Researchers find sunscreen becomes toxic when exposed to chlorine

June 30, 2017 by  
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Most of us are quick to reach for our sunscreen before heading outdoors in the summer , but that might not be a great idea – especially for swimmers. New research reveals that sunscreen becomes toxic when exposed to chlorine, sometimes resulting in kidney and liver dysfunctions, as well as nervous system disorders. The study, conducted by Lomonosov Moscow State University, was published in the journal Chemosphere . The researchers were reportedly stunned to discover that chlorine — a chemical commonly used in the US and UK to disinfect water by killing bacteria — breaks down suncream into other potentially-hazardous chemicals. Specifically, the ingredient Avobenzone is what breaks down into hazardous components when mixed with chlorinated water. As Phys.org reports , Avobenzone was approved by the FDA in 1988 due to its ability to absorb ultraviolet light by converting the energy of the light into thermal energy . Every year, it is regularly applied by millions of people worldwide — a fact which makes this finding so concerning. Related: Hawaii aims to ban coral reef-killing chemical sunscreens Dr. Albert Lebedev, the study’s author, said, “On the basis of the experiments one could make a conclusion that a generally safe compound transforms in the water and forms more dangerous products. In spite of the fact that there are no precise toxicological profiles for the most established products, it’s known that acetyl benzenes and phenols, especially chlorinated ones, are quite toxic .” Scientists are now looking into a suitable alternative for avobenzone that won’t break down when exposed to chlorination or bromination of fresh and sea water. “Studying the products of transformation of any popular cosmetics is very important as very often they turn out to be much more toxic and dangerous than their predecessors,” said Lebedeve. “In principle, basing on such researches, one could obtain results, which could restrict or even put under a ban the usage of one or another product, and preserve health of millions of people.” Via Express.co.uk , Phys Images via Pixabay , SheKnows

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Researchers find sunscreen becomes toxic when exposed to chlorine

Hawaii aims to ban coral reef-killing chemical sunscreens

February 20, 2017 by  
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For a long time we’ve been told to slather on sunblock to protect our skin from harsh ultraviolet radiation, but as an unintended consequence, filters in those sunscreens are washing off into the oceans and likely harming coral reefs . Now one Hawaii lawmaker is taking action. Fearing damage to the state’s fragile coral ecosystem, Senator Will Espero introduced a bill that would ban sunscreen with octinoxate and oxybenzone. Researchers detected concentrations of oxybenzone 30 times higher than levels thought to be safe for coral in Hawaii waters. The state’s Department of Land and Natural Resources said last September, “Recent studies have shown that oxybenzone causes deformities in coral larvae (planulae), making them unable to swim, settle out, and form new coral colonies. It also increase the rate at which coral bleaching occurs. This puts coral reef health at risk, and reduces resiliency to climate change .” Related: 40% of the top sunscreens don’t meet official guidelines for sun protection Haereticus Environmental Laboratory executive director Craig Downs, whose research influenced Espero’s bill, told KITV4, “Oxybenzone – it kills [coral]. It turns them into zombies if it doesn’t kill them outright.” The bill would ban sunscreens containing oxybenzone and octinoxate unless a user has a medical prescription. Unsurprisingly, sunscreen companies like L’Oréal have fought back, claiming there’s not enough evidence to validate such a ban. But Espero told Scientific American the science is on his side, and many people – from fishers to sailors to ocean sports enthusiasts – are behind the measure. According to TreeHugger, 14,000 tons of sunscreen wash off into oceans every single year, possibly exacerbating the worldwide coral bleaching issue. If you’re worried about sunburn but also want to consider your impact on the environment , check out the Environmental Working Group ‘s safe sunscreen guide . The organization lists several brands whose products meet their criteria. Via TreeHugger Images via Michael Dorausch on Flickr and Pixabay

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Hawaii aims to ban coral reef-killing chemical sunscreens

