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Formulation of Sun Protection Products

SpecialChem / Marie-Claude Martini – Jun 15, 2007

Micronized titanium oxide and zinc oxide powders have been used for about fifteen years. Firstly they were in the form of crude powders, and are increasingly in the form of coated particles and ready-to-use dispersions, especially for titanium oxide. Currently, no really novel technologies are appearing (apart from greater research into transparency) but there is an increasing number of suppliers. We should state that zinc oxide has not been included in the European Community list of allowed sun protection filters. It is however approved for use in the USA (25%), Canada (20%), Australia (20%) and, apparently without a concentration limit, in Japan. It does have several advantages: it absorbs long UV-A's preferentially, it increases the UV-B protection factor index by 1 to 2 points for each percentage unit of concentration, it is an antiseptic that makes reduction of preservative concentration possible. In contrast, it is incompatible with carbomers (watch out for possible surprises with emulsifying polymers) but it tolerates polysaccharide gellants.

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