‘Broad Spectrum’ Means UVA Plus UVB Protection
A SUMMARY From Web MD Health News…June 14, 2011
Sunscreen labels will carry a “broad spectrum” label to show they offer some protection against UVA radiation as well as UVB radiation, according to a long-awaited new rule from the FDA.
New Information on Sunscreen Labels: Sunscreen labels will state a clear message about how long water-resisitant sunscreens maintain protection after a person swims or sweats. labels will specify either 40 or 80 minutes of protection. Those that are not water resistant will have to carry a warning to that effect.
Sunscreen labels will be able to claim that a product protects against skin cancer if it has an SPF rating of 15 or higher, and that the product can claim to protect against sun-related premature skin aging if it has the broad-spectrum designation. However, products will not be allowed to claim they “block” the sun or that they prevent skin cancer or aging. They also can’t say they last for more than two hours, unless proof of longer protection is submitted to the FDA. These new rules will take effect by the summer of 2012, although some sunscreen makers may change their labels before that deadline.
Spray Sunscreen Questioned: The FDA is asking the manufacturers of spray sunscreen products to prove how well the products work when used by consumers. There’s concern that people may use too little of the products, thus failing to get the level of sun protection the label would lead them to expect. Spray sunscreen makers also will have to prove there’s no danger from accidentally inhaling the products while applying them to children and adults. See part 1