Ingredients To Watch For In Sunscreens

A Story by Suzette Shushok | Updated 04/24/2020 12:00pm


We’ve been told for years that we need to wear sunscreen daily, but what do we know about the ingredients in the stuff we’re slathering on our skin all summer?

 

You might not know this, but you might be ingesting sunscreen from inhaling sprays and applying sunscreen to your lips. Sunscreen is also absorbed by the skin.

 

     These chemicals can show up in your blood, urine, and even breast milk! That’s why the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is investigating the safety of sunscreen and insisting that consumers have clear information about the chemicals contained within sunscreen products.

 

     The FDA has stated that there isn’t enough information to determine if a wide range of chemicals contained in sunscreens are safe. In particular, concerns have been raised about these chemicals, so check your sunscreen to see if any of them are on the ingredients list:

 

1. Oxybenzone is associated with affecting hormone levels and altered birth weights. It has relatively high rates of skin allergies. It's one of the ingredients found to be contaminating coral reefs.

2. Octinoxate has moderate rates of skin allergies and impacted hormone levels. This ingredient also affects sea life.

3. Octocrylene has been associated with relatively high rates of skin allergies.

4. Homosalate is known to disrupt hormone levels.

 

     Mineral sunscreens, however, rate much better! The FDA has stated that natural minerals like zinc oxide and titanium dioxide are safe and less likely to penetrate the skin, while still providing sun protection.

 

     For much more detailed info and a downloadable sunscreen guide plus an app for your phone, visit: www.ewg.org/sunscreen/

 

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