Written on July 31, 2014 at 11:35 am , by Bethany Cianciolo
The United States might finally be catching up with the rest of the world in skincare and sun protection.
The House passed a bill Monday that would expedite the Food and Drug Administration’s approval process for new sunscreen ingredients—many of which are old news to Europe, Asia and Australia.
The FDA hasn’t approved a new ingredient in 15 years (seriously!), and some applications have been pending approval for more than 10. The reason? Many claim it’s a simple overflow of approval work and a lack of information. Because sunscreen is viewed as a cosmetic product in the EU, there isn’t much hard data available on whether or not these ingredients are completely safe, thus stalling the process.
Now the bill is headed to the Senate, and if it passes, The Sunscreen Innovation Act would slap 18-month deadlines on the FDA for approving new applications, but would only apply to ingredients that have been sold outside of the U.S. for at least five years. Many of those ingredients make sunscreen easier to apply and prolong its effect, meaning more protection for us without the goopy, sticky mess.
Fingers crossed for better ingredients and healthier skin!
Photo by Laura Doss
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Written on June 26, 2014 at 9:54 am , by Bethany Cianciolo
Apply sunscreen. Jump in pool. Dry off. Repeat.
It’s the beat of summer, but imagine being able to skip one of ‘em—applying sunscreen—without any consequences. What are we talking about? Drinking sunscreen.
Say what?! Yeah, that’s how we reacted when we heard that Osmosis Skincare said it’s possible. The company recently released a drinkable UV Neutralizer, which apparently provides three hours of ultraviolet protection with just one teaspoon, claims creator Dr. Ben Johnson. He says he discovered how to print radio frequency waves on water molecules, and found waves that cancel out UVA and UVB radiation. When you ingest the Neutralizer, it supposedly vibrates frequencies that neutralize the sun.
While the product sounds wonderful and heavily researched, the FDA has yet to approve any of the product’s claims.
“If this thing really worked, the American Academy of Dermatology would be all over it,” says Elissa Lunder, M.D., owner of Dermatology Partners Inc. and FITNESS advisory board member. “This would’ve been presented at the American Academy of Dermatology meeting and it would be in all of the journals, and it’s not. I wouldn’t drink it, would you?”
Right now, we’re gonna have to pass, especially since the product has only been tested on 50 people. But the concept is weirdly cool. Jessica Weiser, M.D., a dermatologist at New York Dermatology Group, is also skeptical, but is convinced that ingestible sunscreen is where the future of sun protection is headed.
“They’re trying to say that this is going to give you the equivalent of an SPF 30, and I think that would be great if that was true,” she says. “Until it’s approved by the FDA, I don’t think it’s something that I would recommend replacing your normal topical sunscreen with. I think it’s a promising future—I just don’t think that we’re quite there yet.”
In the meantime, Weiser stresses the importance of reapplying sunscreen (most of them are only active for about two hours) and paying attention to water-resistant labels to see how long you can splash around in the water before needing to reapply. “The amount of a shot glass should cover your body every two hours, or about a teaspoon to the full face,” she says.
Lunder recommends using a sunscreen with zinc and titanium dioxide because they act as physical blockers rather than chemical blockers. “It’s sort of like the next best thing to wearing sun-protective clothing,” she says. “The zinc and titanium provides against UVA and UVB, which is really important.” (UVA radiation causes wrinkles, and UVB radiation causes burning.)
We’ll be using these easy sun-safe tips this summer, and in the meantime, remain hopeful that Osmosis Skincare’s new product will undergo the testing and credibility it needs to become an effective sun protectant. But for now, we’re not buying it.
Photo courtesy of Osmosis Skincare
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Written on May 21, 2012 at 1:00 pm , by Colleen Travers
It’s only Monday, but if you’re like us, you are already thinking about Memorial Day. To kick off the long weekend, Banana Boat spokesperson and natural living expert Sara Snow want you to make a pledge to get outside more. In a recent visit with Snow to the FITNESS offices, we were shocked to hear that kids spend an average of seven hours watching TV or on the computer and only seven minutes playing outside. To help get kids unplug, Snow and Banana Boat are launching a 101 Days of Summer Pledge. Here’s the scoop:
- Visit the Banana Boat Facebook page and click on the 101 Days of Summer Pledge. For every pledge made, Banana Boat will donate one bottle of its latest Natural Reflect Lotion to the Hole in the Wall Gang Camp, a summer camp organization for children with cancer and other serious illnesses.
- Each week, starting from Memorial Day through Labor Day you can visit the 101 Days of Summer Pledge tab for a week of activities you and your kids can do outside. All of the ideas are inexpensive and range for every age so everyone can be included. Check out some of the sample ideas below:
Every dog has its day: Take the dogs on a walk or play fetch to give them some much needed outdoor time. The kids will get a kick out of playing with a new furry friend!
Local tourist: Discover new places in your town with the kids. A park, reservoir or garden could all be great, natural places to learning something new while enjoying a day in the sun.
Popsicle social: Squeeze ripe oranges for fresh orange juice and freeze in popsicle trays. Once they are ready, enjoy this ice cold treat outside in the warm sun.
- Upload pictures of your family doing the recommended outdoor activities through the tab and enter to win some sweet summertime loot! Weekly winners will be selected to win a basket of sun safe goodies from Banana Boat and one lucky winner will win a trip to the Grand Tetons!
So toss the video games and start tossing the ball this weekend. Your family vacation depends on it!
Written on May 4, 2012 at 1:43 pm , by Karla Walsh
Unless you’re an elite runner, you’ve likely been intimidated toeing the starting line at a race. This month, there is a stress-free opportunity to complete your race—while helping a good cause—no matter where you live!
From now until May 31, you can sign up to Outrun (or walk) the Sun and complete a race on the day and at the distance of your choosing. Your $12 entry fee will support skin cancer education and melanoma research, so don’t forget your sunscreen, sunglasses and hat! It’s the perfect time to practice and support sun safety, as May is National Skin Cancer and Melanoma Awareness Month. Scary stat: Melanoma kills one American every hour and more than two million cases of skin cancer are diagnosed each year.
Runners, walkers and athletes of all kinds are often at higher risk than the general population, due to their frequent outdoor pursuits. So participants will receive more than the pride that comes with finishing a race—they will also get a reminder about the importance of sun safety.
For more about Outrun the Sun, click here.
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Written on August 17, 2011 at 5:25 pm , by Samantha Shelton
Skin experts recommend slathering on SPF early and often to protect from harmful rays. As many times as our dermatologists drill this in our heads, however, we admit to occasionally forgetting to reapply as often as we should. Thankfully, we found a simple reminder: SpaFinder’s “I Will Reflect” bracelet.
This cute little number is only $4.95 and has an adjustable strap so it can fit all wrist sizes. It starts off as a light white color, then darkens to purple when you’re exposed to harmful UVA/UVB rays. Once it turns dark purple, you’ll know it’s time to reapply sunscreen or head indoors.
The bracelets are part of a national campaign by SpaFinder to promote awareness about early melanoma detection and prevention. More tips and articles about skin safety can be found on their website, and you can order a bracelet of your own here.
Now tell us: How do you stay safe in the sun?