Chemical Suncreen vs No sunscreen?

Thread: Chemical Suncreen vs No sunscreen?

  1. #1

    Chemical Suncreen vs No sunscreen?

    Hey everyone! So unfortunately I just bought a Neutrogena SPF 100+ sunscreen today, thinking that it was going to be amazing however, I just read through a ton of posts saying that chemical sunscreens are harmful and dangerous. So, I live in Jamaica and I've been in countless pharmacies and NOT ONE has any physical sunscreens with Zinc Oxide or even Titanium Dioxide. Every single sunscreen sold down here that I've seen is a chemical one. So now I'm left to wonder, which is better- using the chemical sunscreen or just simply not using sunscreen at all?

    A little about me: I remain mostly indoors and probably come into direct contact with the sun maybe 10 minutes max for the day, so I don't believe simply not using sunscreen at all would be that bad. I am trying to remove a permatan however, and have just started the exfoliation phase, using Retin-A as an exfoliant.

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

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  3. #2
    Honestly, I use chemical sunscreen and a combo physical/chemical sunscreen every day. I'm willing to take the chance of possible health risks since I have very little melanin and live in a sunny part of the US and the risk of skin cancer and premature skin aging is high, especially since I do peels, use lightening treatments, and am on Retin-A. I don't really go out in the sun during peak hours myself, but occasionally I'll work outside and I want to be safe.

    Some chemical sunscreens, yes, do not have a good safety track record, and there is some emerging evidence that supports that certain chemical sunscreens (I believe oxybenzone is the big one) could possibly have adverse health risks. I do avoid certain filters (and certain combinations like avobenzone and oxinocate or avobenzone and uncoated zinc oxide) because of their lack of photostability or because they are sensitising for me.

    But, the chemical sunscreen I use on my body is the single best sunscreen I've ever used in terms of protecting my skin and preventing new freckles and keeping my skin from reacting to the sun adversely. I also pair my sunscreens, regardless of whether they're chemical or physical, with a good antioxidant serum to enhance their protective capabilities.

    I personally would use sunscreen over no sunscreen, though, because you're on RA and live in a very sunny place, and it sounds like you're dealing with hyperpigmentation issues.I am not fond of some of Neutrogena's sunscreens because I had a reaction to some of the ingredients in their dry touch sunscreens and their sprays. They do offer a baby version that is ZnO-based.

    A good alternative might be to get a UPF-rated shirt or shawl or jacket to put on exposed areas of your skin when you'll be outside, if you're not out for much, that could be a good idea. I like having a UPF 50+ jacket in my car for when I'm driving and can't reapply sunscreen at the moment, or for those times when I don't have sunscreen handy.

    I hope that might help you a little bit.

  4. #3
    Administrator gymrat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by brynich View Post
    Hey everyone! So unfortunately I just bought a Neutrogena SPF 100+ sunscreen today, thinking that it was going to be amazing however, I just read through a ton of posts saying that chemical sunscreens are harmful and dangerous. So, I live in Jamaica and I've been in countless pharmacies and NOT ONE has any physical sunscreens with Zinc Oxide or even Titanium Dioxide. Every single sunscreen sold down here that I've seen is a chemical one. So now I'm left to wonder, which is better- using the chemical sunscreen or just simply not using sunscreen at all? A little about me: I remain mostly indoors and probably come into direct contact with the sun maybe 10 minutes max for the day, so I don't believe simply not using sunscreen at all would be that bad. I am trying to remove a permatan however, and have just started the exfoliation phase, using Retin-A as an exfoliant. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.
    I have been there, and know you won't find a sunscreen with Zinc as I looked myself .......however, you will find RA for a great price anyways, I agree wholeheartedly with Ciao..............you are better off wearing a sunscreen than not wearing one at all !! The sun there is intense, as you are closer to the equator. So wear whatever sunscreen you can find, reapply it often, and try to avoid the sun the best you can, especially if you are exfoliating.
    -Our attitude toward life determines life's attitude towards us-

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  6. #4
    Thank you all for the helpful replies! Good news is they JUST got the Banana Boat Natural Reflect which has approximately 4% zinc oxide and 4% titanium dioxide. I know that it's not the best, as sunscreens like burnout have 16%+ ZnO but it's better than nothing.

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