Sunscreen Chemicals Soak All the Way Into Your Bloodstream

WIRED | 5/6/2019 | Megan Molteni
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By now, you’ve probably been taught to gird your sun-starved skin for battle with cancer-causing cosmic rays every time you go outside. Choose a spray, choose a lotion, but by heavens, choose something! Legions of doctors, parents, and YouTube beauty influencers are unanimous on this point. But with sunscreen application evolving from a week or two at the beach every year to a constant daily slather, US health regulators want to know more about how all those photoprotective chemicals interact with people’s skin.

If they sink into tissues and get absorbed into the bloodstream, that could be a problem. Then, like other over-the-counter drugs the Food and Drug Administration oversees, sunscreens should be studied to make sure they don’t mess up people’s hormones, affect their reproductive systems, or cause cancer. Such safety testing has never been done on the active ingredients in sunscreen, because those chemicals were approved decades ago, before anyone suspected they could be absorbed into the body. Now we know it’s more than just a suspicion.

Today - Researchers - FDA - Results - Trial

Today, researchers at the FDA revealed the results of a small clinical trial designed to test how four of the most common sun-filtering molecules on the market behave after they’ve been sprayed on and rubbed in. The results, published in the journal JAMA, show that contrary to what sunscreen manufacturers have been saying, UV-blocking chemicals do seep into circulation. Now, don’t panic and toss your tubes. There’s no evidence yet that they’re doing anything harmful inside the body. But the revelation will have serious impacts on sunscreen manufacturers going forward, and may change what options you’ll find on drugstore shelves before the year is out.

“Everyone had always thought that because these are intended to work on the surface of the skin that they wouldn’t be absorbed, but they are,” says Theresa Michele, director...
(Excerpt) Read more at: WIRED
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