Today I read a blood pressure raising post about sunscreens from a very well known blogger who is followed by a few hundred thousand people. The post wasn’t disturbing because of the topic, but rather because of the total lack of knowledge as well as the clear lack of research done before posting the article. Although the internet is a highway of information, it’s also the highway of opinions. When you put a lack of knowledge/research together with an uneducated opinion for thousands to follow, it can become a tad dangerous not to mention destructive for many of us who fight against the biased and false information shovelled out by “the big corporates” on a daily basis!
Ok, let’s call this person “X” for ease of reference and let’s start with these sunscreen ingredients that “X” talks about. Firstly, we all know that many of the products on the market today have “dodgy” ingredients and many a product has been passed as “safe” by organisations that are paid (aka bribed/forced/coerced) into passing these products. We also know that there are extremists in the world who may get their “knickers in a twist” about a Paraben in a product, yet say nothing about the chem-trails, pollution, car fumes and health destroying air we breathe. They’re usually the ones with the loudest voice and the biggest SUV. Like the client I had who was rather high up on the ladder at PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals), yet was completely happy to inject Botox into her wrinkles – double standards and the horrors of Botox and animal cruelty is for another day! *butterfly moment*
So, what I’m saying is that there are REALLY BAD synthetic products out there with SHOCKING ingredients, and then there are products out there with 3 out of 25 ingredients that aren’t 100% desirable. However, we have to weigh up the pros and cons of what these ingredients do and their scientifically researched affects on our body and/or skin. For instance, let’s take Parabens (a class of chemicals widely used as preservatives by the cosmetic, pharmaceutical and food industries) for example. The bacteria that can grow on a product is FAR more detrimental to our health and our skin than a product that has a less than 0.01% Paraben content. Can Parabens in COSMETICS cause cancer? Until someone provides me with good scientific evidence to suggest otherwise, I’m saying NO. If you’re not convinced, then do the research or stick with a product that has been manufactured under GMP (Good Manufacturing Practices) instead of some of the over-the-counter, cheap and nasty, supermarket brands that have no idea what GMP is, let alone use it to manufacture their products.
Oxybenzone (also known as benzophenone-3) : Really? BZ-3 is what we’re scare mongering about now? BZ-3 is found in over 600 products today, has been found to be non-toxic, non-irritating, non photo-toxic and has not been shown to have hormone-disrupting effects when used as directed in permitted concentrations. In fact, research to the contrary has been published by the European Union’s Scientific Committee for Cosmetic Products and Non-Food Products Intended for Consumers, which is why oxybenzone is still permitted as a viable sunscreen throughout the European Union. Trust me when I say the amount of BZ-3 in sunscreen doesn’t come close to the “permitted concentration”. It’s been in sunscreen for over 25 years and NOW we start jumping up and down about it!! Of all the chemical ingredients that we should be worrying about, the minuscule amounts of BZ-3 in a sunblock is way down at the bottom of the list! However, here’s a tip to everyone. Why not try using sunscreens that are recommended by COLIPA or are COLIPA compliant such as BIODERMA MAX SPF 50. That way you wouldn’t have to worry about the minuscule amounts of BZ-3 in the product. Why? Because it doesn’t contain any!
The last thing that blew my hat off was the suggestion to stay away from fragrance and rather go for an SPF that uses Essential Oils. Yes, right, well uhmmmm essential oils are not only flammable but many are known to increase Photo sensitivity – possibly more so than the Vitamin A “X” talks about. They can be detrimental to pregnant women, alcoholics, people with asthma, and those who suffer from epilepsy. I’m not even going to go down this road in this article – that’s for another day 🙂 Again this is about researching a topic …… enough said.
IN A NUTSHELL: UVA, UVB and UVC radiation causes cancer – scientifically proven over and over and over and over …… get the picture? And yet people are trying to dissect product ingredients in sunscreens that may, or may not, cause cancer. This logic is totally retarded, especially when someone like “X” tries to justify sun tanning and then doesn’t want to use chemical ingredients because it needs to “look good when I’m older”, or when the EWG (Environmental Working Group) flies off at a tangent because a few rats or mice got a tumour after being exposed to MASSIVE doses of Vitamin A or BZ-3 that no human being is ever going to be exposed to unless they eat the damn stuff! I have huge issues with animal testing but we need to keep things in perspective here. There was a lot of noise about which ingredients used in sunscreens cause cancer, and a lot of reference to EWG research, but not once was there any mention about the dangers of sun exposure. I guess it would be kinda silly to expose the truth about something you’re doing regularly. It would be a bit like me writing an article telling people not to eat chocolate 🙂
Oh, for the record; as much as I fight for many of the same things the EWG fight for, I don’t consider their “research” scientific or credible. In many cases, they are simply scare mongers with self set standards on research – sometimes with detrimental consequences.
Bottom line – if you don’t want to increase your chances of getting skin cancer, or aging for that matter – STAY OUT OF THE FLIPPEN SUN – simple as that! A human needs 15 minutes of unadulterated sun exposure per day to get their dose of Vitamin D for health benefits. Over and above that, you’re playing “solar roulette” – end of story!