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New UVA logo in Canada meets rising demand for ‘broad spectrum’ sun protection

By Lucy Whitehouse + , 11-Jun-2014
Last updated the 12-Jun-2014 at 10:27 GMT

A new logo launched in Canada responds to the increasing consumer awareness of the need for sunscreens which offer both UVA and UVB protection.

Launched as part of Sun Awareness Week 2014, the new symbol will indicate a minimum UVA protection which is equivalent to 1/3 of the Sun Protection Factor (SPF) in a product: SPF denotes the UVB protection offered.

The move comes as confirmation that manufacturers are at last acknowledging repeated calls from segment experts for this balancing of protection capacity in Canada, as it has taken several years for the logo, already used across Europe, to be accepted by Health Canada.

For example, the managing director of sun care specialists Skinnovation, Dr Jack Ferguson, recently told Cosmetics Design that: “UVA protection is not at the maximum, nor even the optimum, in all sun care or day care products.

Balancing it out

 “The best that the consumer should do,” Dr Ferguson notes,“is to use a high factor and the highest possible UVA protection.”

The skin care expert observes this is easier for consumers in the UK, where all the major retailers use an additional UVA grading system of 3 to 5 stars, but the new logo in Canada is a step in the right direction.

Dr Ferguson, however, calls for further progress: “It is arguable that 1/3 UVA ratio to SPF is insufficient as it is possible with current technology to achieve a much higher UVA protection, which must be beneficial to the consumer.”

FDA barriers

Innovation in the segment comes up against a lot of red tape at the moment in North America, with current FDA regulation strict and tricky to maneuver.

But the recently proposed Sunscreen Innovation Act hopes to streamline the national regulatory body’s approval process, by ensuring that sunscreen ingredients receive a transparent review within a predictable timeframe of 11 months or less.

As it stands now, there is no mandatory timeline for this process. Existing FDA eligibility requirements would be maintained; meaning an ingredient must be used extensively and safely for at least five years in at least one country.

To learn more about the latest consumer and market insights, scientific developments and technical innovations in skin care, sign up here to attend Cosmetics Design’s fourth annual Skin Care Ingredients virtual trade show, taking place on June 16.

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