40% of the top sunscreens don’t meet official guidelines for sun protection

July 8, 2016 by  
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When summer arrives, people turn to sunscreen to protect themselves from the sun . But a new study casts major concern over whether the most popular sunscreen brands actually protect users . A team of researchers led by a dermatologist scrutinized highly rated sunscreens on Amazon, and uncovered a shocking statistic: 40 percent of those sunscreens don’t comply with American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) guidelines for sun protection. Dermatologist Shuai Xu worked with colleagues at Northwestern University and the Duke University School of Medicine to publish an original investigation into sunscreen in the journal JAMA Dermatology in early July. Xu’s team found 6,500 sunscreens on Amazon. Based on how many customers reviewed a product and how highly they rated the product, Xu’s team selected the top 1 percent – 65 sunscreens – to study. 26 of the products ” did not adhere to AAD guidelines .” Related: EWG’s 2016 best and worst sunscreen lists are out – is your favorite listed? AAD guidelines say a sunscreen should have a SPF of at least 30 (and it should be noted anything past SPF 50 likely doesn’t offer more protection ), be resistant to water, and protect against UVA and UVB rays (labeled as “broad spectrum”). Some of the sunscreens that failed to meet guidelines are Blue Lizard Australian Sunscreen, Sensitive SPF 30+; Neutrogena Oil Free Moisture SPF 35; and Eucerin Daily Protection Moisturizing Face Lotion, according to Xu’s study . All three of those sunscreens had the required SPF and were labeled broad spectrum but were not water resistant. The researchers found water resistant sunscreens were generally more expensive. They also discovered sunscreen prices aren’t necessarily related to SPF. Xu said , “As doctors, we want to have some input and insight into what consumers are using, because sunscreen is a really important part of skin health . We think of sunscreen as a form of topical medicine . It’s not a luxury product.” Via The Washington Post Images via Wikimedia Commons and Skeyndor Cosmética Científica on Flickr

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40% of the top sunscreens don’t meet official guidelines for sun protection

EWG’s 2016 best and worst sunscreen lists are outis your favorite listed?

May 30, 2016 by  
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The heat is on, and the sunscreen should be, too. Choosing the best sunscreen for your family is an increasingly challenging task, especially as companies change their formulas every few years. When it comes to the most effective protection against the sun’s harmful UV rays, not all sunscreens are created equally. Fortunately, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) compiles a list of the best and worst sunscreens on the market each year , broken down by products for adults and kids. This year’s update has been published, and some of the brands listed might surprise you. The search for the perfect sunscreen is often intense. If it smells funny, feels weird, or is too difficult to apply, it might be difficult to get some members of your family to even use it in the first place. At the heart of the matter, though, is that many sunscreens on the market simply don’t perform the way they promise. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has made some progress in recent years with labeling regulations that prevent manufacturers from making claims that are patently misleading (remember “sweatproof” sunscreen?) but the agency has dragged its feet when it comes to pinning down rules for labeling efficacy rates. That leaves folks in a bit of a lurch, but consumer education groups do the heavy lifting to help people make important decisions long before the summer sun begins sizzling our skin. Related: 6 Handy apps for preventing skin cancer all year long EWG also publishes an annual list of the best and worst scoring sunscreens for kids, both of which have been updated for 2016. EWG rates all sorts of personal care and cleaning products based on the environmental impacts and potential health hazards related to chemical ingredients. The resulting score is intended to help consumers better understand the risks associated with different products, thereby alleviating some of the agony of choosing the best sun protection for your family. Via Mother Jones Images via Rachel Zack/Flickr and  Shutterstock

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EWG’s 2016 best and worst sunscreen lists are outis your favorite listed?

China’s eco-civilization plan calls for 23% forest cover by 2020

May 30, 2016 by  
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Besides the United States, China has done more than any other country to contribute to climate change . But while China’s greenhouse gas emissions are rapidly warming the planet, the Asian nation is quickly shifting its focus to climate change mitigation to ensure a sustainable biosphere for future generations. According to a new United Nations report , China plans to build an “ecological civilization” that could be a model for the rest of the world. The project includes an initiative to cover nearly one quarter of the country with forests by 2020. The report, titled “Green is gold: The strategy and actions of China’s ecological civilization,” was launched at the UN Environmental Assembly in Nairobi, Kenya. Zhu Guangyao, executive vice president of the Chinese Ecological Civilization Research and Promotion Association, called ecological civilization a new concept in the development of human civilization that requires respect for nature. “The outdated view that man can conquer nature and ignore the bearing capacity of resources and the environment should be completely abandoned,” said Guangyao. “Conscientious efforts should be made to live in harmony with nature, allowing for a new approach to modernization characterized by such co-existence.” Related: China restores great swaths of denuded forests with exemplary conservation program According to the report, other targets by 2020 include cutting water consumption by 23 percent, energy consumption by 15 percent and carbon emissions per unit of GDP by 18 percent. The eco-civilization blueprint also pledges by 2020 to increase prairie vegetation coverage by 56 percent, reclaiming more than half of reclaimable desert and preserving at least 35 percent of the natural shorelines. Forests are an important part of climate change mitigation because along with other ecosystems they can act as carbon sinks, sequestering billions of tons of atmospheric carbon — helping to cool the biosphere and reverse global warming. + Report: Green is gold: The strategy and actions of China’s ecological civilization Via Climate Action News Images via Wikipedia

