Tuesday, April 14, 2009

*Alert* Sunscreens Do Go Bad!

It’s getting to be that time of year again – time to make sure you not only apply your sunscreens but make sure they are not expired. We made a suggestion last week and as promised, here are some we are loving right now.

From L to R clockwise:


CLINIQUE SPF 50 Face Cream ($17.50/1.7oz @ sephora.com)

BARE ESCENTUALS SPF 30 Natural Sunscreen ($28/4g @ bareescentuals.com)

CLINIQUE SPF 45 Targeted Protection Stick ($17.50/.21oz @ clinique.com)

HAMPTON SUN SPF 30 Sun Tanning Lotion ($35/  @ hamptonsuncare.com)

SUPERGOOP SPF 30 UVA/UVB for Face and Body ($6/.84oz, $11/1.6oz @ saks.com)

CALIFORNIA BABY Sunblock Stick SPF 30+ ($14.99/.5oz @ smallflower.com)



Any tips for where/how to dispose expired sunscreen?


Hi Yoshi, there is no restrictions on simply putting it in the trash. Am I missing something?! :)


Okay, I never really thought about sunscreen expiring, I just knew I would throw it out when it started to smell funky - sometimes using the same bottle for a coupla summers in a row.
To the trash I go...


Thanks for the reminder! I write my sunscreen's expiration date with a permanent marker but have several tubes and sometimes I forget about it!


Thanks for the information on sunscreens. I am going to my Clinique counter to try the SPF 50. I have been using Neutrogena but it is waterproof and pills under my makeup. Maybe the Clinique will become my new go-to sunscreen.


i must note that self-tanners expire too :( I had a bottle of Jergens self-tanner from last summer and I decided to use some last night, but it was all watery and weird looking... i really thought tanners would have a longer shelf life but guess not :(

Jacqueline Bennett

Thank you for the timely reminder. Now that spring FINALLY (touch wood!) seems to be here in Ontario the weekly visits to the beach will start soon so will have to check my expiry dates!


I'm always anxious to buy sunscreen as soon as the stores start displaying the bottles at the beginning of the isles where everybody can see. I'm trying the spray ones this year


Definitely going to have to try some of these out. Last year I made the mistake of using a 50 spf sport sunscreen which said waterproof but washed right off as soon as I hit the water and I spend most of my time in the water so it was bad.

Katy Davis

I just figured this out yesterday when I used my last years sunscreen :(

Ann Hill

I didn't realize sunscreen goes bad! I live in Florida, so it doesn't last long, however. Here's what I found online about this: The rule of thumb is that the active ingredients in sunscreen (like zinc, titanium dioxide and Parsol 1789) should remain stable and effective for about three years, according to David Leffell, M.D., professor of dermatology at Yale School of Medicine. But if it smells funny, feels lumpy or has a bizarre color, dump it. To keep your sunscreen as close to new as possible, store it in a dry spot at room temperature with the lid tightly fastened. Hope this helps!


Be careful if you buy discounted sunblock or stuff from the dollar store...it's not a good deal if it's expired and doesn't work! Sometimes it's worth it to get older stuff if you know you can use it all before it goes bad, like on vacation or something.

Kate Jones

I've gotten the talk about sunscreen many times from my dermatologist, but never really took it to heart until a recent melanoma scare. Skin care is serious, I even buy face lotion with 15 spf to wear out every day now. Great post, people need to be informed more about stuff like this! Thanks.


Ugh I hate it when sunscreen expires, one day it is fine and the next it is completely separated. I always make sure to buy them as new as possible.


I bought the Bare Essentials natural sunscreen for a cruise we just took a few weeks ago. I love this stuff! It is SO convenient and did double duty for me: sunscreen by day and foundation/powder by night. Plus, did you know it is refillable?


I live by the Clinique spf 50 Face Cream. I have incredibly fair skin, so I don't leave the house on sunny days without it or I end up with a burnt nose and burnt cheeks for sure.

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