Sunscreen Chemicals Accumulate in Body at High Levels

A new study by the FDA shows that common active ingredients in sunscreen are absorbed into the body at higher concentrations than once believed.

The study published this January in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) studied six common active ingredients in popular sunscreens: avobenzone, oxybenzone, octocrylene, homosalate, octisalate and octinoxate.

The JAMA published study found:

all 6 of the tested active ingredients administered in 4 different sunscreen formulations were systemically absorbed and had plasma concentrations that surpassed the FDA threshold for potentially waiving some of the additional safety studies for sunscreens. These findings do not indicate that individuals should refrain from the use of sunscreen.

The study is pointing out that all 6 active ingredients were found present in the body at levels where the FDA calls for additional testing to determine potential negative effects and risks such as cancer, birth defects, and other negative outcomes.

The FDA is calling for additional study of potential outcomes from higher body absorption of ingredients in popular sunscreens. in a post on its website continues to encourage the use of sunscreen:

Given the recognized public health benefits of sunscreen use, the FDA strongly advises all Americans to continue to use sunscreens in conjunction with other sun protective measures (such as protective clothing) as this important rulemaking effort moves forward.

Read: 9 Things That Most People Don’t Know About Sunscreen


JAMA: Effect of Sunscreen Application on Plasma Concentration of Sunscreen Active Ingredients

FDA – Shedding More Light on Sunscreen Absorption