FDA Changes Sunscreen Labeling

Jun 16, 2011
For most of us, who want to protect ourselves from skin cancer and premature ageing, FDA finally changes the sunscreen labeling to help customers make a better decision about sunscreen use.

First of all FDA bans the terms that can be inaccurate, such as "sunblock", "waterproof" and "sweat proof". Now the sunscreen manufacturers can only use the words "water-resistant" and specify how long it works and when it should be reapplied, after 40 or 80 minutes in the water. If the sunscreen is not water-resistant, it should carry a warning not to use it in the water.

Also, only the sunscreens that protect against UVA and UVB rays and have an SPF no less than 15 can be considered effective at reducing the risk of skin cancer, sunburns and wrinkles. If the sunscreen does not meet these requirements, it should carry a warning.

According to a new report, the sunscreens with SPF 50 and higher will be banned, because there is no evidence that they offer greater protection against UV radiation.

The labels go into effect in 2012.