Something strange is happening in the sunscreen aisle. Shelves that had been stocked with bottles claiming SPF, or sun protection factor, ratings of 30 now have products that trumpet SPF ratings of 55, 70, even 110+. But a new study of 500 beach and sports sunscreens recommends just 8% of the products tested.
According to the 2010 Sunscreen Guide from the Environmental Working Group, the issues involve ingredients, inadequate sun protection and application methods.
The report from the Washington-based environmental research group says 60% of beach and sport sunscreens contain the chemical oxybenzene, which is linked to hormone disruption. About 40% include retinyl palmitate, a type of vitamin A that the group says may hasten the development of skin cancer.