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Must Know Info About Benzene and Sunscreen

Must Know Info About Benzene and Sunscreen

A study released at the very end of May revealed that 78 sunscreens and after-sun products from 69 companies tested positive for benzene, a potential carcinogen that has been linked to blood cancers like leukemia. (Review the list .)

This does not mean that sunscreen is unsafe, nor does it mean you should stop using it. What this does mean is that you should check the list and toss any products you have that are on it if you have them.

It’s important to keep in mind that the affected products include both mineral- and chemical-based sunscreen lotions and sprays—as well as post-sun soothing gels. So if you think you’re in the clear because you choose to go “clean,” you’re not.

As a doctor, my patients’ health is my top priority, and it saddens me that consumers are not protected against these potentially-harmful chemicals when they purchase a product designed to protect their skin. As a dermatologist, it’s challenging enough to convince patients to apply an adequate amount of sunscreen daily (and re-apply it throughout the day), and this kind of bad sunscreen PR makes my job that much more difficult.

This benzene discovery affected several well-known brands, so I understand you may be unsure about which sunscreens are safe for you and your family. You can search the Environmental Working Group’s  or call the office for a recommendation.