Sunscreen: Friend or Foe?

May 27, 2010


You would think sunscreen is our friend since its supposed to, you know, PROTECT us from that big, fiery ball in the sky.  However, some sunscreens, just like other cosmetic products, can have harmful chemicals that seep into our skin wreaking havoc on our bodies.  Yuck!  You may be thinking “Eh, I only use it 3 months out of the year.  How bad can it be?” 

Do you really want to know? 

“Recently available data from an FDA study indicate that a form of vitamin A, retinyl palmitate, when applied to the skin in the presence of sunlight, may speed the development of skin tumors and lesions (NTP 2009). This evidence is troubling because the sunscreen industry adds vitamin A to 41 percent of all sunscreens.” 

Still need convincing? 

“The most common, oxybenzone, can trigger allergic reactions, is a potential hormone disruptor and penetrates the skin in relatively large amounts. Some experts caution that it should not be used on children.”  

Run (!) to your abandoned beach/pool bag, dust off the old, expired bottle of sunscreen and compare the ingredients with this information.  Most importantly, avoid these two ingredients: vitamin A (retinyl palmitate) and oxybenzone (aka the “notorious hormone disruptor”). 

We’ve just ordered SPF 30 from Loving Naturals. It claims its water-resistant, safe for babies (great, but what about everyone else?!), 100% natural (which can mean various things allowing companies to get away with a lot of crap products, but I digress…), non-greasy (highly doubt it), and vegan.

We’ll see.  And we’ll keep you posted. 

For now, put on some shades, a wide-brimmed sun hat, and avoid the hottest part of the day until you find a safe sunscreen!


One Response to “Sunscreen: Friend or Foe?”

  1. UPDATE: We tried out our new sunscreen (Loving Naturals) and its actually non-greasy!

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