Benzene Has Been Detected in a Long List of Popular Sunscreens

Benzene Has Been Detected in a Long List of Popular Sunscreens featured image

A latest check by on-line pharmacy Valisure discovered that a big selection of sunscreens and after-sun care merchandise contained traces of benzene, a probably harmful carcinogen that, in keeping with The American Cancer Society, is understood to trigger most cancers.

In the check performed by Valisure, 294 batches of sun-care merchandise from 69 totally different corporations had been examined, and the outcomes had been astonishing. Per a latest petition launched by the model, the check discovered that 27 p.c of the samples examined—the merchandise included gels, sprays, after-sun lotions and lotions—contained traces of benzene, whereas others had about 3 times the FDA-approved restrict. To see the listing of sunscreens that comprise benzene, click on right here.

While benzene has been confirmed to trigger well being points, beauty chemist Kelly Dobos says it’s value wanting deeper into the complete ingredient listing earlier than making a shopping for determination. “Benzene is not an ingredient purposefully added to sunscreen,” she says. “These results [from Valisure] are likely due to the presence of trace contaminants. Organic sunscreen molecules contain a structure called a benzene ring, and that part of the molecule is what helps the sunscreen absorb UV rays. It’s possible tiny amounts of trace benzene are present, but it is certainly not intentionally added. This study also showed some after-sun aloe gels, which do not contain any sunscreen actives had trace benzene levels, so it’s unclear that the sunscreen actives are the only source. Benzene rings are also found in many fragrances and preservatives such as sodium benzoate, so I think it’s worth looking deeper into the full ingredient compositions before panicking.”

On Instagram yesterday, beauty formulator Stephen Alain Ko shared related ideas to Dobos, saying “Before we all panic and lose our minds over benzene in sunscreen…You’re exposed to it when you shower, eat, go outside, stand near where someone has smoked, and drink water. Should we be reducing our exposure? Yes. Do I think you should stop using your sunscreen? If it’s part of the contaminated batch, why not. Will you ever reduce your exposure to zero? No.”

Ko additionally gives a few steps to take in case your day by day sunscreen was included on the FDA’s listing of sunscreens that embody the chemical: “Check if the sunscreen you use is listed in table two and three—the exact sunscreen, not just the brand. If the sunscreen you use is on the list, make sure the UPC, lot number, and expiration date match for that specific sunscreen. If it does match all three, I would stop using it, but hold on to it in case it gets recalled. Keep in mind that there’s potential variation in lots of batches.”

Although each Ko and Dobos stress that benzene is pure and may be discovered in many locations by means of day-to-day life, Prospect, KY dermatologist Tami Buss Cassis, MD says, “Of course I am always concerned when extra chemicals and carcinogens are found. I hope that the individual companies will take this news seriously and provide excellent sunscreens threat are ultimately safe for us to use.”

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