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Could you be allergic to sunscreen?

by timetospa July 3, 2012
Could you be allergic to sunscreen?

Do you suffer from swelling, itching, or even blisters after a day in the sun? These reactions, which you may attribute to a low SPF rating on your sunscreen, may actually be an indication that you're allergic to sunscreen.

An allergic reaction to sunscreen products isn't always apparent right away. Poor reactions can occur immediately after use or can become apparent after years of use. The types of reactions you can have are equally diverse - they can emerge from direct contact with a lotion, which can produce a rash, or through a photoallergy, which occurs when sunlight reacts to the chemicals in sunscreen. The additives contained in lotions can ultimately have a negative effect on your skin.

"People do develop allergies to some sunscreen ingredients, particularly chemical blockers, but it's uncommon," said Joshua Zeichner, director of Cosmetic and Clinical Research in the Department of Dermatology at Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York City, to Allure Magazine.

Despite this, some places have opted to eliminate sunscreen use rather than risk the possibility of triggering an allergic reaction. In 49 states nationwide, school officials are banned from applying sunscreen to students, who are in turn prohibited from using sunscreen without a doctor's note, reports Today Health.

If you have an allergy to sunscreen, that doesn't mean you're impervious to sun damage. You should still protect yourself when you're outside this summer. Physical sunscreens like Colorscience Sunforgettable SPF 30 Brush Sunscreen feature micronized zinc oxide, an unbelievable component that can help reflect light and won't be absorbed into your skin, making them an ideal alternative to traditional sunscreens. 

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