Alpha Hydroxy Acids may make you sunburn more easily? – by Irene Farré, IF Medical Writing

This morning I read a tweet from the FDA regarding Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHAs). Those of you working in the cosmetic industry will already know that AHAs (glycolic acid and lactic acid are the most comment to my knowledge) are used in a wide variety of cosmetics for smoothing fine lines and surface wrinkles, among other uses.

The FDA has received 114 adverse dermatologic experiences for AHA-containing skin products between 1992-2004.  I admit that this might not seem a lot, but we are talking about cosmetics here…

It seems that AHAs may make you sunburn more easily. As one might expect, the more serious adverse Latestreactions appear to occur most often with products that cause the greatest degree of exfoliation, such as “skin peelers.”

So, after reading this tweet, I went to check my cosmetics. However, I could not find a description of the ingredients for some of my products.

After doing some reading, I have found out that the ‘Fair Packaging and Labeling Act’ (FPLA) requires an ingredient declaration on cosmetic products sold at the retail level to consumers. However, it does not apply to products used exclusively by professionals.

Indeed, I got some of the products from the beauty salon so no idea what they contain as there is no description!

In the past, I have done some courses regarding cosmetic regulations. I am aware that the Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR) Expert Panel – the industry’s self-regulatory body for reviewing the safety of cosmetic ingredients – has implemented safety measures for cosmetics. But, in my opinion, there are still many gaps and grey areas that need to be addressed.

Photo source: FDA

Written by Irene Farré, IF Medical Writing