New Online Survey Conducted by Harris Interactive Shows Many Americans Uninformed About Anti-Aging and Year-Round Sun

    New Online Survey Conducted by Harris Interactive Shows Many Americans
          Uninformed About Anti-Aging and Year-Round Sun Protection

PR Newswire

WASHINGTON, Sept. 3, 2013

Nearly 40 percent say sunscreen is used mainly onsunny days

WASHINGTON, Sept. 3, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ --As children return to
school and memories of summer vacations fade, a new nationwide online survey
conducted by Harris Interactive, Inc.[1] shows that many Americans around the
country are uninformed about sun protection, regardless of the season. They
also are unaware of the risks of sun exposure and who is at risk for sun
damage. In fact, 90 percent of skin aging is caused by everyday sun exposure
that occurs throughout the year, not just at the beach.


"The American public is still not in a place where they are sun smart every
time they step out of their door," said Farah K. Ahmed, Chair, Personal Care
Products Council Sunscreen Committee.

Wear Sunscreen Every Day – Even When Cloudy

Nearly 2/5 (38 percent) of Americans say sunscreen is mainly for use on a
sunny day. However, according to the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD),
even on cloudy days, up to 80 percent of the sun's harmful UV rays can
penetrate your skin and cause damage. Since UV rays can be reflected off of
water, sand, snow and concrete, the risk of sunburn can be high even if you
arein the shade or when skiing on a cold, winter day.

Cloudy with a Chance of Wrinkles

Americans are unaware of the damage everyday sun exposure causes. Two in five
(40 percent) say the main risk of sun exposure is sunburn, and 45 percent
think skin aging is mostly related to a person's genetics. However, extensive
research demonstrates that it's everyday sun exposure that contributes heavily

  oFine lines
  oSagging skin
  oDull skin
  oDehydrated skin
  oAge spots

In addition, sun exposure also contributes to:

  oPre-cancerous (actinic keratosis) and cancerous (basal cell carcinoma,
    squamous cell carcinoma and melanoma) skin lesions - caused by loss of the
    skin's immune function
  oBenign tumors
  oTelangiectasias -- the dilation of small blood vessels under the skin

Everyone Is At Risk

One-third (33 percent) of Americans believe the darker a person's skin, the
less susceptible they are to sun damage. According to the Centers for Disease
Control and Prevention (CDC), everyone's skin is damaged by UV exposure, but
those with lighter skin types are more at risk for developing skin cancer.

"Unfortunately, the American public still has a long way to go before we treat
sunscreen the way we treat seatbelts," said Ahmed. "Every time you step out
of your door, you should automatically apply sunscreen – rain or shine, summer
or winter – as well as wear protective clothing and seek shade whenever

According to the AAD and the Skin Cancer Foundation, some of the best ways to
protect yourself from UV damage are to:

  oSeek shade when appropriate. The sun's rays are strongest between 10 a.m.
    and 2 p.m. If your shadow appears to be shorter than you are, seek shade.
  oWear protective clothing, such as a long-sleeved shirt, pants, a
    wide-brimmed hat, and sunglasses.
  oGenerously apply a broad-spectrum, water-resistant sunscreen with a Sun
    Protection Factor (SPF) of 30 or more to all exposed skin.
    "Broad-spectrum" provides protection from both ultraviolet A (UVA) and
    ultraviolet B (UVB) rays.
  oUse extra caution near water, snow, and sand because they reflect and
    intensify the damaging rays of the sun, which can increase your chances of
  oAvoid tanning beds. Ultraviolet light from the sun and tanning beds can
    cause skin cancer and wrinkling. If you want to look tan, consider using a
    self-tanning product or spray, but continue to use sunscreen with it.

"Our goal is to help consumers make informed decisions, and use sunscreen as
part of a daily safe sun regimen. Sunscreen is a crucial step in the fight
against premature skin aging, sunburn, and skin cancer," said Ahmed. "Today,
consumers can find sunscreen protection in a variety of products labeled with
SPF, such as daily facial moisturizers, foundations, lipsticks, powders, etc.
Our hope is that sun protection will become as much of a habit as putting on
your seatbelt," said Ahmed.

For more information on sunscreens as well as cosmetics and personal care
products, visit

Based in Washington, D.C., the Personal Care Products Council is the leading
national trade association representing the global cosmetic and personal care
products industry. Founded in 1894, the Council's more than 600 member
companies manufacture, distribute, and supply the vast majority of finished
personal care products marketed in the U.S. As the makers of a diverse range
of products millions of consumers rely on every day, from sunscreens,
toothpaste and shampoo to moisturizer, lipstick and fragrance, personal care
products companies are global leaders committed to product safety, quality and

[1]Nationwide online survey conducted among 2,010 U.S. adults ages 18 or older
by Harris Interactive, Inc. on behalf of the Personal Care Products Council
from August 14-16, 2013. This online survey is not based on a probability
sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be
calculated. For complete survey methodology, including weighting variables,
please contact Lisa Powers (202-466-0489) or Hayley McConnell (202-454-0302).

SOURCE Personal Care Products Council

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