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Jul 30, 2019

Is Sunscreen the New Margarine?

Some studies say sunscreen isn't worth it. Are they true? (Photo: Alex Shutin/Unsplash)
Some studies say sunscreen isn't worth it. Are they true?

Earlier this year, Outside contributing editor Rowan Jacobsen wrote a feature that questioned whether our efforts to avoid skin cancer have caused us to develop an unhealthy relationship with the sun and sunscreen. Looking at controversial new research that challenges established guidelines for sun exposure, Jacobsen suggested that more direct sunlight on our unprotected skin might actually be good for our health. The story struck a nerve, becoming the most popular article in the history of Outside’s website and provoking some pretty loud criticisms. Outside podcast contributor Stephanie Joyce talks to Rowan about his reporting, his response to critics, and whether skipping the SPF 50 is really a good choice.

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Outside’s longstanding literary storytelling tradition comes to life in audio with features that will both entertain and inform listeners. We launched in March 2016 with our first series, Science of Survival, which was developed in partnership with PRX, distributors of the idolized This American Life and The Moth Radio Hour, among others. We have since expanded our show and now offer a range of story formats, including interviews with the biggest figures in sports, adventure, and politics, as well as reports from our correspondents in the field.