Fewer Sunscreens Contain Endocrine Disrupting Substances

8. jul 2015

Sunscreens contain fewer problematic chemicals than previous years, reveals a test from the Danish Consumer Council THINK Chemicals. Still nine out of 51 sunscreens contain substances which are suspected to be hormone disrupting.

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Sunscreen sun cream
Photo: Anne Beck Christensen

Sunscreen fare better than previous years

Did you use sunscreen during the summer? Most likely the answer is ‘yes’.

Sunscreen is a highly popular defense against sunburns on beaches and other sunny spots throughout the world. Therefore the Danish Consumer Council THINK Chemicals examined the ingredient list of 51 sunscreens on the Danish and European market in search of endocrine disrupting or allergenic substances.

“Compared to tests from previous years it is now much easier for consumers to find a sun cream without perfume or substances which are suspected to be endocrine disrupting. The industry deserves praise for that,” says Christel Søgaard Kirkeby, project manager in the Danish Consumer Council THINK Chemicals.

Endocrine disrupting substances in three sunscreens of same brand

The sunscreens in the test in general fare much better than in previous years. But nine contain substances suspected to be endocrine disrupting and 15 contain perfume that can be allergenic.

As a result there is still room for improvement, Christel Søgaard Kirkeby believes.

“For example, all three sunscreens in the test from the brand Piz Buin contain substances suspected to be endocrine disrupting. We advise consumers not to buy any of these three sunscreens,” she says.

Hormone disrupting chemicals are suspected to cause several ailments such as declining semen quality in boys and too early puberty in girls.

Sun creams for children face criticism

The Danish Consumer Council THINK Chemicals particularly criticise that some of the sunscreens for children contain substances suspected to be endocrine disrupting. The sunscreens in question are from the brands Nivea and Garnier.

“It is quite disappointing to find two sunscreens for children that contain both perfume and substances suspected to be endocrine disrupting,” says Christel Søgaard Kirkeby.

The Danish Consumer Council most recently had a major test of sunscreens in 2013. On that occasion seven out of 17 sunscreens contained substances suspected to be hormone disrupting.

Selected sunscreens that receive a good review from the Danish Consumer Council THINK chemicals.

  • Derma Eco Sollotion SPF 30 baby
  • Apotekets Sol lotion SPF 15
  • Matas Sollotion SPF 15
  • Levevis Sun protection SPF 15
  • Änglamark Sun lotion for children and adults SPF 15

Selected sunscreens that the Danish Consumer Council THINK chemicals cannot recommend

  • Nivea Sun Kids moisturising sun spray faktor 30
  • Garnier Ambre Solaire Resisto kids faktor 30
  • Piz Buin Moisturising sun lotion SPF 15
  • P20 10 hours sun protection SFP 30

For further questions regarding the test, please contact Christel Søgaard Kirkeby, project manager in the Danish Consumer Council THINK chemicals, phone (0045) 41 88 16 12 or email csk@fbr.dk.

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