Ingredient Spotlight: Homosalate

As one of the foundations of our business we strive to make our skincare as beneficial as possible for the wellness of your skin. With the introduction of our new zinc oxide Mineral Sunscreen, made with non nano zinc oxide and skin loving ingredients such as aloe vera, cocoa butter, sweet almond oil, and green tea extract, it was important to us that we leave out some of the harmful ingredients that are in most regular sunscreens. One of those ingredients is homosalate. Have you heard of this chemical compound? Check some of your sunscreen and skincare ingredient labels because it will surely be listed in them. 

Nearly 45 percent of sunscreen products in the United States contain this as one of their active ingredients. So more than likely, if you have some regular sunscreen that you’ve purchased over the years, chances are it contains homosalate. This is a big problem, and we’re going to tell you why. 

Let’s explore exactly what homosalate is, how it relates to sunscreen, and why it’s important to avoid this unnecessary skincare ingredient. 


What is Homosalate?

Homosalate is an organic compound that acts as a chemical UV filter. Because of its salicylic acid content it is able to absorb UV rays so that it protects the skin from the damaging light of the sun. It also has a few other important abilities. For one, it makes your sunscreen also absorb faster, and two, it can make skin softer in the process. 

You can see why homosalate with a couple of its key features has been widely used in sunscreens for years. Yet, once the green beauty movement came along, people started looking much deeper into all the ingredients that are present in their most treasured skincare. This is terrific news for the overall health and wellness of beauty products, as it relates to how it affects your body. 


The Problem With Homosalate 

The issues with homosalate is that it can potentially act as an endocrine disruptor. What that means is that for all people, children included, it can possibly cause problems with the way your healthy cells and organs act. And because it’s readily absorbed into your skin, it has the potential of getting into your bloodstream faster. Seriously bad news. 

There are some studies that show that the topical application of products with homosalate can get into the blood three times faster than if you were to take this product orally. That’s a pretty scary result from just using a basic sunscreen. The possible health hazard just isn’t worth it, when more and more companies, like us at Sdara Skincare, are making sunscreens without these harmful ingredients. 


How the EWG Views This Chemical Ingredient

The Environmental Working Group (EWG) has an excellent system to rate the toxicity of skincare and beauty ingredients. Homosalate on their list comes in at a level of 2-4, which is depending on the dosage you use. The enhanced skin absorption of the ingredient is one of the biggest problems according to the EWG

A level 4 is considered a moderate risk. They also cite that it has high contamination concerns, moderate non-reproductive organ toxicity, and moderate use restrictions. The takeaway from those facts are that it’s basically better to leave it out of your sunscreen products if possible. 


How Other Countries View the Ingredient

In looking at Japan’s Standards for Ingredients, they have restricted the use of homosalate in their cosmetics. They have manufacturing and concentration limits that they must adhere to in each of their products.  

Europe is also very picky about the ingredients they put into their cosmetic and sunscreen products. They also don’t use homosalate in many of their sunscreens. 

In America, the FDA regulates what chemicals can go into our skincare products. The FDA really started to ramp up their concern about sunscreen in 2015. They found issues with many ingredients including ones like homosalate, oxybenzone, and octisalate. Finding out that most sunscreen formulations haven’t changed since the 1970s was of a great concern to them. 

According to the FDA there are only two active ingredients that are approved by the FDA for sunscreen, which are zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. Both of those physical sunblock ingredients are present in our Sdara Skincare Mineral Sunscreen. 

Potential Side Effects for Your Body

There are other side effects to worry about with homosalate, other than the potential for disrupting your endocrine system. Keep in mind, as a hormone disruptor it can affect estrogen, androgen, and progesterone. You would think that would be problematic enough, and it really is an issue. There are also topical skin reactions that can be a concern. According to WebMD, these other side effects don’t happen that often, but there is the potential for the following: 

  • Skin rash

  • Acne

  • Contact dermatitis

  • Inflammation in the skin

  • Dry skin

All in all, having homosalate present in your sunscreen or skincare products just isn’t worth the risk. 


Sdara Skincare is Here for You

Caring about what goes into your skincare is important. At Sdara Skincare we go through great lengths to make sure that each and every product we bring you is as safe and healthy for your skin as possible. That includes making sure ingredients with the potential for harm, stay out of our formulations. 

We’d love to hear from you, especially regarding any questions you have about our pure Zinc Oxide Sunscreen. Sunscreen that feels more like good for you skincare is just one of the best parts of our new formula. The health and safety of our sunscreen is our number one goal.