Study: Sunscreen enters bloodstream after just one day of use

Posted at 1:40 PM, May 06, 2019

CNN – Sunscreen is supposed to protect you from dangerous overexposure to the sun’s damaging rays, but some types might be doing more harm than good.

A new study by The Journal of the American Medical Association found several common sunscreen ingredients can enter the bloodstream at dangerous levels after just one day of use. The levels were high enough to trigger a government safety investigation, according to a pilot study conducted by the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, an arm of the US Food and Drug Administration.

A dozen chemical sunscreens were studied by the FDA. The study found four of the chemicals remain in the body at least 24 hours after sunscreen use stopped.

The four chemicals studied, avobenzone, oxybenzone, ecamsule and octocrylene, are part of a dozen that the FDA recently said needed to be researched by manufacturers before they could be considered GRASE or “generally regarded as safe and effective.”

However, that doesn’t mean you should stop using sunscreen. The American Academy of Dermatology says you should follow these tips when applying sunscreen:

  1. Choose a sunscreen that has an SPF of 30 or higher, is water resistant, and provides broad-spectrum coverage.
  2. Apply sunscreen generously before going outdoors.
  3. Apply enough sunscreen to cover all exposed skin.
  4. Apply sunscreen to all bare skin.
  5. To remain protected when outdoors, reapply sunscreen every two hours, or immediately after swimming or sweating.