While the main initiative of sunscreen is to prevent sunburn, nowadays it’s used to block harmful radiation waves that cause skin cancer, one of the most common forms of cancer in the United States.1 A recent study from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) shows that chemicals from sunscreen enter the bloodstream immediately, only one day after use.
The Sunscreen StudyThe study on sunscreen was published in JAMA shows blood samples from 24 people, 12 women and 12 men, who applied the maximum recommended level of sunscreen to 75 percent of their bodies for an entire week. Researchers looked for the chemicals from sunscreen in the blood samples and found high levels of avobenzone, oxybenzone, ecamsule, and octocrylene. The study found that the application of 4 commercially available sunscreens resulted in plasma concentrations exceeding the FDA-established threshold for potentially waiving some nonclinical toxicology studies for sunscreens.2 Cosmetic dermatologists say that a little education goes a long way. While these results are certainly shocking, they’re not harmful enough to suggest that people should stop using sunscreen to protect themselves against the harmful UV rays from the sun. At the Dermatology & Cutaneous Surgery Institute, we suggest choosing a sunscreen made of zinc oxide, an ingredient that has proven its effectiveness. Zinc works as a deflector, bouncing harmful UV rays off our skin, while chemical sunscreens absorb the sun’s rays. Additional Resources: Skin Rejuvenation Chemical Peels Sources
- Skin Cancer Foundation – Skin Cancer Facts & Statistics
- JAMA Network – Effect of Sunscreen Application Under Maximal Use Conditions on Plasma Concentration of Sunscreen Active Ingredients, A Randomized Clinical Trial