Friday, November 30, 2012Sector

Sunscreens efficiency: an answer by the cosmetic industry

©L'Observatoire des Cosmétiques

The debate has been renewed last summer, in August, by a paper released in the French daily Libération. Laurence Coiffard, a researcher-lecturer in the Nantes (Brittany, France) University, fingered out misleading SPFs, overrated, that could, then, lead to increased risks of skin cancers. An answer is released now by the industry, indeed, by Cosmed, an association of the French SMEs of the cosmetic sector, “Laurence Coiffard’s tests are misleading; she has gone through a professional misconduct, along with a serious moral fault, playing on people’s fears with non-validated scientific basis.

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CosmeticOBS-L’Observatoire des Cosmétiques had reported on this study, in its August 14 article, titled Sunscreens: how to choose? A paper had, then, just be issued in the Libération daily, which “displayed the results of a study measuring the differences between the claimed SPF and the true protection provided by several creams,” and reported “disturbing findings.”
According to this study, by Laurence Coiffard, a researcher-lecturer in the Nantes University, based on measurements performed in her Laboratoire de Pharmacie Industrielle and Cosmétologie (Laboratory of Industrial Pharmacy and Cosmetology),  25% to 30% of the products have an SPF lower than the one displayed on the label.”
Libération pointed that there was “a scientific controversy [whose] issue would have to be decided, the number of new cases of skin cancers having tripled within twenty-five years.”

The impact of the revelations

The news has been a concern to consumers. It has also rung the alarm bell throughout the cosmetic industry.

“This paper has been the cause of an emotional trauma in the cosmetics companies,” Jean-Marc Giroux, the Cosmed President, says now. Cosmed is the representative association of the SMEs of the sector. “It takes about ten years for a manufacturer to develop its image. They …

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