KINeSYS, makers of superior sunscreen, wanted to set the record straight about sun protection. So they teamed up with dermatologists and scientists to compose a collection of the nation’s most popular sunscreen myths. Think you know all the facts? Compare your knowledge with their list of facts:
Myth: Any sunscreen with an SPF rating blocks all harmful UV radiation.
Truth: SPF is a measure that refers only to the duration of protection against UVB rays. In the U.S. there is currently no accepted rating system for protection against UVA radiation, so a product can only claim to be “broad spectrum” and only if it has recognized UVA protectants.
Myth: All sunscreens block some UVA.
Truth: Many sunscreens provide some UVA protection, but to be a broad-spectrum sunscreen, that protection must be across the UVA range. Ingredients found in broad-spectrum sunscreens include zinc oxide, and titanium dioxide.
Myth: There is a significant difference between SPF levels above SPF 30, so a SPF 60 is twice as effective as a SPF 30.
Truth: There is only a 1.6% or less difference between SPF 30, 45 and 60 in terms of effectiveness in filtering UVB rays.
Myth: A high SPF sunscreen will protect me all day long with one application.
Truth: Research has shown that high-SPF products can actually lead to behavior that will result in a higher incidence of sunburn. Users mistakenly think a high-SPF product will protect them all day with one application, when, in fact, all sunscreens must be reapplied regularly regardless of SPF.
Myth: Some sunscreens are waterproof or sweat-proof.
Truth: The FDA has deemed the terms waterproof and sweat-proof as misleading. The allowable description is water-resistant to better reflect the reality that no topical product can be waterproof.
Myth: Some sunscreens are actually sunblocks.
Truth: This is another term the FDA no longer allows as it creates the erroneous implication that a sunscreen can actually block UV radiation. In fact, no sunscreens are complete UV blocks. All sun protection products allow some level of UVA and UVB radiation to penetrate the skin regardless of the claimed SPF level of protection.
Myth: Some sunscreens are all-natural or organic.
Truth: There are actually several all-natural sunscreens: clay, hippopotamus sweat, coral amino acids and mud. The term organic is often misused, and since it is unregulated when it comes to topical drugs and cosmetics, there is no uniformity among products making this claim. There is no organic certification for sunscreens. If a sunscreen were truly organic in a food sense, it would require an aggressive preservative system or refrigeration.
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