Experts Urge Canadians to Look Beyond Sunscreen's SPF Number to Prevent Sun
Damage from UVA rays through filters such as Mexoryl(R) Technology equally important as SPF's UVB protection...

MONTREAL, June 15 /CNW/ - As the sunny days of summer are rapidly approaching, experts are urging Canadians to rethink the way they buy sunscreen. Currently too many consumers base their purchasing decision exclusively on the SPF number which only protects against the sun's UVB rays. To get the maximum benefits of a sunscreen, consumers need to look for a broad-spectrum sunscreen that provides a UVB as well as UVA filter such as Mexoryl(R) Technology.

"Most consumers are familiar with SPF - the Sun Protection Factor number on the bottle that measures the amount of protection it provides against the sun's UVB rays," said Dr. Charles Lynde, Dermatologist. "However, while UVB rays have mainly short-term visible effects like sunburns and irritation, the damage caused by the sun's UVA rays is more complex and long-term which might be why UVA isn't better understood."

The sun's UVA rays are 100 times more abundant and penetrate the skin more than UVB rays causing long-term effects such as accelerated skin aging (photo-aging), skin rashes, and deep wrinkles. In fact 80 per cent of UVA rays may reach the dermis (second layer of skin) and can transform the exposed cells into free radicals potentially leading to DNA alteration and cancer. And while UVB protection may have traditionally been the most important criteria for consumers, UVA filters are starting to gain more importance with the recognition that both types of rays contribute to the development of skin cancer.

"The incidence of skin cancer is now 30 per cent higher in Canadians than it was ten years ago so it is imperative consumers start making better sun care choices," said Dominique Soussan, Vice-President Medical Relations, L'Oréal Canada. "While there is no question that SPF is crucial in helping to select the right sunscreen for each consumer, we strongly believe that broad-spectrum filters that protect against both UVA and UVB rays are essential to minimize sun damage."

According to a February 2010 study by IFOP North America, Canadian dermatologists chose Mexoryl(R) Technology as the most effective combination of filters against UVA and UVB rays. Launched in 2007 by L'Oréal, the Mexoryl(R) Technology System is a patented UVA and UVB filter system unique to the formulas found in leading brands of sunscreen Ombrelle, La Roche-Posay and Vichy.

In addition to checking the label for both UVA and UVB protection, Dr. Lynde also recommends looking for:

    -   Recognition of the Canadian Dermatology Association as proof that the
        product meets their criteria
    -   Photostability assurance that the formula will maintain its
        effectiveness - and not degrade - when exposed to sunlight
    -   Sensitive skin-types should look for hypoallergenic formulas that are
        non-comedogenic, fragrance and colourant-free to minimize the risk of
        skin irritations
    -   SPF should be selected based on skin type (ranging from skin that
        rarely burns to skin that burns easily) and nature and length of
        planned outdoor activities

Once the ideal sunscreen has been selected, L'Oréal's Dominique Soussan recommends consumers do this quick check-list for SAFER sunscreen application:

    S - Sunglasses & Hats - wear these to protect the face, which receives
        the most sun exposure and damage
    A - Advanced Application - apply approximately 30 minutes before you go
        outside so sunscreen fully penetrates the skin
    F - Full Palm - each application for an average adult should equal the
        full-size of the palm of your hand
    E - Everywhere - apply sunscreen everywhere even under your clothes, as
        the sun's UV rays can penetrate through fabric
    R - Reapply every 2 hours for maximum efficiency of your sunscreen

    About L'Oréal

The leading innovator in sun protection, The L'Oréal Group has invested significantly in Ultra-Violet radiation research and now holds more than 70 patents in this field alone. L'Oréal's leading sun protection brands include Ombrelle, La Roche-Posay and Vichy. All of these brands feature Mexoryl(R) Technology offering both UVA and UVB photostable protection and are recommended by the Canadian Dermatology Association. For more information visit

    About Ombrelle

Ombrelle is one of the leading sun protection brands recommended by Canadian dermatologists and pharmacists. Launched in 1990, Ombrelle has dedicated itself to offering state-of-the art sun protection technology to protect Canadians and their families while enjoying a healthy sun-smart lifestyle. Ombrelle offers a wide range of hypoallergenic sun protection formulas and products including special formulations for Kids, Body, Sport and Face.

    About La Roche-Posay

According to a 2010 market research by IFOP North America, La Roche-Posay is the number one dermatologist-recommended skincare brand in Canada. Established in France in 1975, La Roche-Posay offers a full line of innovative formulas and textures that provide comfort and dermatological efficacy to all skin types - even the most sensitive. La Roche-Posay offers a wide range of hypoallergenic sun protection products, including its SPF 60 cream, backed by 21 clinical studies of which 18 are published. LRP has also launched the public awareness campaign for the self-detection of melanoma.

    About Vichy Laboratoires

Backed by more than 75 years of skin expertise, Vichy Laboratoires is dedicated to the science of skin health, including educating the public about sun-safe behaviour and the dangers of sun damage. Vichy helps consumers demystify sun protection to motivate consumers to better protect themselves and adapt responsible sun exposure habits. For the second year Vichy Canada proudly partnered with renowned children's association "Opération Enfant Soleil" to raise awareness about the importance of protecting children's skin from the sun. Vichy Capital Soleil offers a broad range of products, for lips, face and body. Tested on sensitive skin under dermatological control, Capital Soleil products are appropriate for both adults and kids.

SOURCE L'Oreal Canada Inc.

For further information: For further information: Media Contact: Margaret Batuszkin, Cowan & Company, 416.462.8773 ext. 22,

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