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on May 31, 2011
I've used this strength and other SPFs from Neutrogena with great results. As for another reviewer's caution, this is from the American Academy of Dermatology' web site:

1. What is oxybenzone and how is it used in sunscreen and personal care products?
Oxybenzone (also known as benzophenone-3 or BP-3) is one of 16 sunscreen active ingredients (compounds that absorb, scatter, or reflect ultraviolet (UV) radiation) regulated as over-the-counter (OTC) drugs by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).1 Oxybenzone provides broad-spectrum protection from harmful UVA and UVB rays. It was approved by the FDA in 1978 and is one of the oldest active ingredients in use today.

The FDA has approved the use of oxybenzone in sunscreen in concentrations of up to 6 percent, which is less than what is allowed in both Europe and Australia (10 percent).2 Oxybenzone also is used to protect cosmetics and other personal care products from deterioration by UV exposure.

2. I've heard oxybenzone called a hormone disruptor. What does this mean and are there any data to support this?
Concerns have been raised that oxybenzone may be capable of altering/disrupting normal hormonal (endocrine) balance. Specifically, oxybenzone is suspected of having estrogenic activity, which is the ability to exhibit properties similar to the hormone estrogen.

There have been some published observations using in vitro (test tube) cell lines, as well as studies in rats fed oxybenzone, and in fish, where oxybenzone was added to the water, which have indicated oxybenzone or its byproducts can demonstrate some estrogenic activity.4-9 However, the observed estrogenic effects of oxybenzone often are considerably weaker when compared to the estrogen (estradiol) used in these experiments. In some studies, a much higher concentration of oxybenzone (1,000 to 1 million times higher than that of estradiol) was needed to achieve a comparable result.

Importantly, available literature does not support a link between oxybenzone use and estrogen or other hormonal alterations in humans to date.10-12

3. Are there any studies in humans that demonstrate hormone disruption or other potential to affect human health?
Similar to many topically applied agents, oxybenzone has been shown to be absorbed by human skin10, and can be detected in the blood and urine of sunscreen users and the population at large.13-15 However, results from multiple studies do not support a link between oxybenzone and any short- or long-term health problems, or the increased risk of adverse health effects.

Specifically, when oxybenzone was repeatedly applied to the skin of human volunteers, it has been determined that:

No biologically significant alterations in reproductive hormones (testosterone, follicle-stimulating hormone, luteinizing hormone, or estradiol) have been detected;11
The concentrations of oxybenzone absorbed are not capable of disrupting normal thyroid hormone levels12, and;
The concentration of oxybenzone penetrating the skin is too low to cause epidermal cell damage.10
It should be noted that oxybenzone has been used as sunscreen ingredient since 1978, and aside from allergic or irritant reactions, such as photocontact and contact dermatitis, there has not been any report of systemic side effects of oxybenzone use.

Therefore, the proven benefits of sunscreen to prevent sunburn and reduce the risk of skin cancer outweigh any concerns of oxybenzone toxicity or health hazard.

4. What do the FDA or other agencies have to say about oxybenzone?
The safety of oxybenzone was originally reviewed and approved by the FDA in 1978, and it is one of the oldest active ingredients in use today.17

Since then, there have been additional reviews of oxybenzone by other regulatory agencies and expert panels with similar conclusions regarding its safety for use in consumer products. For example, in 2001 and again in 2006, the Scientific Committee on Consumer Products (SCCP) of the European Union (EU) developed an opinion paper based on a review of current scientific knowledge and stated "the organic UV filters used in cosmetic sunscreen products allowed in the EU market today have no estrogenic effects that could potentially affect human health."18

Also, the safety of oxybenzone for use in cosmetics and personal care products was also reviewed in 1983 and confirmed in 2002 by the Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR) expert panel, which is an independent panel of scientific and medical experts who assess the safety of cosmetic ingredients in the United States.19-20

Read the AAD paper with references: oxybenzone_questions_aad
1111 comments133 of 152 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on July 8, 2012
Oh, how happy I was when I found this product a few years ago. Pricey, perhaps, but SO worth it. High SPF, non-greasy, UVA and UVB blocking, what wasn't there to love? My entire family of fair redheads depended on it for year-round protection.

