Summertime Rashes

Summertime fun can be complicated by rashes.  Sometimes one will develop a rash while wearing a sunscreen.  Does this mean you can’t wear sunscreen? Not necessarily. The rash could be caused by irritation to the sunscreen product or an allergy to an ingredient in the sunscreen.  For example, one chemical sunscreen ingredient, Oxybenzone has been reported to cause both contact allergy and photo contact allergy. In situations of allergy to chemical sunscreens, physical blocking agents such as micronized zinc oxide and titanium oxide may be used.  Patch testing can be helpful to determine more precisely which chemical ingredient is the culprit allergen.

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Author
Alison Ehrlich, MD, MHS