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China’s eco-civilization plan calls for 23% forest cover by 2020

Slovenia built a habitable structure with latticed wooden bookshelves

May 30, 2016 by  
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The project responds to the Biennale’s theme “Reporting from the Front” by functioning like an abstract home doubling as a curated library that allows visitors to explore the concept of dwelling. It is also a nod to the seminal 1956 Patio & Pavilion project by Alison and Peter Smithson. Curators Aljoša Dekleva and Tina Gregori? of Dekleva Gregori? Architects conceived an inhabitable wooden structure made of a latticed system of bookshelves that marries public and private space. It creates a temporary domestic environment based on user experience. Related: Australian Pavilion will become a pool for 2016 Venice Architecture Biennale The use of wood reflects the historical connection between Venice and Slovenia. Slovenia also has a very developed timber industry, which explains the architects’ desire to explore its potential use in creating domestic spaces. They used low-tech and high-tech construction techniques in building the structure. The main cavity acts as both a living space and library. + Dekleva Gregori? Architects

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Slovenia built a habitable structure with latticed wooden bookshelves

Suncayr Color-Charging Marker Lets You Know When Its Time to Reapply Sunscreen

October 26, 2014 by  
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Sunscreen can be great protection against harmful ultraviolet rays–that is if you can remember to reapply it every couple of hours. Enter the Suncayr marker, a James Dyson Award -winning design that uses color-changing ink to remind us when to reapply sunscreen. The application process is easy: users draw any design using the marker on their skin before applying sunscreen over the area; after the sunscreen is rubbed or washed away, the ink will change color to let you know when its time to reapply. READ MORE> Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: color changing ink , james dyson award , sun block , Suncayr , Suncayr marker , sunscreen , sunscreen reapplication , uv rays

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Suncayr Color-Charging Marker Lets You Know When Its Time to Reapply Sunscreen

Due To Industry Pressure FDA Delays New Sunscreen Labeling Rules for 6 Months

May 20, 2012 by  
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The FDA announced on May 11 that they’ll be delaying implementation of  pending sunscreen regulations that were supposed to mandate how sunscreens are labeled and marketed.  These changes that would have make it easier for consumers to choose safe and effective sunscreens have been put off, apparently due to pressure from cosmetic industry groups.  This means that unfortunately, we’ll have to spend another summer with inadequately labeled sunscreen. Click ahead to learn more about the regulations and why they’ve been delayed. READ MORE > Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: FDA sunscreen labeling , FDA sunscreen labeling rules , FDA sunscreen regulation , safe sunscreen , sunscreen , sunscreen labeling , sunscreen labeling rules , sunscreen regulation , sunscreen safety

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Due To Industry Pressure FDA Delays New Sunscreen Labeling Rules for 6 Months

Fish Pedicures Could Cause Dangerous Bacterial Infections, CDC Warns

May 20, 2012 by  
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Photo by  Shutterstock It turns out that fish pedicures aren’t just a bizarre beauty ritual — they’re also potentially dangerous. This week, the  U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published a new report that examined the types of bacteria associated with  Garra rufa , an inch-long toothless carp that nibbles away at dead skin. Citing the risk of dangerous skin and soft-tissue infections for people with open sores, skin cuts, underlying medical conditions such as  diabetes , the CDC warned against the practice. Our advice? Stick with the pumice stone and leave the fish alone. READ MORE > Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Aeromonas , beauty , beauty regulations , CDC , center for disease control , diabetes , doctor fish , Fish pedicures , health concerns , pathogens , toothless carp

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Fish Pedicures Could Cause Dangerous Bacterial Infections, CDC Warns

Australians Ditching Sunscreen and Risking Skin Cancer to Avoid Nanoparticles

February 24, 2012 by  
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Australia reportedly has one of the highest rates of skin cancer in the world, so why are many Aussies opting to ditch their sunscreen ? According to a recent study, 17 percent of the respondents down-under said they would rather risk getting skin cancer than wear lotions that contain nanoparticles . The results of the study highlight a growing concern about nanoscale products and the dangers they pose to public health. READ MORE > Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: australia , eco-fashion , Ethical Fashion , green fashion , nanomaterials , nanoparticles , nanotechnology , silver nanoparticles , silver nanotechnology , sunscreen , Sustainable Fashion , sustainable style

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Australians Ditching Sunscreen and Risking Skin Cancer to Avoid Nanoparticles

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