CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Beware which sunscreen you slather on your skin when heading out into the Lowcountry sun.
A new study finds many sunscreens people are buying don't meet the standards of the American Academy of Dermatology.
Researchers in Chicago looked at sunscreen products offered for sale on a popular online retailer. Following consumer reviews, looking at the sunscreens that had gotten four or more stars in the consumer reviews, and the highest number of reviews, the researchers analyzed the top one percent of those products categorized as "sunscreen."
They determined 40 percent didn't meet the AAD guidelines.
Those guidelines suggest using an SPF of 30 or higher, and that the products be broad-spectrum and water and/or sweat resistant.
According to the study, most often, the products lacked the resistance to water or sweat. Researchers found consumers primarily buy sunscreen
based on how it feels or smells rather than performance.
Experts say sunscreen helps reduce the risk of skin cancer, yet adults and adolescents often go without. Some dermatologists are interested to see if consumer preference and product recommendations could increase the use of sunscreen.