After many emails regarding my first post about the Marie Claire study, I decided I should do an update.
Skincare is not something to take lightly, especially when you are plagued with fair skin. First and foremost, make sure to get checked out annually. You can find the ABCs of moles here in a previous post.
What I have learned since Sunscreen Causes Cancer (part 1) is that there are several ingredients that they are concerned about, not just vitamin A.
The following ingredients are all found on the AVOID list:
(You can find explanations here or here.)
vitamin A (retinyl palmitate) found in 41% of sunscreens is photocarcinogenic, causing accelerated skin damage and elevated skin cancer risk when applied to skin exposed to sunlight.
Oxybenzone (a derivative of benzophenone) found in 60% of sunscreens is a hormone distrupting compound that penetrates the skin and enters the bloodstream.
Homosalate, Octy-methoxycinnamate (octinoxate), & Parabens also have estrogenic properties.
Padimate-O and Parsol 1789
Sprays or Powders "cloud the air with tiny particles of sunscreen that may not be safe to breathe."
Nothing to worry about, right? Geesh. How is one suppose to find a sunscreen minus these ingredients? I've looked. They are not in any drugstores.
And to make matters worse, "the Enviromental Working Group (EWG) just published an in-depth analysis of the safety and effectiveness of more than 700 name-brand sunscreens." Of the more than 700 sunscreens analyzed, the EWG found 84% of them were insufficent or unsafe.
I was deeply disturbed to find that neutrogena was not only NOT recommended, but was on the AVOID list. That is the brand that has always been recommended by my dermatologist.
So I phoned them. I have yet to hear back, so I phoned several others in town. Only one returned my phone call and told me (via the receptionist) that he had heard nothing of this and unless it is printed in a medical journal it means nothing of importance. Hmm..
Well, it wasn't in ladies' home journal as he implied and does the EWG not count?
Uyen of Ramble Road Ramblings asked her SIL who is a dermatologist and she said. "I wouldn't worry about it. Like the article says, there's no definitive proof of this whereas there is lots of definitive proof on the benefits of sunscreen. I think people like to look for excuses to not wear sunscreen! So bottom line, keep slathering it on!!"
These are the ingredients to LOOK FOR:
Avobenzone or Mexoryl SX
Creams with Broad-spectrum protection(both UVA and UVB coverage), water-resistant for beach, pool & exercise, SPF 30+ for beach & pool
Make sure to check out the EWG's 2010 Sunscreen Guide . You can look at a list of recommended sunscreens or type in your specific sunscreen to see how it ranks. Most of the preferred ones on their list are not recognizable names for me and I'm not sure where they can be found yet.
Not sure if this has answered any questions for anyone, but it's what I do when I feel helpless- read! The internet is a bit of a double edged sword. It has amazing amounts of information that can be wonderful and can also make ya search aimlessly in circles to no avail until you have an ulcer.
I've decided to use up the neutrogena I have while I search for sunscreens on the EWG's recommended list that have the ingredients to look for. At least that's the current game plan.
Pretty much we're damned if we do and we're damned if we don't. We are going to get cancer regardless according to the study unless we use the right sunscreens and it appears that no one really knows what that is.
I'm going to continue to use rash guards for the kiddos. Use a hat or umbrella at the pool if ya can. My public pool has really large umbrellas, but are hard to come by. And I will continue to be vigilant with my sunscreen. I find that when I don't use it my melasma and freckles tend to come out, so it is definitely doing something. Hopefully it is doing more good than bad in the long run.
That's all I have for now. I welcome opinions and any other info that I may have missed.
Thanks to all who have sent emails and voiced their concerns. It's nice to know I'm not alone.