Hi, guys. Happy Caturday! It’s Memorial Day weekend, a.k.a. the unofficial summer kickoff. A lot of folks are hitting the pool or beach or other sunny points beyond armed with sunscreen, which is why I wanted to call attention to a related story evolving here in the U.S.
I’ll link some videos and articles below, but in a very abbreviated nutshell, a third-party lab recently tested a bunch of sunscreens and sun after-care products and found that 78 of the products they tested were contaminated with benzene, “a known carcinogen linked to a variety of harmful effects.
My hope is to not freak you out, just to highlight a developing story.
Along with a summary of their findings, the lab released two lists, one of the products that were contaminated with benzene, and another list of products that weren’t. They also included specific lot numbers of the batches they tested.
I was shocked to see some big brands among those on the contaminated list (Neutrogena, Banana Boat, Elta MD). I was even more shocked to see that the La Roche Posay Anthelios 60 Sunscreen Lotion Spray I bought last month was on the naughty list.
So, the first thing I did was check the lot number on the bottom of my bottle, and the lot numbers didn’t match, so I breathed a short sigh of relief…but still. I’m tossing it to play it safe while this story develops.
Refreshingly, one of the other sunscreens I’ve been testing/wearing lately, Sun Bum Original Lotion SPF 70, was on the list of sunscreens that weren’t found to contain benzene, but some of the others — CeraVe Tinted Mineral Sunscreen, Bliss Block Star, La Roche Posay Anthelios 60 Melt-In Sunscreen Milk and Sun Bum SPF 70 Spray — weren’t among those that were tested at all, so…
It’s a lot to take in, I know. A dermatologist on YouTube who I really like, Dr. Dray, does a thorough overview of the situation and the info we have so far, and I found it extremely thoughtful and helpful, if you’re interested in researching it further.
Cassandra Bankson, a medical esthetician whose channel I also like, offered another good breakdown…
One thing is, there are a lot of sunscreens out there, as you know, and the lab only tested 294 of them, which doesn’t come remotely close to the whole kit and caboodle. Until the FDA gets involved or makes a statement, or issues any recalls, my plan is to continue to wear sunscreen and sun protective clothing, but I’ll stick to sunscreens I can find on the nice list for now, just to be as cautious as one can be in this sh*tshow, I guess.
Here’s some more information…
- The Valisure study/recall request and list of sunscreens that do contain benzene is here
- The Valisure list of sunscreens that do not contain benzene is here
- From Shape: A New Report Found the Carcinogen Benzene In 78 Popular Sunscreens
- From Dermatology Times: Detectable Levels of Benzene Noted in Some Sunscreen Batches, Valisure Highlights Controversy of Benzene Contamination in Sunscreen Products and Physician Weighs in on Sunscreen Contamination Controversy
In less serious news…what are you up to this weekend? What’s the weather like there? We’re still figuring out what we’re going to do, but I’m thinking first barbecue of the season. 😁
Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,