Sunscreen Guide Recommends Only Eight Percent On Market

05.24.10 |

The low percentage is due to new government information citing a form of vitamin A used in 41-percent of sunscreens that may speed the growth of skin tumors and lesions. The Food and Drug Administration is conducting tests on the vitamin A compound to see if it accelerates skin cancer. Also, researchers have found that sunscreens with SPF ratings higher than 50 lead to a false sense of security, which results in people staying in the sun longer and being exposed to UVA radiation. EWG officials examined 14-hundred sunscreens, lotions, sprays, creams, make-up and lip balms. The 39 products that earned EWG's top honors contained the minerals titanium or zinc.

 EWG Senior Vice President for Research Jan Houlihan called many sunscreens available on the market "modern-day snake oil" that may include potentially dangerous chemicals that penetrate the skin of the body. The Food and Drug Administration has failed to regulate sunscreens as it had promised to do in the past. Houlihan called the FDA a "poster child for government inaction." More than a million people are diagnosed with skin cancer every year. While the FDA says regulations could be imposed by October of 2011, regulated sunscreens would not make it to store shelves before the summer of 2012 at the earliest.