The sunscreen aisle at CVS just got a major makeover in the name of skin health .
On Thursday, the drugstore chain announced that it would be removing all sun care products with SPF lower than 15 from its shelves, and replacing them with 30 new SPF+/broad spectrum products that either meet or exceed FDA standards . The overhaul is part of CVS’s “Long Live Skin” campaign , which launched on Thursday. The campaign is focused on increasing awareness around skin health , sun safety , and proper skin care.
A quick refresher on SPF : It’s a measure of theoretically how much longer your skin is protected against UVB rays than if you were to go outside with no protection. This means, according to the Skin Cancer Foundation , that if it takes 20 minutes for your unprotected skin to start burning, using SPF 15 should make it take 15 times longer to burn. That comes out to five hours of protection. But that formula is inherently flawed because sunscreen shouldn’t be expected to work for longer than two hours without reapplication. And, FYI, experts say SPF higher than 50 doesn’t really offer any significant extra protection. Your best bet: Grab an SPF 30 broad spectrum sunscreen—which will protect against both UVB and UVA rays—and reapply every two hours.
CVS is the only national retailer to get rid of low-level SPF products. To fill the newly empty space on its shelves, stores will be rolling out new brands with greater skin-health benefits throughout 2017, including more dermatological-approved options as well as additional natural and organic products. In addition to all of this, the company has made sure that the SPF products in its own CVS Health line have been certified with a Seal of Recommendation by the Skin Cancer Foundation.
The pharmacy has also teamed up with Johnson & Johnson and the American Cancer Society to educate customers about why proper skin care —and sun care , in particular—is such a big deal. Educational signage will soon be in every CVS location, as well as a “Skin Solution” section at the checkout of over 4,000 stores that offers derm-recommended products for skin conditions including acne, rosacea, scarring, rashes, and sunburn. And from June 18–24, Johnson & Johnson will donate $1 for every Neutrogena or Aveeno product with SPF 15 or higher purchased (up to $100,000) to the American Cancer Society to help prevent skin cancer.
Save your own skin and someone else’s at the same time? It’s a skin—erm — win /win.
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