Consumer Reports asks FDA to step up its current review process for sunscreens

Consumer Reports asks FDA to step up its current review process for sunscreens

When any individual purchases a sunscreen bottle, he thinks it can be trusted to protect the skin. But numerous sunscreens have failed to achieve the sun protection factor claim on their label in the independent lab tests of Consumer Reports created to provide the best comparative consumer ratings.

Relying on the findings, Consumer Reports has given its test results to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), urging the agency to improve its existing review process meant for sunscreens to ensure that consumers get the protection they thing they’re purchasing. In a response to Consumer Reports, the FDA has asked for more data on the tests.

Recently the matter of SPF performance heated up when Senator Charles Schumer (D-New York) asked the FDA to initiate a full-on investigation of deceptive SPF marketing, citing latest testing of Consumer Reports.

Schumer said, “There is simply no doubt about it—some consumers are being totally burned when they buy sunscreen, which is why the FDA must give sunscreen labels the third degree”.

The FDA has ordered sunscreen manufacturers to test their products again to support their SPF claims and to test for broad-spectrum protection in case a broad-spectrum claim is present on the label. But the FDA hasn’t confirmed the testing, want manufacturers to come up with findings, or perform pre-market testing itself. Manufacturers are required to test just latest products or reformulations of older products, not every produced batch of a sunscreen.

In case the agency suspects something fishy, it can order a manufacturer to provide the results of its testing immediately. Sunscreen manufacturers police themselves quite often. While making the announcement, Schumer asked the FDA to instead test sunscreens and verify actual SPF numbers.