Over the past three decades, individuals have become increasingly mindful of skincare and the need to shield themselves from the damaging effects of prolonged sun exposure. Sunscreen products, including sprays, have emerged as popular choices for safeguarding the skin. However, it is important to remember that these products can also impact the water quality in your swimming pool. Incorporating pool-friendly sunscreen practices into your swimming routine is essential for maintaining both skin health and pool water balance.

Understanding Sunscreen’s Role in Skin Health

Sunscreen is a vital component of maintaining healthy skin. Applying sunscreen before entering the pool and after leaving it should be a regular practice. When selecting a sunscreen product, it is crucial to consider factors such as SPF levels, water resistance, and the choice between creams and sprays.

It is worth noting that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) states that SPF levels alone do not determine the effectiveness of a sunscreen. For instance, a sunscreen with SPF 100 and another with SPF 50 provide similar levels of protection. SPF 100 sunscreens block up to 99% of UVB rays, while SPF 50 sunscreens can block up to 98%. Opting for a higher SPF does not mean you can stay in the sun for longer periods. Instead, sunscreens containing zinc oxide, benzophenones, titanium dioxide, or salicylates are recommended.

Choosing water-resistant sunscreens is advisable, as they retain their effectiveness even after being exposed to water for either forty or eighty minutes, depending on the specific product. However, it is important to understand that water-resistant does not mean waterproof, so reapplication is necessary after swimming.

To ensure effective sunscreen application, follow these recommendations:

• Apply sunscreen at least 30 minutes before entering the pool.
• Sunscreen should be applied regardless of whether you are wearing makeup or not.
• Use approximately two tablespoons of sunscreen to cover the entire body. Studies have shown that people tend to use less than the recommended amount. Don’t forget to apply sunscreen to the ears, the back of the legs, and bald spots.
• Use a lip balm with UV protection to safeguard your lips.
• Reapply sunscreen every two hours or more frequently if you swim and go underwater.
• Check the expiration date before purchasing or replacing sunscreen, as its efficacy diminishes over time.
Remember that UV rays can penetrate even on overcast days, so using sunscreen is crucial even when you are not by the pool.

The Impact of Sunscreen on Pool Water Chemistry

Water chemistry plays a crucial role in providing a pleasant and safe swimming experience, and Platinum Pools understands its significance.

While sunscreen is essential for protecting swimmers from harmful UV rays, it can negatively affect the water chemistry of your pool. Sunscreen residues in the water can lead to chemical imbalances, causing cloudiness and contributing to skin and eye irritations among swimmers.

Solutions for Addressing Sunscreen-related Issues

If your pool’s water appears cloudy due to sunscreen residues, you can take the following steps to mitigate the problem:

• Shock the water with a chlorinating product, ensuring that the filter is clean and running efficiently.
• Consider substituting sunscreen with sun-protective clothing, such as long-sleeve swim shirts, especially if you spend a significant amount of time in the pool.
• Opt for sunscreens containing zinc oxide, as they have fewer additives that can impact pool water quality.
• Encourage swimmers to shower before entering the pool to remove dirt and reduce the amount of sunscreen residue.
• Implement enzyme treatments to break down oils and ingredients present in sunscreen lotions. Regular use of enzyme treatments can help maintain water quality by converting the components of sunscreen chemicals into substances that can be removed through filtration.
• Ensure proper filtration by maintaining the appropriate flow rate and running the filter for the recommended duration. Periodic pressure-based backwashing can also optimize filter performance. Regular filter maintenance, at least every other week during swim season, is essential for optimal functioning.
• Clean your pool and filters regularly to eliminate dirt and grime, preserving the water quality at its best.

If you encounter difficulties in removing oils and product buildup in your pool water, Skim Daddy is here to help. Our team of experts can assist you with all aspects of pool care. Contact us today or visit our website for more information on how we can support you in maintaining a pristine pool environment