We Are Sunshine

Sunscreen Claim Contradicts Derm Mantra

Tuesday, June 8th, 2010

2010-06-08 Quote of the Week SPF 100 copyA new television ad for Aveeno’s new SPF 100+ sunscreen products ends with the statement, “Sun protection works stronger, so you can play longer” — contradicting one of dermatology’s statements that SPFs should not be used to allow people to stay outdoors longer.

That, of course, is what sunscreen’s intended usage is: sunburn prevention.

“What you have here is a company that is only allowed to claim that its product prevents sunburn — period — which contradicts what dermatology tells people the product is for: To block any and all UV exposure,” Smart Tan Vice President Joseph Levy said. “It’s a great example of how sunscreen companies themselves cannot make claims about their products that Dermatology’s groups do on their behalf.”

Curiously, the new ad for Aveeno’s new SPF 100+ product also claims that the new product offers “Continuous protection.” Aveeno claims their new SPF 100+ products provide three times better sunburn protection as compared with ordinary SPF 30 products, based on a single-application lab test.

Neutrogena was the first to offer an SPF 100+ product in 2009. But now as the market braces for new U.S. FDA rules limiting sunscreen SPF claims, there are many SPF 100+ products on the market. Ten years ago FDA seemed poised to limit SPF numerology to 30+, but those plans were nixed by well-orchestrated lobbying efforts from those in the cosmetics industry.

Smart Tan supports the usage of chemical sunscreen only on occasions when sunburn is possible. Dermatology continues to misbrand sunscreen, calling for daily usage of chemical sunscreen products even when sunburn isn’t a possibility — a practice known to expose skin unnecessarily to sunscreen chemicals and which contributes to vitamin D deficiency.