It’s not all that unusual for me to think about sunscreen on a daily basis (I’m kind of addicted, if you can’t tell by the 45 articles in the sunscreen category…), but now that sunny days are upon us, maybe it’s on the average person’s mind, too. That’s why I decided to pluck a sunscreen-related inquiry from my backlog of reader requests. This looped me in to a brand I’d never heard of before: Art of Sport, a brand that focuses on developing products for athletes. Someone sent me the following message to request a review of the company’s sunscreen:
Hi Emily, love your reviews on skincare products and the input your dad provides on the chemical formulation aspect of those products. I’ve recently come across a sunscreen from the Art of Sport that has good reviews on Amazon and I was wondering what your (and your dads) take on it is. It’s formulated without oxybenzone or octinoxate so I’m really intrigued in trying it out as a daily facial sunscreen.
Just a caveat to note: This article won’t provide an actual review of this sunscreen—I didn’t buy this sunscreen or try it myself, so this review serves as more of analysis of the sunscreen’s ingredients and claims.
Art of Sport Sunscreen SPF 50 ingredients
Active ingredients: homosalate 12%, octocrylene 4.8%, octisalate 4%, avobenzone 2.4%
Inactive ingredients: water, propylene glycol, dicaprylyl ether, cetyl peg/ppg-10⁄1 dimethicone, phenoxyethanol, benzoic acid, ethylhexylglycerin, glycereth-2 cocoate, octyldodecyl stearyl citrate crosspolymer, disodium edta, sodium chloride
This sunscreen is fragrance-free and uses non-paraben preservatives, including phenoxyethanol and benzoic acid. It contains four chemical sunscreen actives: homosalate, octocrylene, octisalate, and avobenzone.
I asked my dad if, based on these ingredients, he thought this Art of Sport sunscreen would provide sufficient protection against UVA rays. In the U.S., a “broad spectrum” sunscreen provides both UVA and UVB protection, and you know the approximate level of UVB protection thanks to the SPF…but you don’t get a UVAPF rating, which provides more of a precise measurement of UVA protection. Let’s see what he thinks.
My Dad the Chemist’s review of Art of Sport Sunscreen SPF 50
Dear Emily, FDA allows up to 3% Avobenzone (provide protection against both UVA1 and UVA2 rays) in the formula, Octocrylene provides protection against UVA2 ray only, Octisalate provides very narrow range of UVA2 protection only, I think this formula may provide SPF 50 protection but if Avobenzone is at 3% would optimize UVA protection in my view.
My dad thinks that this formula might provide SPF 50 protection, but he thinks they should have included the highest possible level of avobenzone in the formula (3%, according to FDA guidelines) to provide more UVA protection. Although octocrylene and octisalate provide partial UVA protection, avobenzone is the only ingredient in this formula that offers protection against both portions of the UVA spectrum: UVA1 and UVA2.
I took a look at Art of Sport Sunscreen, and I think it looks promising, even though I don’t typically like chemical sunscreens because I’m afraid my skin will get irritated. It’s fragrance-free and alcohol-free, which are all good things for sensitive skin. It’s also oil-free, which is nice for those of us who have oily skin. Plus, it claims to deliver 80 minutes of water resistance, which is always a bonus in a sunscreen, not only if you’re hitting the beach but also if you tend to sweat when you’re walking around during the summer (I certainly do). It’s also pretty affordable on Amazon, so I would be willing to give it a try the next time I’m looking for a water-resistant sunscreen.