If you’ve heard Europeans have more options when it comes to sunscreen, you’d be right. According to the Environmental Working Group, European sunscreens provide better UVA protection. That’s because sunscreen formulators there can choose from among seven chemicals that filter UVA, whereas American manufacturers have only three ingredients from which to choose. “Despite greater public awareness surrounding the dangers of the sun, the last time an over-the-counter (OTC) sunscreen ingredient was approved by the FDA was in the 1990s,” says Tyler Steele, assistant vice president of medical and media relations for La Roche-Posay. “Since 2002, eight new sunscreen ingredients have been filed but are still awaiting approval.” So, what’s the holdup? Apparently, the FDA is waiting on additional data from manufacturers in order to determine whether the ingredients are generally recognized as safe and effective (GRASE) for OTC sunscreen use.
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