"Antioxidants are not substitutes for sunscreen, but it's important for consumers to understand that using an SPF as a stand-alone product will not give them the optimal protection that can be achieved when used in combination with a topical antioxidant," said SkinCeuticals scientific consultant Dr Sheldon Pinnell.
SkinCeuticals' new methodology gauges the level of protection that topical antioxidant products provide against solar-simulated light (UVA/UVB) by measuring the redness and sunburn cell formation following UV exposure.
"SPF is measured by using UVB light only. This is significant as UVA is also known to be a cause of premature aging of the skin. This supports the need for consumers to take added precautions such as incorporating combination antioxidants into their sun protection regimens," said Pinnell.
Using photo-protection the new test determines 'antioxidant protection factors', for instance an antioxidant that contains a protection factor of 2 is claimed to deliver twofold protection.
SkinCeuticals recently released SkinCeuticals C+E, which is a combination antioxidant product that provides fourfold protection - the highest level of any antioxidant product currently on the market.
SkinCeuticals has also conducted preliminary testing of a new combination antioxidant formulation showing a protective factor of eight. This product is expected to be released early next year.
SkinCeuticals - developer of dermatology products that improve the overall health and appearance of the skin - stress that its new measuring test is not a substitute for SPF and recommend that consumers follow sun safety guidelines set forth by the FDA and the American Academy of Dermatology.