This year, though, things were different. I eagerly stocked up on eight bottles of the SPF 45 before the start of the sunny season -- in previous years we used SPF 85 or 100 but I had faith in the claims that anything over SPF 30 was of negligible benefit -- and slathered it on the first time I was in the sun for an extended period. Even with wearing long sleeves and a wide-brimmed sun hat I ended up with what (I thought) was a painful burn all over my face and neck. It took a couple of weeks to clear and often resembled a rash, with raised, red bumps that itched like nobody's business. I didn't make the connection until the next time I used it and had the same result within hours. I don't wear makeup and I don't use cleansers on my face; the only moisturizer I use is specifically for sensitive skin and I've been using for a long time with no issue.

After doing some research I discovered that what I have is a photoallergic reaction to this sunblock, which means the sunblock itself doesn't cause a reaction, but once it comes into exposure with sunlight it does. Which completely nullifies the point of sunblock in the first place. I also read that Neutrogena had changed its formula and the older "blue label" bottles were different than the new "black label" ones - checking a leftover bottle from last year with the new ones from this year proved that the formula does appear significantly different, with this year's sunblock containing a number of new complicated chemical names I can't pronounce. One or more of them no longer jives with my extremely sensitive skin.

So now I've spent upwards of a month suffering from red, itchy, oozing, tight, dry, skin, which is now starting to peel and looks a fright. I haven't wanted to leave my house and I can't even count the number of times I've been asked if I'm all right/too hot/contagious. Horrifying. I am so very disappointed that I can't even properly express it. I guess it's back to the drawing board looking for a new sunblock that can protect myself and my family without giving us chemical burns.

A real bummer.
66 comments124 of 143 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on May 13, 2011
I have to wear sunscreen every day and this it by far the best that I have tried.
The sunscreens that I have tried before leave either a white mask or a super greasy face. This product makes my skin look smooth and without grease! looove it!
0Comment28 of 30 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on April 14, 2011
Love this sunscreen. I have purchased more expensive sunscreen, but it was really greasy. No greasy mess here! Does leave some white streaks, but if you rub it in it will go away. :)
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on May 21, 2012
Best sunscreen I have ever used, hand's down. The tubes are perfectly sized (3.0 ounces) with a strong cap that will ensure clean, safe travels. The sunscreen is SPF 45, and provides excellent coverage. The lotion goes on creamy and dries matte-- no greasy, oily residue.

Fantastic deal, and it helps that Amazon offers this lotion as Subscribe & Save.
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on July 13, 2015
I am very disappointed in this sunscreen. While wearing dark cotton shorts & a shirt, the sunscreen wiped white chalky residue all over my clothes. I tried it one more time, hoping it was a fluke, but it happened the next time too. It absorbs quickly, but leaves a weird film that wipes off all over dark clothing.
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on August 11, 2011
I bought this product after reading other reviews on Amazon. This is a great sunscreen for those of us who hate the greasy shininess after application. It worked really well when I was in the Caribbean and let me tell you: it is HOT and SUNNY down there! On touring/shopping days, I applied it only once and did not get burned even after being in and out of the sun for 8 hours. On swimming/beach days, reapplication is a must. Sunscreen just isn't waterproof, no matter what the bottles say!

I rated this product a 4/5 instead of a 5/5 because it did not spread very well. It's pretty thick and you really need to use A LOT of sunscreen to cover yourself. I felt even two 3oz bottles was cutting it close for having to apply sunscreen everyday (sometimes twice) for a 1 week vacation. Nonetheless, it's the best sunscreen I've ever used and I'll buy it again next season.
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on October 27, 2012
This is my favorite non-beauty sunscreen. It's incredibly light and absorbs immediately; I find myself actually wanting/needing to use as much sunscreen as the doc recommends for your face. In your hand, it feels a lot like moisturizer - but a tad thicker. Once it's on your face, you can't tell the difference. There's no scent that I can perceive, which I like. The product goes quickly if you use it regularly (2-3 months per bottle), so you can't beat Amazon's twin pack.
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on May 19, 2015
It is not safe fir skin -
0Comment7 of 8 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on March 25, 2013
I don't get all the great reviews on this stuff. I bought the 2 pack 45spf. It's very thick, leaves a white film. Flakes off nasty if you rub it at all. Settles in neck creases. It's not as bad if you use moisturizer first to help it smooth in. And put a light amount on. But if you put alot on to get good coverage, yikes. But on dry skin you'll have a white film. Absorbs better into to hands and arms, just not face & neck. And it does burn a little. But so do alot of suncreens on face.
0Comment3 of 3 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse

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