Have you ever wondered: to what degree are chemicals applied to the skin absorbed into the body, and what are the possible toxic effects of those chemicals? Recently, the carcinogen benzene was detected at high levels in 21 different popular sunscreen products on the market. To add to the heightened concern, in the past several days another carcinogen, benzophenone, has been added to the list of toxic contaminants in popular sunscreens.
The FDA has been asked to investigate these toxic sunscreen contaminants, but in the meantime recognizes two ingredients as safe and effective (GRASE) for sunscreen: titanium dioxide and zinc oxide. "The issue of micro and nano sized titanium and zinc sunscreens is a very heady issue. The toxicity from physical blockers is not restricted to the size of the particles. There is some evidence of the generation of free radicals upon photocatalytic activity of these particles which requires further study," says Dr. Macrene. "It is important to note that the smaller the size of the particles, the greater the UVB absorbing capacity. This, the creation of nano sized particles is not just to mitigate the whitening effect of the sun blockers, but to improve performance as well. The optimum appears to be a combination of nano and micro-sized zinc plus micro size titanium.
Research suggests that the absorption of micro and nano-sized zinc particles is extremely low. In contrast, more attention has been given to the absorption and potential toxicity of titanium particles. Suffice it to say that much more study is required but that at this juncture the zinc particles that are in use in sunscreens appear to be safe."
While Dr. Macrene is working on a toxin-free sunscreen in her vision of Clean Beauty, she recommends using sun avoidance, sun-protective clothing, and clean mineral sunscreens such as those included in the MACRENE actives Tinted Moisturizer formula to protect the skin from sun damage and skin cancer.
The High Performance Tinted Moisturizer contains GRASE safe physical sunscreens, antioxidants, DNA and mitochondrial repair to target the effects of sun exposure. At MACRENE actives, we strive to conduct analysis on our products to identify all ingredients post-manufacture, an additional layer of quality control that we would like to see broadly enforced to ensure clean manufacturing practices.
Dr. Macrene wearing the High Performance Tinted Moisturizer in shade light
Don't skip these most neglected areas:
You must wear sunglasses and a hat as the eyes themselves can develop skin cancer, and only physical barriers will block the excessive rays.
Top of Hands
Dr. Macrene applies the High Performance Neck and Decolletage Treatment Lotion to her top of hands and arms before she applies sunscreen. That way the hands are protected with a blend of antioxidants and DNA repair with SPF on top.
You can reverse sun damage with Echium plantagineum seed oil and Goldenroot extract in the High Performance Lip Filler. If you’re spending time outside and your lip moisturizer doesn’t contain sunscreen, follow up with an SPF 30+ lip balm.