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Alumier Skin Experts / May 22, 2018

Know Your Sunscreen Ingredients

Sunscreen is one of the best anti-aging products out there, not to mention being completely essential in everyday life for protecting your skin from the sun’s harmful rays which can cause fine lines, wrinkles, dehydration, pigmentation, melasma and skin cancer. However, it’s important to know the facts when selecting your sunscreen–some can do more harm than good! Kind of confusing since it’s supposed to be helping to prevent damage, right?

Sunscreens come in two different kinds of formulations: physical and chemical. Let’s dissect why not all sunscreens are made equal.

Physical sunscreens use ingredients like zinc oxide and titanium dioxide to deflect the sun’s rays. These ingredients contain large particles that safely stay on the outer layer of your skin. Since they’re bigger, they’re not able to penetrate into the deeper layers of the skin. They’ll also take longer to breakdown when in the sun–physical filters are the most stable and scatter and reflect UV radiation, rather than absorbing it. Physical sunscreens are also well-suited to all skin types and conditions.

Chemical sunscreens are often formulated with ingredients like oxybenzone, octinoxate, enzacamene, octocrylene and homosalate. While chemical sunscreens will offer protection against sun damage, these chemical sunscreen filters are made up of small particles that are absorbed into the skin and ultimately your body. Some of these particles have even been found in plasma and urine.

Chemical sunscreens work by absorbing UV rays, rather than deflecting them. Their effectiveness will also break down faster than physical filters when in the sunlight.

Many studies in the past decade have found that these chemical sunscreen filters could be doing more harm than good. The health hazards of these chemicals include hormone disruption, skin irritation or allergy and skin damage that occurs when sunlight interacts with suncreen chemicals.

Oxybenzone has been found in mother’s milk, is a known skin allergen and hormone disruptor. Despite all of the research determining the health hazards of oxybenzone, 80% of chemical sunscreens sold in the United States and Canada contain oxybenzone.

Octinoxate has also been found in blood, urine and mother’s milk. It is a known endocrine disruptor and can disturb thyroid function and has also been shown to increase proliferation in breast cancer cells. Studies have found a reduction in sperm count in those who have been exposed to octinoxate.

Both oxybenzone and octinoxate have recently been banned by the state government in Hawaii due to research that has shown a negative impact on the maine environment. The study found that the chemicals seep into young coral and contribute to coral bleaching leading to the elimination of nutrients that sustain other marine life.

AlumierMD’s sunscreens all contain physical filters, making them a safe and effective choice for sun protection. The Moisture Matte sunscreen comes in three different tinted shades, a great choice for protecting the skin while providing coverage and mattifying your complexion. This product is perfect for normal to oily skin types. The Sheer Hydration sunscreen comes in a tinted and untinted version, is formulated for all skin types and leaves skin with a dewy glow. The Clear Shield sunscreen is oil free and contains niacinamide, which helps to soothe and relieve redness, making it a well-suited to acne-prone and sensitive skin types.
Regardless of your skin’s needs, AlumierMD has a sunscreen for you.


MR Janjua, B Kongshoj et al. (2008). Sunscreens in human plasma and urine after repeated whole-body topical application. Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology, 22(4), 456-461. 3083.2007.02492.x/abstract

Published in Environmental Health Perspectives Link to mention: http://www.collective-evolution. com/2016/04/06/what-happens-to-your- skin-when-youswitch-to-cosmetics-with-less-chemicals/

Axelstad, M., Boberg, J., Hougaard, K. S. et al (2011). Effects of pre-and postnatal exposure to the UV-filter Octyl Methoxycinnamate (OMC) on the reproductive, auditory and neurological development of rat offspring. Toxicology and applied pharmacology, 250(3), 278-290. Link to abstract: pubmed/21059369 Link to purchase full article: science/article/pii/S0041008X10004242 $39.34 USD

Darbre, P. D. (2006). Environmental oestrogens, cosmetics and breast cancer. Best practice & research clinical endocrinology & metabolism, 20(1), 121-143. Link to abstract: pubmed/16522524 Full article for $39.95

Schlumpf, M., Cotton, B., Conscience, M. et al (2001). In vitro and in vivo estrogenicity of UV screens. Environmental health perspectives,109(3), 239. Link to abstract: PMC1240241/ Link to full article: PMC1240241/pdf/ehp0109-000239.pdf

Boas, M., Feldt-Rasmussen, U., & Main, K. M. (2012). Thyroid effects of endocrine disrupting chemicals. Molecular and Cellular Endocrinology, 355(2), 240-248. Link to article: file: ///Users/alumiercomp-fg/Downloads/ Thyroid+effects+of+endocrine+disrupting+chemicals%20(1).pdf

Hanson, KM et al. Sunscreen enhancement of UV-induced reactive oxygen species in the skin (2006). Free Radical Biology and Medicine, 41(8),1205-1212 Link to abstract: S0891584906004138

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