As Thomas H. Maugh II reported for The Los Angeles Times last week, the FDA has just released new rules for sunscreen labeling, including allowing products with a sun protection factor of 15 or higher to be labeled to say that they reduce the risk of skin cancer and premature skin aging. Also: “Sunscreens will no longer be able to claim to have a specific SPF above 50: The highest category now will be 50+. ‘We don’t have sufficient data to show that those with an SPF higher than 50 provide greater protection,’ [Dr. Janet Woodcock, director of the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research] said.”
And remember those “waterproof” and “sweatproof” claims? Now sunscreens can only be called “water-resistant.” Just as important to fly fishers and other outdoors sports enthusiasts: protection claims must be accompanied by a time-limit, either 40 or 80 minutes.