Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Keep Calm and Slather On!

Folks, I have some good news and some bad news. The bad news is that next year, that SPF 100 sunscreen that some of you love so dearly will no longer be on shelves. I'll wait while you moan and groan. Finished? Okay. Now for the good news: it wasn't doing you any good anyway. Really.

The FDA has issued a statement that beginning in 2012, new guidelines regarding sunscreen will take effect. Believe it or not, these are all actually reasonable, and designed to keep your skin healthy while saving you money. Here's the breakdown:

Certain buzzwords can no longer be used:
SUN BLOCK--It's false advertising; no skin product can totally block out the sun.
WATER PROOF--Again, not true. The more accurate term, "water-resistant," will be used instead.
SWEAT PROOF--Another misrepresentation. The product might be difficult to sweat off, but it eventually will.

Other buzzwords have to be qualified or earned:
WATER-RESISTANT--Any product claiming this must specify if the wearer must reapply after 40 minutes (lighter formulas) or 80 minutes (heavier products).
BROAD-SPECTRUM--Products with this claim must protect from both UVA and UVB rays.

Labels will change:
NO RATINGS OVER 50--No, the FDA isn't trying to give you skin cancer. SPFs over 50 do not provide any additional protection. Seriously. They do, however, come with hefty price tags and give wearers the false sense that they don't need to reapply.

A few other changes:
  • Any product that is not broad-spectrum and SPF 15 or higher will have to carry a warning label that states the product will not protect against skin cancer or early aging.
  • No product can claim to work for more than two hours.
  • Only products that are applied to skin by rubbing or spraying can be called "sunscreen". No wipes, makeup, body washes, or the like can use that term, regardless of SPF presence.
So, there you go. Enjoy the sun, but remember: the only safe tan is a fake tan, so slather on that sunscreen!

1 comment:

Add your own ramblings, musings, or existential ponderings here--just keep it clean and keep it kind.

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