Who knew sunscreens were not regulated by the FDA?
According to the Environmental Working Group (EWG), many are ineffective at best and often dangerous. Thank you to EWG for doing a full-scale investigation, so we don’t have to guess any more.
From Environmental Working Group’s Cosmetic Safety Database:
Does your sunscreen work? An investigation of nearly 1,000 brand-name sunscreen products finds that 4 out of 5 contain chemicals that may pose health hazards or don’t adequately protect skin from the sun’s damaging rays.
Some of the worst offenders are leading brands like Coppertone, Banana Boat, and Neutrogena.
More than a million cases of skin cancer are diagnosed in the U.S. every year, but FDA still hasn’t finalized sunscreen standards first announced 30 years ago. Meanwhile, companies are free to claim but not provide broad spectrum protection. Until FDA requires that all sunscreens be safe and effective, Environmental Working Group’s comprehensive sunscreen guide—including a list of 171 products that offer very good sun protection—fills in the gaps.
Some sunscreens absorb into the blood and raise safety concerns. Our review of the technical literature shows that some sunscreen ingredients absorb into the blood, and some are linked to toxic effects. Some release skin-damaging free radicals in sunlight, some could disrupt hormone systems, several are strongly linked to allergic reactions, and others may build up in the body or the environment. FDA has not established rigorous safety standards for sunscreen ingredients that fully examines these effects.
Find out which sunscreens EWG recommends here.