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Sunscreen Photostability

Abstract

Photostability is the resistance to change induced by ultraviolet radiation (UVR). Its antonym photolability is the tendency to change under exposure to UVR. Sunscreen photostability and photolability, with its causes, consequences, and solutions, are the subjects of this chapter.

We begin the chapter with a brief history of photostability in the sunscreen industry and explain why photostability will remain a key issue for many years to come. Because sunscreens are photochemical systems, we present a primer on photochemistry to set the stage for the technical sections to follow. In the first of these, we review what has been learned over the past 20 years about the surprisingly complex photochemistry of the UVA filter, avobenzone. Of the 55 or so UV filters approved throughout the world for the use in sunscreens, about half are in common usage. The photostabilities of many of these have been investigated, and we present the results of the most recent studies. We then focus on how various UV filter combinations affect the photostabilities of individual UV filters and the sunscreen product as a whole. We share strategies for improving sunscreen photostability and discuss the dozen or so commercially available photostabilizers and how they function. Lastly, we discuss different approaches to testing photostability.

Keywords

  • Singlet Excited State
  • Enol Form
  • Triplet Excited State
  • Solar Simulator
  • Natural Sunlight

These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Notes

  1. 1.

    τ KT represents the lifetime of the keto triplet.

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Correspondence to Craig A. Bonda .

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Bonda, C.A., Lott, D. (2016). Sunscreen Photostability. In: Wang, S., Lim, H. (eds) Principles and Practice of Photoprotection. Adis, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-29382-0_14

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-29382-0_14

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