The bright red spot, tender skin, days of peeling -- it's only part of the sun damage story.
Sunburns are the most immediately annoying evidence of too much time spent unprotected in the sun, but what we often don't see right away is the accelerated skin aging and risk of skin cancer that can go along with them.
"Unfortunately, skin cancer rates are still rising, and we do everything we can to try to minimize that, and using sunscreen is one component of that," said Dr. Darrell Rigel, clinical professor of dermatology at Mount Sinai Icahn School of Medicine in New York City.
The Environmental Working Group released its annual guide to sunscreen use Thursday, with lists of its recommended sunscreens, including options for kids, mineral and nonmineral varieties, and moisturizers and lip balms with SPF. The EWG does not make revenue from these lists, according to a spokesperson.
The guide comes in time for the warmer months, as many people begin to spend more time outside, but good sun protection is important even if it's cool or cloudy, and whether you are sitting by a window, out skiing, or at the beach, dermatologists said.
"Obviously, summertime we are more exposed to more sun, but any given day we should be conscious of the fact that ultraviolet radiation is an established, well-known carcinogen, aside from the fact that it can accelerate the aging of skin," said Dr. Adam Friedman, professor and chair of the department of dermatology at the George Washington School of Medicine and Health Sciences.