end up with a formula that will wipe off with a towel from sweat.

Choose convenient packaging

Between heavy books, and science projects, students don’t have much space in their backpacks for bulky sunscreen bottles. Consider stocking up on the smaller travel-sized versions. Some, like SolRx’s 1.5 oz options, come equipped with a carabineer and can be clipped onto a key ring for ultimate convenience.

Don’t forget that sunscreen is needed on cold cloudy days too.  Even though we’re bidding farewell to summer vacation we’re not saying goodbye to daily application of sunscreen!

Here’s to a happy and healthy 2015 / 2016 school year!

Yes, You Really Need to Use Broad Spectrum Sunscreen

Use Broad Spectrum Sunscreen

We get it; sunscreen can seem complicated. The product labels are filled with abbreviations and numbers making it overwhelming to choose the best formula.

SolRx is here to help break it down for you: use a broad spectrum sunscreen. Doctors recommend this type of sunscreen for daily use because, when applied appropriately, it actually protects the skin from a broad spectrum of the sun’s rays.

Yes, There’s More to Skin Protection than Sunburn Prevention.

Okay, so things get a little science-geeky when explaining sunrays. (We love science geeks because we are science geeks, but everyone needs to use sunscreen, not just those of us who are really into science and chemistry.)

First, there are the light rays that we see: sunlight. But, there are also several different types of rays that we can’t see: ultraviolet radiation. We can’t see them because they have shorter wave lengths than visible light. There are three types of ultraviolet radiation: UVC, UVB, UVA, and broad spectrum sunscreens help protect against each of them.

UVC rays are absorbed by the Earth’s ozone before reaching our skin, so we don’t need to concern ourselves with these guys when talking about sunscreen.

A is for Aging; B is for Burning.

Here’s the thing, UVA rays are always able to reach the Earth’s surface. They can penetrate clouds and glass, so we need to protect ourselves every day – even on cloudy, rainy days and days spent indoors. The Environmental Protection Agency believes that 90 percent of skin changes associated with aging (such as wrinkles) are actually a result of UVA exposure!

UVB rays are the ones that cause the reddening and burning. They vary in intensity depending on the time of day and the season and they are able to bounce off reflective surfaces like ice and snow.

To sum it up, even if you aren’t getting burned, if you are in the sun unprotected you are being exposed to those damaging UVA rays, so be sure to lather up with a protective broad spectrum sunscreen for UVA/UVB Protection.