Applying sunscreen can be a burden. It is inconvenient and messy, especially at the beach, driving, playing sports, or trying to coat a squirmy kid. So when spray sunscreens came around, many people breathed a sigh of relief (no pun intended :)). However, health professionals have developed significant concerns regarding the safety of spray sunscreens, from inadequate application to their potential for irritating and even damaging the health of our lungs.
. Here are the key concerns with spray sunscreens identified by the experts:
· NOT SAFE: The ingredients in spray sunscreens can cause irritation but could be downright hazardous when we breathe them in via aerosols. Common spray sunscreen ingredients such as titanium dioxide have been shown to cause cancer in rodent studies when inhaled in large amounts.
· DON’T USE ON KIDS: Spray sunscreens are popular with parents who have a hard time applying sunscreen to squirmy kids who will not stay still for one minute. However, there are several safety issues with applying spray sunscreens to children. The first issue is the difficulty in achieving an effective layer of sunscreen on the skin. Even a light breeze can greatly reduce the ability of aerosolized sunscreen to adhere to the skin and offer proper protection. Another issue is the contamination of spray sunscreens with hazardous and even carcinogenic ingredients. Recently, many spray sunscreens were recalled due to contamination with benzene, a known carcinogen. Last but not least, is the risk of inhalation. Spray sunscreens labels include warnings that it should not be inhaled or applied to the face. Children's natural squirminess, however, increases the risk that the product is not sprayed safely and effectively. Further, children's small size increases the adverse effect of the inhaled material.
· DON’T USE CLOSE TO OPEN FLAME: Almost all spray sunscreens contain alcohol, which is flammable. This is especially dangerous if you are close to an open flame. The Food and Drug Administration has reported incidents of people suffering severe burns requiring hospitalization when wearing spray sunscreen. This can happen even after the wearer feels the sunscreen has dried on their skin. Additionally, such burns are extra dangerous for small children due to their smaller size.
If you absolutely have to apply spray sunscreens, the American Academy of Dermatology recommends the following precautions (https://www.aad.org/media/stats-sunscreen):
Spray until your or your child’s skin glistens and rub it in afterwards to ensure even coverage.
Do not inhale these products or apply near heat, open flame, or while smoking. To avoid inhaling spray sunscreen, never spray it around or near the face or mouth.
Spray the sunscreen into your hands and then use your hands to apply it on your face.
When applying spray sunscreens on children, be aware of the direction of the wind to avoid inhalation.
Spray sunscreens are certainly convenient, but this convenience can come at a steep price for our and our children's health.
With LUNAESCENT, you don’t need to rely on spray sunscreens! Simply apply your sunscreen (cream or lotion) to the silicone pad (start with a smaller amount than the instructions because there will be no wastage or absorption by your fingers and apply more if needed). Dab on the intended skin area to divide up the product and rub in for perfect absorption. No oily/slippery/sticky hands and fingers. Only protected skin!